Updated on 02/25/2015 12:06PM

Breeders' Cup tickets on sale March 4


LEXINGTON, Ky. – The mad dash to secure the limited number of tickets for the two-day Breeders’ Cup event at Keeneland in horse-crazy Lexington will begin at noon March 4, when the Breeders’ Cup opens ticket sales for the Oct. 30-31 event.

Breeders’ Cup officials said that approximately 24,000 tickets will be made available March 4 through the organization’s website and via telephone, with 18,200 of those tickets providing “access to a view of the track.” In addition to grandstand admission, reserved seating, and access to specific areas of the grandstand and clubhouse – including temporary box seating planned for the apron – the Breeders’ Cup is selling tickets to locations on the property that will not give ticketholders a live view of the races, such as tailgate areas, a first for the event.

No walk-up tickets will be sold, and all available tickets are expected to be gone shortly after going on sale. Breeders’ Cup and Keeneland said that the 24,000 tickets on sale March 4 represent approximately half of the total tickets the organizations plan to sell for the event, with the other half reserved for horsemen, owners, sponsors, and other groups and individuals.

Tickets for the Breeders’ Cup event are expected to be in high demand due to the limited availability and Keeneland’s location in the heart of horse country. Keeneland is a highly popular destination for even non-racing fans, many of whom crowd the track’s grandstand on the weekend seeking nothing more than the occasional wager and a vibrant social scene. The Breeders’ Cup will take place at the end of Keeneland’s elongated fall meet.

Jim Gluckson, a spokesman for the Breeders’ Cup, said on Wednesday that the Breeders’ Cup expects 32,000 fans in total to have access “to a view of the racetrack” on both days of the event.

The 2015 event will be the first to be held at Keeneland. Record attendance for the Breeders’ Cup was set in 1998 at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., at 80,452.

Excluding package deals, tickets for the Friday card will range from $35 to $375, and tickets for Saturday’s card will range from $50 to $475, the Breeders’ Cup said. The cheapest tickets will provide access for one vehicle to either of two tailgate areas surrounding the Keene Barn on the eastern edge of the property, according to the organizations. There will be limits to how many tickets an individual can buy March 4.

The Breeders’ Cup website on Wednesday listed two-day general-admission packages allowing for access to the first floor of the grandstand for $100 (a single-day ticket for Friday will cost $40, and a single-day ticket for Saturday will cost $60). The general-admission tickets do not include a reserved seat.

Other popular areas of the grandstand, such as the second-floor Sports Bar, will be converted into reserved areas for standing-room only, according to the website. Tickets for access to the Sports Bar will cost $140 on Friday and $200 on Saturday.

Grandstand boxes, which seat six, will cost $5,400 per box, according to the website. The boxes will be specially constructed for the event, the Breeders’ Cup said. Reserved seating in the grandstand will cost $425 per seat for a two-day package.

Seating also will be made available in the sales pavilion just downhill from the Keeneland grandstand, at $150 for Friday and $300 for Saturday, and in the Keene Barn, at $125 for Friday and $200 for Saturday. Ticketholders in the sales pavilion will be allowed into the facility to view races from the track’s apron, the organizations said.

The Breeders’ Cup also said that parking will be limited to 2,500 cars and available only to those whose tickets include parking credentials. Shuttles to the event will run from the Kentucky Horse Park north of Lexington and the Whitaker Bank Ballpark just northwest of downtown, the release said.