With record purses attracting full fields and low takeout sparking interest from horseplayers, Kentucky Downs closed its five-date boutique meet Sept. 15 with total wagering up nearly 34 percent.
One byproduct of the Churchill Downs Racing Club is the fact that Ellis racetrack owner Ron Geary and Kentucky Downs' co-owner Corey Johnsen can race their horses at their tracks.
Enhancing what already is American racing's most lucrative daily purse program, Kentucky Downs will pump an additional $600,000-plus into its 2016 overnight races and stakes for its five-date, all-turf meet in September.
Keeneland will begin its spring meet with a bump in overnight purses, but track officials hope it's the start of steady growth made possible by revenue from Lexington's historical race wagering facility.
The Kentucky Equine Education Project and Turfway Park March 14 said the Northern Kentucky track would rejoin the horse industry advocacy group and have a seat on the KEEP board of directors.
The Kentucky Equine Education Project is mobilizing support for House Bill 112, which will provide the same exemption from state sales tax on feed, supplies, and equipment that other agriculture animals receive.
Kentucky Downs and Churchill Downs will have no overlapping dates next year under a schedule approved Oct. 26 by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. Kentucky Downs had requested seven days, up from five this year.
Kentucky Downs near Franklin, Ky., has been re-accredited by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association's Safety and Integrity Alliance.
Regulators, as well as potentially affected track officials, had no easy answer Oct. 6 for Kentucky Downs' request to add two days to its short, successful September meet.
Kentucky Downs has named Ted Nicholson as vice president of the Franklin, Ky., track. Nicholson had been consulting with Kentucky Downs on its 2015 racing season prior to being named to this permanent position.
Kentucky Downs, which was rebuffed last year in its attempt to add racing days to its 2015 schedule, will try again for 2016, track president Corey Johnsen said Sept. 16.
Kentucky Downs has postponed its Sept. 12 race card because of a rain-softened turf course and will move each race to Sept. 14, according to track president Corey Johnsen.
Kentucky Downs cancelled its final eight races Sept. 10 after jockeys decided not to ride on a rain-softened turf course they felt was unsafe.
As Corey Johnsen bustled about Kentucky Downs on a steamy hot Sept. 4 afternoon, the president of the track near Franklin, Ky., mused about his expectations for the boutique meet set to begin the following day.
Fasig-Tipton Co. has signed on to be title sponsor of two $300,000 distaff turf stakes to run Sept. 19 at Kentucky Downs as part of "Fasig-Tipton Ladies Day."
Brad Kelley's Calumet Farm has signed on to be title sponsor of Kentucky Downs' premier stakes event for 2-year-olds.
The board of directors of the Kentucky Equine Education Project (KEEP) has unanimously approved a resolution calling for equine tax equity for Kentucky's horse industry.
Kentucky Downs recorded $8,425,830 in pari-mutuel handle on its historical race wagering machines from June 29 to July 5 to set an all-time weekly record, the western Kentucky track said July 7.
A record total of $7.5 million in purses will be offered during the 2015 Kentucky Downs meet, which runs for five days beginning Sept. 5 and offers a schedule of 12 stakes.
Attorneys for Kentucky Downs, some of its principals, and Encore Gaming have filed a motion seeking dismissal of a lawsuit filed by the AmTote totalizator company, stating that the claims are unfounded and undocumented.
Kentucky Downs will ask regulators May 6 to let it offer about $4.2 million in Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund supplements during its 2015 meet, as well as spend $50,000 to advertise the incentive program.
Joe Clabes has been appointed executive director of the Kentucky Equine Education Project, the organization's board of directors said April 27.
Kentucky Downs, which holds a short all-turf meet in September, has topped the 2015 Horseplayers Association of North America Racetrack Rankings.
The AmTote totalizator company has filed a federal lawsuit that claims Kentucky Downs, its principals, and a company that is now providing tote services to the track misappropriated trade secrets and breached a contract.
Lobbyist Joe Clabes has been hired to assist the Kentucky Equine Education Project in the 2015 legislative session in Kentucky, the organization's board of directors announced Feb. 9.
A pair of racetrack executives outlined plans to promote jockeys, and promote horse racing through the use of riders, at this year's Jockeys' Guild Assembly Jan. 19-20 in Hollywood, Fla.
Old Friends retirement farm near Georgetown, Ky. has announced a partnership with Kentucky Downs to establish a satellite facility at the Kentucky racetrack.
The Kentucky Equine Education Project's board is no longer supporting casino legislation in the Bluegrass state, but will support Instant Racing, a gaming form that has proven successful at two Kentucky tracks.
Under a plan approved Oct. 15 by the tracks involved, Kentucky Downs will continue to offer just five race days in 2015 but the Franklin, Ky., track will pick up an additional Saturday.
Representatives from Kentucky Downs, Churchill Downs, and Ellis Park failed to hammer out an agreement on 2015 September race dates in a Tuesday, Oct. 14, meeting facilitated by a KHRC committee.
A conflict over 2015 dates' requests for Churchill Downs and Kentucky Downs arose Sept. 30 when the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission's dates committee held the first of several meetings to consider the state's calendar.
Kentucky Downs closed out its highly successful 2014 live racing season Wednesday, Sept. 24, and the track established new records for wagering handle and starters per race during the five race-date season.
Kentucky Downs has designated its Sept. 24 card as Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation Day in support of a leading source of veterinary research for horses.
Six of Thoroughbred racing's all-time greatest jockeys will be at Kentucky Downs Sept. 10 to raise funds for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys' Fund.
The Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund Advisory Committee Sept. 5 approved formation of a subcommittee to explore possible purse bonuses or races for horses sired by Kentucky-based stallions.
Kentucky Downs has installed 16 surveillance cameras in the stable area for its 2014 racing season, which begins Saturday, Sept. 6.
One of the most prominent races of the upcoming Kentucky Downs meeting has been renamed the More Than Ready Mile after the internationally successful stallion standing at WinStar Farm.
Hall of Fame jockeys Pat Day, Laffit Pincay, Jr., Eddie Maple, Chris McCarron, and Randy Romero, as well as active riders Edgar Prado and Calvin Borel will be at Kentucky Downs for "Hall of Fame Day" Sept. 10.
The 2014 Kentucky Downs September meet will feature record purses in excess of $1 million per card for each of its five days. The Franklin, Ky., track will open Saturday, Sept. 6.
Stephen Panus, vice president of communications for the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, acknowledged many newspapers have discontinued racing coverage. He encouraged riders to embrace social media.
Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse jockeys will be learning the latest information about health and safety issues, especially related to concussions, during the 2014 Jockeys' Guild Assembly Jan. 26-28 in Hollywood, Fla.
Louisville attorney Bob Heleringer, who served in the Kentucky House of Representatives from 1980-2002, has been named executive director of the Kentucky Equine Education Project.
Racing executives indicated Oct. 9 there is little chance of the Thoroughbred racing industry developing a comprehensive analysis of lower pari-mutuel takeout rates.
A panel of the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has deferred action on 2014 racing dates for Churchill Downs and Kentucky Downs to give those two tracks an opportunity to work out overlapping requests for three dates.
Fueled by large fields attracted to the track's hefty purses, the five-day all-turf meet at Kentucky Downs ended Sept. 25 with record pari-mutuel handle for the day and the meet.
Kentucky Downs opened its 21st season of live racing Sept. 7 by shattering the single-day wagering record as $2,837,897 was wagered on Saturday's 10-race card.
When Kentucky Downs holds its 21st meet in September, the Franklin, Ky. oval will have some of the lowest exotic takeout rates among U.S. tracks.
The Board of Directors of the Kentucky Equine Education Project has added five new members.
The Saddle Brook Jockey Club will be operated by Corey Johnsen's Magellan Gaming company. It will offer simulcast wagering and dining in a sports bar experience.
After last-minute horse-trading and some tough compromises, Kentucky's five Thoroughbred tracks have reached agreement on a 2013 calendar that drastically alters the traditional schedule.
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