04/29/2013 11:37AM

Kentucky Oaks to be sponsored by Longines

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Longines, the watch-making company, has reached a long-term agreement with Churchill Downs Inc. that will give the company the naming rights for the Kentucky Oaks, Churchill announced on Monday.

Longines, which is headquartered in Switzerland, has been a sponsor of Churchill’s Derby events for several years and has naming-rights agreements with a number of foreign events, including the Prix de l’Opera in France and the Grosser Preis Von Baden in Germany. The company had previously been the Official Watch and Timekeeper of the Kentucky Derby, a title it will retain in the new agreement, Churchill said, as well as taking on the title of the Official Timekeeper of Churchill Downs Racetrack.

As part of the deal, Longines will also be the sponsor of the Churchill Distaff Turf Mile on Kentucky Derby day. Winning connections of races on the Oaks and Derby cards will be presented with watches made by the company, and Longines will also sponsor several events revolving around the Derby and Oaks, including the Kentucky Oaks Fashion Contest, Churchill said.