When Del Mar and Keeneland host their first Breeders' Cup World Championships, the two tracks will both be relying on relatively new dirt surfaces as their main tracks.
A three-year plan of upcoming Breeders' Cup sites does not include eight-time host Churchill Downs or the New York Racing Association, a five-time host; but Cup officials said the schedule should not be seen as a snub.
The opportunity to race at the track closest to the Kentucky Thoroughbred breeding industry that has helped make the Breeders' Cup possible proved a major factor in awarding the 2015 Breeders' Cup to Keeneland.
In a move that would keep the timing of its "Fall Stars" weekend in place, Keeneland hopes to start its 2015 fall meet one weekend earlier than usual.
With industry sources indicating a 2015 Breeders' Cup at Keeneland has a better-than-good chance of becoming reality, the president of the racetrack and auction company said April 30 it is in the due diligence phase.
The Keeneland spring meet closed April 25 with a record 15-day meet attendance and gains in on-track wagering.
Gary Player, a legend in the golfing world and a longtime Thoroughbred owner, breeder, and advocate of Thoroughbred aftercare, will deliver the keynote address when OwnerView, the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association.
The Hancock family's Claiborne Farm has become the signature sponsor of Keeneland's Breeders' Futurity (gr. I), to be held Saturday, Oct. 4. The purse will increase from $400,000 to $500,000.
For the sixth consecutive year, Keeneland topped the 2014 racetrack ratings produced by the Horseplayers Association of North America.
Keeneland will remove its synthetic Polytrack surface at the end of the spring meet and return its main track to dirt before its fall meeting this October, the Lexington oval announced April 2.
Keeneland and OperaLex, formerly the Lexington Opera Society, announced that the Keeneland sales pavilion will be the site of this year's Encore!, the organization's annual fund-raising event.
Keeneland is throwing its hat into the ring as a potential host site for the Breeders' Cup World Championships, track president and chief executive officer Bill Thomason confirmed March 27.
The Jockey Club and Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation will conduct the fifth "Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit" July 8-9 at the Keeneland sales pavilion in Lexington.
OwnerView, a website and information resource developed by The Jockey Club and TOBA to assist both current and prospective owners, will host a national two-day ownership conference in October 2014 at Keeneland.
Keeneland president Bill Thomason has been elected to the American Horse Council board of trustees, succeeding Nick Nicholson.
The Jockey Club will fund baseline concussion testing for all jockeys who use the Jockey Health Information System, it was announced Nov. 6.
Keeneland concluded its 2013 fall race meeting Oct. 26 with record attendance and all-sources wagering for its 17-day season.
Keeneland Association and the Logan Development Group announced a partnership to provide students participating in Keeneland's College Ambassadors Program with access to the Elite Collegiate Career Placement Program.
- By Tom LaMarra
A damp first weekend didn't seem to greatly impact the proceedings at Keeneland. watch photo
Upgrading the on-site customer experience, be it for live horse racing or full-card simulcasts, is critical to the growth of the business, panelists said Oct. 7 on the first day of the International Simulcast Conference.
Keeneland and Blue Grass Farms Charities have announced a new initiative, the Backstretch CORE Program (Comprehensive Outreach and Enrichment), to provide expanded services to the Lexington track's backstretch employees.
The Jockey Club announced Aug. 20 the election of Barbara Banke, Bobby Flay, Andrew Rosen, and Bill Thomason to the Club's membership.
Keeneland president and CEO Bill Thomason announced June 17 that Amy Gregory, a 30-year veteran of the Thoroughbred industry, has been named the company's director of communications.
Keeneland concluded its 2013 spring race meeting April 26 with a number of records, including all-sources handle and most wins by an owner, trainer, and jockey.
For the fifth consecutive year, Keeneland, which begins its spring meet April 5, topped the 2013 racetrack ratings produced by the Horseplayers Association of North America.
- By Tom LaMarra
Tom LaMarra talks with Keeneland president Bill Thomason on the spring meet. Bill talks about how Keeneland is working to create lifetime fans and ways to engage the younger patrons. watch video
Keeneland Race Course expects traffic issues at its upcoming spring meeting due to extensive construction along Versailles Road (U.S. 60), but the Lexington oval is doing the best it can to address the problem, officials say.
Keeneland is unveiling a host of enhancements for the upcoming spring meeting to help make betting easier and more enjoyable for fans including "betologists" who will answer questions about wagering.
Keeneland and Cross Gate Gallery of Lexington have formed a new company that will hold its first sporting art auction in November of this year.
Keeneland officials said they view their plan to build a Quarter Horse racetrack and entertainment center in southeastern Kentucky as part of an overall effort to improve the economics of the horse industry.
Keeneland is negotiating the purchase of the Thunder Ridge harness track in Prestonburg, Ky., in partnership with a Nevada-based casino company.
Keeneland said Feb. 7 it has no intention to remove its Polytrack surface after this year's spring meet. The track responded to a request for comment based on rumors that have recently circulated.
Keeneland concluded its 2012 fall race meeting Oct. 27 with strong gains in all-sources handle and an attendance record.
Keeneland Association announced it has extended its sponsorship of the Keeneland Phoenix Stakes (Ire-I) at The Curragh Racecourse in Ireland for an additional three years.
Keeneland has dropped out of the Kentucky Equine Education Project but intends to continue working with the organization and others to further Thoroughbred racing and breeding in the state.
The fourth edition of the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit will feature a "Prevention vs. Reaction" theme when it is held at Keeneland Oct. 16-17.
- By Tom LaMarra
Bill Thomason, who took over as president and chief executive officer at Keeneland Sept. 1, has been named to the National Thoroughbred Racing Association board of directors.
A fourth Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit will be held Oct. 16-17 at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, K.Y., the Jockey Club and Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation announced July 24.
Racing journalist Ed Prosser is Keeneland's new European representative, it was announced June 29. He succeeds Tim Preston, who is retiring from the position after 23 years.
Nick Nicholson will retire Sept. 1 as president and chief executive officer of Keeneland, and will be replaced by Bill Thomason, the association's vice president and chief financial officer.
Today, June 18 Keeneland President and CEO Nick Nicholson today announced that Bill Thomason, a long-time financial administrator and leader in the equine industry, will be the company's new Chief Financial Officer.
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