All Hail Kegasus!

Published: March 29, 2011 02:27 pm EDT

On the heels of its controversial 2010 'Get Your Preak On' campaign, Pimlico Race Course has unveiled its mascot for the 136th edition of the Preakness Stakes. And, if you like over-the-top characters, then this one is just for you


He resides in a stall with both a tapped keg and a cheezie-laden feeder at close nudging. Yes indeed folks, you will be getting to know 'Kegasus' a little better leading up to the second leg of the U.S. Triple Crown for thoroughbreds this year. The Preakness will head to post on Saturday, May 21 at the Maryland raceway.

According to the official website for 'The InfieldFest,' the story of Kegasus explains that the racing-obsessed centaur is 'half man, half thoroughbred, all party manimal.' It also states that he is son of Preaknesius, aka 'the God of Thoroughbred Racing,' and that Kegasus was birthed by a local server -- the 'Lady of the Bottomless Refill' -- who resided in a Baltimore Suburb.

Kegasus' pedigree ties into a promotion which is being held in the Preakness infield that day. For $20, customers are part of the 'Mug Club,' which would see a bottomless cup (goblet?) of beer for those wishing to indulge.

The promotion is being pushed hard by Preakness organizers. Kegasus is currently tapping his hooves on Twitter, has become fodder for many blog posters, and has quickly appeared on YouTube.

Maryland Jockey Club President Tom Chuckas has also chimed in on Kegasus, as has quoted him as saying, “Kegasus speaks directly to our InfieldFest demographic with his no-nonsense personality and total embodiment of a good time.”

The official website also states that upon Kegasus' birth, the gods rejoiced and wept tears of joy which fell to the Pimlico infield, which created the magical garden of beer. Kegasus is said to roam the infield, leading the way for epic good times.

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Jack Darling is on a very short list of people involved in the race game who actually gets it and it is refreshing to see a high profile trainer who understands that for the game to not only survive but move forward they have to not only be able to attract the next generation of gamblers to the track but they have to be able to get them to come back over and over again and to do that the takeout has to be reduced so it is in line with other forms of gambling.

You are one of a select few who understands that the customer/gambler matters.

This is exactly the type of thing we need in harness racing. This particular promotion is aimed at a young audience that doesn't normally go the the horse races. That infield will be packed. What a great lineup of entertainment!! Hopefully some of these new possible horse racing customers will enjoy the horses and the racing and become interested in our product. (And yes, I think lowering the takeout for them is a good idea- I think its coming)

Toby, do you think the money in the pocket of who you term 'the lowest common denominator' is not green??

You have to laugh at horsepeople. They want the game to improve, thrive, whatever... just so long as they don't have to do anything!

In reply to by PeterS

Hi Peter,
I wasn't referring to anybody in particular as the lowest common denominator, but as a previous post mentions, drunken toilet races in the infield, in my humble opinion, will not do much to improve an ailing industry's image. This is the Sport of Kings, not the Sport of Fools. If horse racing wants to become a beer commercial that's fine, but it will have to compete against giants like UFC and NASCAR. Why not explore its own niche in the marketplace and build on its rich and entertaining history? Just my own philosophy. No need to laugh at anybody.

Infieldfest at the Preakness is one of the wildest parties you can ever imagine. The ruunning of the toilets is a sight to behold. Picture 1000's of drunken college kids throwing beers at people running across the top of a line of 50 porta pottys. Not sure how that is promoting horseracing but it sure is one heck of a spectacle.

Gary Blackburn

If Kegasus believes in reduced takeout then i am pro Kegasus:)

Brilliant! Finally, a marketing strategy obviously targetting the demographic we know we have to target - young people (males) with money to spend looking for a good time! If nothing else it will get people talking. Hats off to the people at Pimlico for trying to do something to open up a new market that we so desperately need. If we don't give them what they're looking for, they'll find it somewhere else.

Well, I guess crap really is king. A way better ad campaign would be to anthropomorphicize past champions like Secretariat or Northern Dancer. At least keep it all above the lowest common denominator.

If it's come down to this to get people to the track then I am afraid racing is done.

Ridiculous goes without saying. Although, it will be interesting to see if it is effective in getting more people to the track, raising handle and possibly creating fans of the game. I suppose the proof will be in the pudding.

Hey Spencer...Let's book Kegasus for Industry Day...Then Grandy could let his mane down a bit!



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