LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- It's Kentucky Derby week, but do you have your tickets for Derby and Oaks? WDRB's Sterling Riggs explores some ticket buying options and reveals what's illegal when selling tickets in Kentucky.
Buying a last minute ticket to the "Run for the Roses" will be a challenge, but not impossible. We tracked down John Asher to help us out. He's the Vice President of Communications at Churchill Downs.
"Your best bet is online at KentuckyDerby.com. We have something new this year. We are working with Ticket Master. They are our official ticket vendor. It's called Kentucky Derby Exchange. People can buy verified tickets to the Oaks and Derby online. You can get those tickets barcoded so there's no risk when you show up on Derby Day," said Asher.
A great thing about the new ticket exchange is you don't have to allow time for shipping. All tickets will be sent electronically and scanned at the gate from your mobile device. Churchill Downs will also mail a commemorative ticket after the Derby.
You can also try web-sites like Stub Hub, and an Indiana based company called Derby Box. You will possibly pay more if you choose this option and allow time for shipping.
There are more risky avenues like Craigslist, but be careful. You may be able to negotiate a better price, but going through a non-credible vendor puts you at risk of buying counterfeit tickets.
It's also very important to know that it's illegal to scalp tickets in Kentucky. Tickets cannot be resold for more than the price printed on the ticket in the Commonwealth.
However, if you head across the river to Indiana, it is legal to sell tickets for above face value.
If you really want to gamble before you ever see the first race, there will always be people around the track trying to dump extra tickets.
But these people can be sparse and illegal scalpers typically buy the tickets first.
"We always have people show up at the admission gates, and they have tickets that are not good. We do our best to help those people. But for many, the dream of coming to the Derby is shattered," said Asher.
For the record, the best time to purchase Oaks and Derby tickets is when Churchill Downs holds a pre-sale in November. The sale is open to anyone who registers in advance on Churchill Down's website.
CLICK HERE for the Derby Exchange.
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