LEXINGTON, KY (WTVQ) – Considered the final race in the grand slam of horse racing, the 2020 Breeders’ Cup will be held without fans. The race is to be held at Keeneland this year on November 6 and 7. In 2015 over two days, the Breeders’ Cup brought in more than 95,000 spectators
Breeders’ Cup CEO Drew Fleming pinned the below letter to racing fans.
“To the fans and supporters of Breeders’ Cup,
From the moment the COVID-19 pandemic began changing the world as we know it, we have been closely monitoring the evolving pandemic and its potential impact on the 2020 Breeders’ Cup World Championships. The health and safety of our fans, participants, employees, athletes and the public at large have always been our top priorities and continue to guide all of our decisions. In recent weeks, and in working closely with Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear, local officials and public health experts, it has become clear that to accomplish these goals we must alter our plans for the upcoming World Championships.
As such, we have made the difficult decision to conduct the 2020 World Championships without fans in attendance. I can assure you that this decision was not made lightly and that I am just as disappointed about these unfortunate circumstances as anyone, given that this unusual year will mark my first Breeders’ Cup as President and CEO. However, especially considering the international nature of the event, we simply cannot jeopardize the health and safety of our fans and the local Lexington community.
We sincerely apologize for this inconvenience and thank you for your patience as we fully assessed all available options. All 2020 ticket purchasers will be receiving a full refund and can click here for complete refund information.
Looking ahead, today we also announced that the Breeders’ Cup World Championships will be returning to Keeneland in 2022. The local community and loyal fans like you deserve the opportunity to experience the event at its full potential and we are delighted to be coming back to Lexington in just two short years.
No one could have predicted the uncertain times we find ourselves in today. While we are disappointed by these developments, we recognize the need to be responsible citizens and to do our part to take care of one another. We are still committed to showcasing the world’s best racing and creating a thrilling event for all our fans worldwide to view from home. Our team is working hard with our partners at NBC Sports to deliver exciting and unique enhancements to the at-home viewing experience for the 2020 World Championships. We look forward to sharing those with you on November 6 and 7. While you will not be able to be at Keeneland, we will do our best to bring Keeneland to you.
We hope that you and your family are, and remain, healthy and safe, and we thank you again for being a loyal fan of the Breeders’ Cup. We look forward to welcoming you to experience the Breeders’ Cup World Championships in person again when the time is right.”