American Marketer

Travel and hospitality

Sentient Jet gallops into Kentucky Derby as aviation partner

April 23, 2018

Sentient Jet is continuing its partnership with the Kentucky Derby. Image credit: Saks Fifth Avenue


Private aviation firm Sentient Jet is continuing its support of horse racing at this year’s Kentucky Derby by offering air travel and hospitality.

As the preferred private aviation partner of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve, Longines Kentucky Oaks, and Churchill Downs Racetrack, Sentient Jet will power the Derby Air travel services. Due to the prestige and positioning of horse racing, many luxury brands get in on the action with sponsorships and experiences surrounding such events.

“We are honored to reaffirm our longstanding support of the horseracing community, which so many of our cardholders are involved in, by continuing our partnership with one of private aviation’s most popular sporting events, the Kentucky Derby,” said Andrew Collins, president and CEO of Sentient Jet, in a statement. “We look forward to another exciting weekend of races in Louisville at horseracing’s most highly anticipated event and are thrilled to offer Cardholders the most convenient and luxurious way to enjoy the races from start to finish.”

Horse racing hospitality
Sentient Jet signed a multi-year deal with the Kentucky Derby in 2016. The 2018 race marks the third year that the aviator will have a presence at the event.

The brand will present a Derby Day Breakfast to kick off the races on May 5 for cardholders.

Sentient Jet ambassador Bobby Flay will cook up dishes such as Johnny cake waffles with blackberry butter, a peach and pecan salad and bourbon maple syrup. These will be paired with specialty cocktails such as a blood orange mimosa.

Mr. Flay is a horseracing fan who has purchased interests in thoroughbreds competing in the Triple Crown. During the breakfast, Mr. Flay will share his betting tips with attendees.

“There’s no place like Kentucky for enjoying a day at the races. Home to the Bourbon Trail and a long legacy of thoroughbreds, it’s the ultimate destination for celebrating the sport,” said Flay. “I’m looking forward to kicking off one of the most exciting sporting events with Sentient Jet this spring with a breakfast inspired by the heart of horseracing country.”

As part of its partnership, Sentient Jet will run a Derby Air service, allowing consumers who are not cardholders to book private air travel to Louisville, KY. The service also does not require the commitment of purchasing a jet card.

While in the air, guests will enjoy a special cocktail by Mr. Flay.

Expanding the hospitality to the ground, Sentient cardholders will be able to buy tickets to venues at the Derby during a pre-sale.

Sentient Jet sponsored Nyquist. Image credit: Sentient Jet

The Kentucky Derby is one aspect of Sentient's relationship to racing.

In 2016, the brand supported racehorse Nyquist’s successful quest for the Derby, and despite his less successful run at the Preakness Stakes (see story), the company has announced it will sponsor the horse for the length of his career. Sentient’s show of loyalty depicts a company that honors relationships, a fitting message for a service provider (see story).