For the first time, the Maker’s Mark bottle, which commemorates the Lane’s End Stakes at Turfway Park, will honor an entire team: the 1990 World Series champion Cincinnati Reds. This limited edition bottle is the seventh in a series honoring Turfway’s Kentucky Derby prep race.
The 2010 bottle pays tribute to the 20th anniversary of the Reds’ wire-to-wire season and stunning four-game sweep of the Oakland A’s. The label of the 375 ml bottle features the famous photo, taken by then director of publicity Jon Braude, of the champions celebrating on the field. The bottle is hand-numbered and dipped in red wax.
Led by team captain Barry Larkin, the 1990 Reds spent the entire regular season in first place, defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates in six games to take the National League title, and then tore into the heavily favored A’s. Larkin, Eric Davis, Chris Sabo, Paul O’Neill, and Billy Hatcher powered the team at the plate, while Jose Rijo, Tom Browning, Jack Armstrong, Danny Jackson, and the bullpen’s Nasty Boys—Rob Dibble, Norm Charlton, and Randy Myers—intimidated opponents from the mound.
Maker’s Mark is producing an unprecedented number, 8000, of these commemorative bottles, the most since the series started in 2004. The bottles are to go on sale Friday, March 19 and will retail for about $24 depending on the retail outlet. Proceeds from sales will benefit the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum.
The bottle signing at Turfway Park is Saturday, March 27, the morning of the Lane’s End Stakes. The signing is from 8 AM to 11 AM at Turfway Park, Gate B. 400 free tickets will be distributed on a first come-first served basis, to persons 21 years and older and one ticket per person. Each ticketholder may bring two of the 2010 bottles to be autographed.
The 39th running of the Grade II Lane’s End Stakes is a 1 1/8-mile race for Thoroughbreds aiming for the Kentucky Derby. With its $500,000 purse, the race virtually guarantees the winner a spot in the Derby field, which is limited to 20 starters. This year’s Lane’s End Stakes is set for Saturday, March 27, at Turfway Park. Tickets for the race range from general admission at $10 to the Maker’s Mark VIP Tent at $175 and are available by calling (859) 371-0200.
The Lane’s End Stakes is sponsored by Lane’s End of Versailles, Kentucky., one of the world’s leading Thoroughbred operations and first among North America’s stud farms for 10 years, seven consecutively. The farm stands such influential stallions as A. P. Indy, Smart Strike, Kingmambo, and two-time Horse of the Year Curlin. Lane’s End is owned by William S. Farish, former United States ambassador to the Court of St. James’s. Farish was honored earlier this year with the Eclipse Award of Merit for outstanding lifetime achievement in the Thoroughbred industry.
As part of the bottle introduction, the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum will host a grand opening celebration of its new exhibit: 1990-A Celebration of the 1990 World Champion Cincinnati Reds on March 25 at the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum. Reds Hall of Famers and select members of the 1990 team will be in attendance. The evening will consist of dinner and a question and answer session with the 1990 players. Admission is $80 for the general public. Reds Hall of Fame members and Maker’s Mark Ambassadors may purchase tickets at the discounted price of $70. Tickets are available for purchase by calling 513-765-7923.