Woodford Reserve will be the headline sponsor at next years Kentucky Derby

Woodford Reserve will be the headline sponsor at next year's Kentucky Derby

Brown-Forman has entered into a mutli-brand, multi-year sponsorship deal with the Kentucky Derby and racetrack Churchill Downs as it strengthens its ties with the event.

The company said yesterday that, as part of a five-year deal, the race will be referred to as the "the Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve", starting in 2018.  Woodford Reserve has been the official Bourbon of the Kentucky Derby since 1999.  

Woodford Reserve will also be the presenting sponsor of the 'Road to the Kentucky Derby', the series of 37 races that determine the eligibility of horses to compete in the race, the company said.

Other Brown-Forman brands will take part in the sponsorship, including Old Forester returning as the "official mint julep of the Kentucky Derby".

"On Derby Day, Woodford Reserve will be an integral part of the... experience of the Kentucky Derby," Brown-Forman said. "Woodford Reserve will leverage all of the partnerships associated with the Kentucky Derby, Churchill Downs and the Road to the Kentucky Derby, including the NBC tie-in and signage throughout the track."

The Kentucky Derby is a race for three-year-old thoroughbreds. The event has a US$2m purse. The 144th running will take place on 5 May 2018. 

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