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2005 Kentucky Derby Road to the Roses Fantasy Game Underway

8 February 2005

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- Can you pick the next Smarty Jones? Can you select the Derby winner, jockey and trainer, weeks before the first Saturday in May? If you are up to the challenge, play the 2005 Kentucky Derby Road to the Roses fantasy game - a free, Internet-based game of skill offered by Churchill Downs Incorporated (Nasdaq:CHDN). You will compete with thousands of fans for great prizes, including a VIP trip to the Kentucky Derby, three qualifying entries to the NTRA/DRF Handicapping Championship, a plasma flat-screen television and exclusive merchandise.

Now in its eighth year, the Road to the Roses is an online fantasy game that allows race fans to create a stable of Kentucky Derby hopefuls teamed with accomplished jockeys and top trainers. Participants manage their 'stable' through a series of Kentucky Derby prep races, starting with the Risen Star Stakes (Grade III) at the Fair Grounds on Saturday, Feb. 12, and concluding with the 131st running of the Kentucky Derby (GI) at Churchill Downs on Saturday, May 7, 2005.

Registration for the 2005 Road to the Roses, which can be found online at, opened Feb. 6 at midnight EST. Fans can register through March 31, 2005, at 11:59 p.m., although the first scoring race will be held on Saturday, Feb. 12. The online game is owned and operated by CDI.

"Road to the Roses offers a user-friendly, fantasy-game experience that takes patrons for an exciting ride along the Derby trail," said Steve Fugitte, the Company's vice president of racing information. "Last year, nearly 20,000 players took part in the contest, from the casual fan to experienced handicappers. This year, we expect to draw even more participants with new prizes and an easier to navigate site."

Players create their mythical stables by selecting 10 horses from the Visa Triple Crown-nominated list of 358 horses, along with two jockeys and two trainers. Points are awarded based on how well the stable performs in a series of 35 races leading up to and including the Kentucky Derby. Players are required to select five "active" horses for each weekend of prep races and have two opportunities to add horses to their roster during supplemental drafts.

Ever-popular game features, such as the "Off the Trail," and "Meet the Pros," are back this year and allow players to stay up-to-date on Derby contenders-in-training while comparing their handicapping abilities to the celebrities, journalists, horse-racing analysts and professionals managing their own fantasy stables. In building their stable, fans can reference the Top 20 lists from expert handicappers like Roxy Roxborough and CDI's Fugitte.

This year's grand-prize winner will receive a VIP trip for two to the 132nd Kentucky Oaks and Derby (May 5 and May 6, 2006). The grand prize package includes two (2) third-floor reserved seats for Oaks and Derby; access to Millionaire's Row; roundtrip airfare; three nights' hotel accommodations; a qualifying entry to the 2006 DRF/NTRA Handicapping Championship with hotel and airfare to Las Vegas; and a 30-inch Plasma Flat Screen Television Monitor courtesy of Gateway Computers.

The Kentucky Derby Road to the Roses fantasy challenge is free and available to citizens in the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada, except where restrictions apply. For a complete list of rules, visit

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