Courses for both races move back to Kentucky
November 14, 2023, Louisville, KY. – More than just horses will be running for roses next spring! For the first time, every participant of the GE Appliances miniMarathon and Marathon will receive a rose after crossing the Finish Line at the race on Saturday, April 27, 2024. This rose is front and center on the Finisher’s Medal to commemorate Kentucky’s largest day of road racing and celebrate the historic 150th Kentucky Derby. Kentucky Derby Festival teamed up with Churchill Downs on the design of this year’s unique medal, which spotlights the Kentucky Derby’s signature color palette with a red rose set against a black background complemented by gold accents.
“GE Appliances miniMarathon and Marathon have become Kentucky’s other big race. The lap inside Churchill Downs is part of our racing tradition and something runners look forward to every year,” said Matt Gibson, Kentucky Derby Festival President & CEO. “This Finisher’s Medal is not only recognition for their amazing achievement but also a collector’s piece that salutes a historic time in our city.”
The Kentucky Derby has been linked to the rose for more than 125 years, with the iconic Garland of Roses having been draped around the winning horse’s neck since 1932.
“Churchill Downs is thrilled that this year, as we prepare for the 150th Run for the Roses, thousands of athletes from all over the country and world will have the opportunity to run for their rose in the Derby Festival races,” said Tonya Abeln, Vice President of Communications for Churchill Downs Incorporated. “We hope with each stride they find inspiration in following the path of the great runners before them, Secretariat, Citation, Barbaro—so many legends who have contributed to the magic of the Kentucky Derby.”
2024 marks the 51st annual GE Appliances miniMarathon and the 23rd run of the GE Appliances Marathon. Runners from all 50 states and several countries come to Louisville on the last Saturday in April.
“Whether you’re an avid runner looking to qualify for the Boston Marathon, collecting medals from every state or taking that first step, this race means something to every person who crosses the finish line,” said Kevin Nolan, President and CEO of GE Appliances, a Haier Company, who returns as the Title Sponsor of the event for the third straight year. “Whether it’s finishing at the top, hitting a PR or just finishing the race – every person who crosses the finish line is a winner because sometimes that race we’re running has nothing to do with the time we finish. It’s bigger than that, and that’s what makes running so special.”
The courses for both the GE Appliances miniMarathon and Marathon are also moving back to Kentucky for the first time since the 2019 event. The Marathon has been split between Kentucky and Southern Indiana since the pandemic. 2024 will mark the return of the full Marathon to Louisville’s South End.
“Our race has a long history with Iroquois Park and the neighborhoods along Southern Parkway and it’s something we know our runners have missed,” said Chris Martini, Kentucky Derby Festival Race Director.
“We look forward to taking the Marathon course back to its roots for 2024 and know the community and South Louisville will come out and cheer on our runners.”
All participants will run through Churchill Downs and experience the sights and sounds of downtown Louisville, the historic Old Louisville neighborhood, and parts of the picturesque Olmsted Park System, among other attractions. The in-person races start simultaneously at 7 a.m. on Saturday, April 27, on Main Street, near Slugger Field, and then finish on Adams Street, just outside of the Lynn Family Stadium, the Official Finish Line for both the mini and Marathon. The complete course map and details will be available to runners in the coming weeks.
The race, which attracts 10-12,000 runners to Louisville every spring has also become a tradition for many employees of GE Appliances. To celebrate Derby 150, they’ll have a team of 150 employees taking part in the event.
“Louisville has been our home for 70 years and to experience this race course that features all the best this city has to offer is something to see,” Nolan said. “From running through Churchill Downs, experiencing Louisville’s historic neighborhoods or grabbing a bourbon at the Finish Line, this race is unique to any other race in the country. We can’t wait to welcome lots of folks to see what Louisville has to offer and why it’s our home.”
To help runners go the distance, Norton Sports Health is back with its FREE Training Program. Registration opens online on Tuesday, November 14 at DerbyFestivalMarathon.com. This program is packed with in-person training options to get participants ready for race day.
Race registration is open online. Current rates are $75 for the miniMarathon and $85 for the Marathon. In addition to the miniMarathon (half marathon) and the full Marathon, the Derby Festival is also offering a Marathon Relay ($325) for teams of 3 to 5 runners, as well as the virtual miniMarathon & Marathon ($50) for those who prefer to run at their own pace. More information is available at DerbyFestivalMarathon.com, along with FAQs to help answer questions about the 2024 event.
GE Appliances is the Title Sponsor of the miniMarathon and Marathon. Official Race Medical Provider & Training Partner: Norton Sports Health. Contributing Sponsors are Churchill Downs, Kentucky Department of Tourism, Louisville Water Company and Powerade. Official Finish Line Sponsor: Louisville City FC/Racing Louisville FC. Official Bourbon Retail Partner: Evergreen Liquors. Official Refuel Partner: Prairie Farms. Official Hotel: The Galt House.
About Kentucky Derby Festival
2024 marks the 69th year for the Kentucky Derby Festival. The Festival is an independent community organization supported by 4,000 volunteers, more than 400 businesses and civic groups, Pegasus Pin sponsorships and event participation. It entertains more than 1.5 million people every spring and has a local economic impact of more than $127 million. This involvement has made the Festival the largest single attended event in Kentucky and one of the leading community celebrations in the world.
About GE Appliances, a Haier Company
At GE Appliances, a Haier company, we come together to make “good things, for life.” We’re creators, thinkers and makers who believe that anything is possible and that there’s always a better way. We’re a company powered by our people, made stronger through our diversity — allowing us to grow closer than ever before to our owners, anticipate their needs and enhance their lives. We’re certified as a U.S. Great Place to Work ™, named one of the Best Companies for Multicultural Women by Seramount (formerly Working Mother Media), Achievers Top 50 Most Engaged Workplaces, received a perfect score for the fourth year in a row on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index, and named one of the top 100 Internship Programs by Way Up.
Since 1907, we’ve built innovative, quality products that are trusted in half of all U.S. homes. We sell appliances under the Monogram®, Café™, GE Profile™, GE®, Haier and Hotpoint brands. Our products include refrigerators, freezers, cooking products, dishwashers, washers, dryers, wine & beverage centers, air conditioners, small appliances, water filtration systems and water heaters.
To learn more about our company, our brands, our Corporate Citizenship efforts, our economic impact, and working for GE Appliances visit geappliancesco.com.