Willis Horton's Will Take Charge notched his first stakes victory Jan. 21 when he got the best of eight other 3-year-olds in the $150,000 Smarty Jones Stakes at Oaklawn Park.
The West Virginia Racing Commission Jan. 18 approved allocation of more than $1 million in purse and bonus money for this year's grade II West Virginia Derby, and also allowed for race schedule changes at Mountaineer.
The Maryland Jockey Club has put horsemen on notice regarding the shipping of horses to race at other tracks in the region.
Tom LaMarra and Pete Denk handicap the Lecomte Stakes and Sunshine Millions Classic this weekend. watch video
Live and simulcast wagering on races at Delaware Park in 2012 totaled $116,771,915, down 22.08% from $149,862,434 in 2011, according to statistics released by the Delaware Thoroughbred Racing Commission Jan. 17.
Penn National Gaming Inc. has signed a lease to renovate a former restaurant in Gloucester Township and turn it into New Jersey's fifth off-track wagering facility, the company announced Jan. 16.
Canterbury Park's first condition book for 2013 shows yet another increase in purses, with about $12 million to be paid out during its Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse meet.
The number of Thoroughbred broodmares registered in Ohio in 2012 jumped 53.9% from 2011 to 2012, according to Ohio State Racing Commission statistics.
Pinnacle Entertainment, which owns River Downs, has begun demolishing racing structures and digging up the one-mile dirt track.
The Ohio State Racing Commission put racetrack casino developers on notice Jan. 10 when, at a hearing, members expressed strong displeasure with the racing aspects of the proposed Miami Valley Gaming and Racing facility.
A shift in slot machine revenue from horse racing to other programs in Pennsylvania is set to expire this summer, and the Pennsylvania Equine Coalition Jan. 8 urged lawmakers to honor the sunset provision.
- By Tom LaMarra
Ramblings about pari-mutuel takeout rates, handle, slots, data, and whatever else. read blog
Despite a slight decline in wagering in December, total pari-mutuel handle on United States racing in 2012 was up 0.96%, the first increase since 2006, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators.
Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course reported a 19.4% increase in all-sources pari-mutuel handle for 197 live racing days in 2012. Meanwhile, total purses jumped 11.6%.
The New York Racing Fan Advisory Council has released its formal recommendations for ways to improve horse racing in the state, and at the top of the list is lower pari-mutuel takeout.
Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races reported that, for the first time in the track's 79 years of operation, average daily pari-mutuel handle topped the $1 million mark.
- By Tom LaMarra
Tom and Pete handicap the Daytona Stakes at Santa Anita Park. watch video
Turfway Park is following through with its plan to increase purses across the board when its winter/spring meet begins Jan. 1, 2013. The new condition book at the Kentucky racetrack reflects increases of 13% to about 35%.
Tom and Pete look at the performance of 2-year-olds in 2012 and discuss who holds promise for a shot at the Triple Crown. watch video
The Kentucky Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association and Turfway Park are working together to determine whether there is enough interest in having the racetrack stay open for summer stabling and training.
Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course, seeking to add more punch to its open stakes schedule, has added a $500,000 event for 3-year-olds on the turf at one mile in 2013.
Indiana Downs is one step closer to becoming the sole location for Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing in the state.
- By Tom LaMarra
Tom and Pete preview the CashCall Futurity. Watch Video
The Ohio State Racing Commission Dec. 13 approved the distribution of more than $1.77 million in revenue racing has received from non-track casinos in the state.
Beulah Park and the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association have agreed on 2013 live racing days, but approval of a shift of the River Downs meet to Beulah Park remains on hold.
Negotiations continued Dec. 12 among the Ohio parties involved in a possible shift of the River Downs meet to Beulah Park in 2013.
National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association affiliates in Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia have announced results of elections for their boards of directors.
Two lawmakers in leadership positions in the Kentucky General Assembly said Dec. 10 the issue of expanded gambling remains on the table, but whether a bill materializes depends on Gov. Steve Beshear.
Dust and Diamonds produced a quick return on her purchase at auction in November with an easy victory in the $100,000 Sugar Swirl Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park Dec. 8.
Racing jurisdictions and racetracks are making some headway on tightening the screws on integrity in the sport, though one official Dec. 6 described it as a "minefield" due to legal issues and court fights.
The Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau is making progress on its plan to roll out what it calls the "Tote Security System" in the fall of 2013, an official said Dec. 4.
Dale Romans received the Big Sport of Turfdom Award during a lunch held in conjunction with the University of Arizona Global Symposium on Racing and Gaming Dec. 5 in Tucson.
In this age of racetrack casinos, the message is very clear: Increase the focus on pari-mutuel wagering and don't consider gaming revenue for purses and other programs an entitlement.
This year's Mark Kaufman Workshop presented by the Turf Publicists of America Dec. 4 during the University of Arizona Global Symposium on Racing and Gaming tackled the topic of the new racing media.
Operators of online racing and sports fantasy games said Dec. 4 the time is now for the horse racing industry to capitalize on them to develop fans and generate new revenue.
Representatives of horse racing in foreign countries said Dec. 4 there are some issues with importing simulcasts of races from the United States, but when it comes to bettors, field size usually wins out over everything.
The awarding of 2013 Thoroughbred racing dates in Ohio has stalled given the fact the meet at River Downs may have to move to Beulah Park because of construction of a new racetrack gaming facility.
The purse for the grade II Charles Town Classic will increase to $1.5 million in 2013 and award the winner $1 million under a revised payment structure.
Republican Kentucky Sen. Damon Thayer, who has been involved with most legislation involving the horse industry in recent years, was elected majority floor leader Nov. 28 during a GOP Senate leadership caucus.
Two Pennsylvania racetrack gaming companies are among the six bidders for a license to build a non-racetrack casino in Philadelphia.
Canterbury Park will offer a 69-day Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse meet in 2013, and purses will increase 25% from 2012 levels, officials said.
- By Tom LaMarra
Tom and Pete handicap the Delta Downs Jackpot. watch video
There will be 77 Thoroughbred racing dates for 2013 under a schedule approved by the New Jersey Racing Commission Nov. 14. The dates were approved pending a review of the minutes of the meeting by Gov. Chris Christie.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association reported that 41 of the 44 federal candidates it supported through its political action committee in 2011-12 won their seats in the Nov. 6 election.
Tom and Pete handicap the Cardinal Handicap at Churchill Downs this week. Watch Video
Churchill Downs Inc. officials said Nov. 6 the company had a "decent" third quarter in 2012 and is poised for growth in 2013-14.
Morton Fink's Wise Dan squarely put himself in the mix for a variety of championships this year with a superior course-record victory in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park Nov. 3.
The weather for Nov. 3, the second day of the Breeders' Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Park should be ideal.
Besilu Stables' Royal Delta took control after an early scramble for the lead and never looked back en route to a strong victory in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park Nov. 2.
Breeders' Cup is prepared to take a hit in pari-mutuel handle given the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast even though many wagering outlets were back in operation Nov. 2.
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