NEW ORLEANS (Sunday, November 29, 2009) – Early Bird nominations for the March 27 Grade II, $750,000 Louisiana Derby Presented by Miller Lite close Dec. 14. A nomination to the Louisiana Derby also serves as a nomination to the first two races in the Road to the Derby series, the Grade III, $300,000 Risen Star Stakes on Feb. 20 and the Grade III, $100,000 Lecomte Stakes on Jan. 23.

Any horse that starts in both the Risen Star and the Louisiana Derby and finishes among the top three in either race will have its $25,000 starting fee waived for the Kentucky Derby.

This season’s Louisiana Derby, for 3-year-olds (foals of 2007), has been lengthened to 1 1/8 miles and is positioned five weeks out from the May 1 Kentucky Derby.

Final nominations to the Louisiana Derby will be accepted until March 13, 2010, for $750, with additional fess of $3,700 to pass the entry box and $3,700 to start. Supplemental nominations will be accepted at the time of entry, including entry and starting fees, for $25,000.

To acquire a Louisiana Derby Early Bird nomination form, or for more information, contact the Fair Grounds Racing Office at 1-800-786-0010.