All-sources handle for the recently-concluded 64-day Belmont Park spring/summer meet decreased 13.9% from 2008 totals, in contrast with industry-wide decreases of 16.9% in June, and 10.5% through the first six months of 2009 compared to 2008 figures. Incessant rain throughout the meet resulted in 77 races taken off the turf and many more turf races which could not be carded.
Although Churchill Downs Inc. posted a slight increase in revenue during the second quarter of 2009 despite the depressed economic picture with the U.S., the racetrack operating company's president and CEO said the "results from our racing operations were disappointing."
On Oct. 1 at 7:00 p.m., the Keene Entertainment Center will transform into a vintage jazz age "Racino Grande" complete with casino-style charitable gaming to benefit the Blue Grass Farms Chaplaincy.
Six horses have died from catastrophic breakdowns at Del Mar during a 10-day span that includes the first week of racing. Three occurred during morning training on Polytrack, two happened during races on Polytrack, and one was in a turf race.
Hollywood Oaks (gr. II) winner Carlsbad makes her turf debut as the 120-pound high weight in the $150,000 San Clemente Handicap (gr. IIT) at Del Mar Aug. 1.
Favored Hot Dixie Chick showed she was more than a speed freak in the $111,000 Schuylerville Stakes (gr. III), rating patiently just off the pace before grabbing the lead and then pulling away to a 6 1/4 length victory July 29, the opening day of the Saratoga meeting in upstate New York.
Ed Halpern, executive director and general counsel for the California Thoroughbred Trainers, plans to retire after his contract expires in December, the organization announced.
On-track and all-sources handle were up significantly over 2008 totals as Saratoga Race Course opened its 141st season July 29.
Churchill Downs Inc. released its second-quarter results after the close of the stock market July 29, with a slight increase in earnings due to its advance deposit wagering system and slot-machine gaming.
Del Mar officials announced that figures for the Southern California track's first week of its summer meet was up in both on-track attendance and on-track handle.
On Aug. 1, Forever Together seeks to become only the fifth horse to put together back-to-back victories in the $500,000 Diana Stakes (gr. IT), a feat that only Glowing Honor (1988-89), Shuvee (1970-71), Tempted (1959-60) and Miss Grillo (1946-47) have been able to accomplish in the 71 previous editions of the 1 1/8- mile turf race.
A sore foot could keep Atomic Rain from taking on BlackBerry Preakness (gr. I) winner Rachel Alexandra and Belmont Stakes (gr. I) winner Summer Bird in the Aug. 2 Haskell Invitational (gr. I) at Monmouth Park.
Richard and Frances Hessee, owners of R & R Farms near Goliad, Texas, have purchased trainer Robert Holthus' Kilkerry Farm and Training Center near Royal, Ark.
Horse racing's second season hits a high point Aug. 29 with the running of the $1-million Shadwell Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga, and this Saturday at Saratoga seven 3-year-olds will assemble for the 46th running of the $500,000 Jim Dandy Stakes (gr. II).
Saskawea, a two-time stakes winner on the Woodbine turf, faces four older fillies and mares in the $150,000 Royal North Stakes (Can-IIIT) Aug. 1 in Toronto.
Dubai champion Victory Moon was euthanized July 26 after fracturing a hind leg in his stall.
Colonial Downs' 40-day summer race meet came to a close the night of July 28, as the leading trainer, owner, jockey, and apprentice rider were all awarded for their successes.
The connections of top dirt sprinter Fabulous Strike took a pass on the $200,000 Pennsylvania Governor's Cup, but the handicap lured a full field of turf sprinters that rank among the best at East Coast and Midwest racetracks.
The training halter worn by Rachel Alexandra prior to her historic victory in the BlackBerry Preakness Stakes (gr. I) was purchased by an Ohio man for $2,859.99 in an online auction that will benefit the V Foundation for Cancer Research.
Rip Van Winkle finally lived up to the hype and broke through for his first group I victory when he powered home for a 2 1/2-length win over Paco Boy in the BGC Sussex Stakes (Eng-I) at Goodwood July 29.
Jess Jackson might as well have said "read my lips," when he stated emphatically on a national teleconference July 28 that Rachel Alexandra will not run in the Breeders' Cup, regardless of how much pressure is put on him.
At the urging of the New York State Racing and Wagering Board, the New York Racing Association July 29 -- opening day of the Saratoga meet--authorized restoration of its televised signal to the in-home distribution network of Nassau Regional Off-Track Betting Corp.
Penn National Gaming Inc. officials see upside to an expansion of gambling in Ohio, but said they have no idea how it will shake out.
Hard Rock International has added a potent new force - an entity run by billionaire Robert L. Johnson - to its team to try to win the exclusive rights to develop the long-stalled casino at Aqueduct racetrack.
David C. Rich, who found The Rich Farm near Stillwater, N.Y., died July 21 at Saratoga Hospital after a bout with cancer.
Fasig-Tipton and the New York Racing Association are teaming to award a $100,000 "Juvenile Jackpot" to the first graduate of the 2009 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga select yearling sale that wins a graded stakes during the 2010 Saratoga meeting in New York. Should no juvenile qualify for the prize in 2010, the award will double to $200,000 for Fasig-Tipton yearlings purchased that year that run at Saratoga in 2011.
A report from the Rutgers Equine Science Center details the economic impact of horse racing and breeding in New Jersey and says revenue from alternative gaming at racetracks has supported and fueled those programs in other states.
The Breeders' Cup has announced that Moxie Equestrian, an equine equipment and apparel company, has been named an "Industry Champion" partner of the Breeders' Cup World Championships, to be held Nov. 6-7 at Santa Anita Park.
Last August, Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey watched with satisfaction as a 2-year-old chestnut daughter of El Prado named Consequence made an inside move to win her debut by three lengths at Saratoga Race Course.
Grade I winner Seattle Smooth, who has won her last five starts (four of them graded stakes), has some physical issues that have prompted her connections to give her a 60-day break from training, Daily Racing Form reported July 28.
Afleet Alex got his first winner as a sire July 28, but just barely. His son Kratisto broke his maiden by a head at Delaware Park.
While America's 3-year-old sweetheart Rachel Alexandra is frolicking at the Jersey Shore Aug. 2 in the Haskell Invitational (gr. I) at Monmouth Park, and a deep, well-matched group of colts gather in the Adirondacks for the Jim Dandy Stakes (gr. II) at Saratoga, the winner of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! brands (gr. I) for the first time in history will be out in the Appalachians, showing off in front of the Mountaineer Park crowd in the West Virginia Derby (gr. II).
Beau Genius, who topped the $2-million mark in progeny earnings eight consecutive years, has been pensioned because of declining fertility at Donald and Karen Cohn's Ballena Vista Farm near Ramona, Calif.
The New York State Racing and Wagering Board clarified July 28 that horses are banned from being entered in races if they have received hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatment within one week of post time. The therapy is permitted otherwise.
Joanne Nor, who operated Norfields Farm near Versailles, Ky., and raced Breeders' Cup winner Desert Stormer, has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in the Eastern District of Kentucky U.S. Bankruptcy Court.
HorseRacing TV has been honored with a Ohio Valley Regional Emmy Award in the "Sports -- One-Time Special" category for the network's "Inside Information: Dubai World Cup" show.
Mine That Bird will make his first racing appearance since the Triple Crown when he faces five other 3-year-olds in the $750,000, West Virginia Derby (gr. II) at Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort.
Monmouth Park in New Jersey is the sixth racetrack to be accredited by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Safety and Integrity Alliance.
David F. Bailey has been appointed assistant race secretary at Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course.
The Horse Racing Radio Network will broadcast live from both Saratoga Race Course and Monmouth Park this weekend.
Total purses of almost $1 million will be offered at Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course for what the track is calling the "Pennsylvania Governor's Cup Racing Festival" July 31-Aug. 1.
They tapped various talking points -- from higher purses and a beefed-up breeding industry to protecting green space and even family values -- but a group of Thoroughbred representatives have brought a singular message to state officials: Get the Aqueduct video lottery terminal casino off the ground.
The Race Track Industry Program at the University of Arizona is teaming up with the New York Racing Association to offer students the opportunity to learn about the business of track management at the inaugural College Day at Saratoga Race Course.
Lone Star Park ended its 2009 spring Thoroughbred meet, which was run from April 9 through July 26, with decreases in both attendance and handle.
This year's West Virginia Breeders Classics program at Charles Town Races & Slots will be worth a record $2 million, organizers said.
BlackBerry Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner Rachel Alexandra had her final workout July 27 at Saratoga as she continues to prepare for her next start in the $1.25 million Haskell Invitational (gr. I) at Monmouth Park on Sunday, Aug. 2.
Fasig-Tipton's Texas division has cataloged 370 horses for its yearling sale. The number is down 26.9% from last year's total of 506, and the auction's length has been reduced from two days to one. The sale is scheduled for Aug. 31 at Lone Star Park, beginning at 10 a.m. (CDT).
Mine That Bird breezed through a four-furlong workout at Mountaineer Casino Racetrack & Resort on July 27. The track's clockers recorded a time of :49 4/5 as the Kentucky Derby winner continued his preparations for Aug. 1, $750,000 West Virginia Derby (gr. II).
The Thoroughbred Legends Racing Stable, one of the biggest spenders at the 2008 yearling auctions, got its first winner July 25 when Tiny Woods defeated Sidney's Candy by a head in a maiden special weight race at Del Mar in California. It was Tiny Woods' career debut.
The future of Ellis Park beyond this year is questionable, but it appears the Kentucky racetrack's current meet has a good chance of being expanded.
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