Hawthorne Race Course

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Great State Challenge Could Return ... But Where?

The Great State Challenge will return to the calendar in 2003 if agreements are reached between a host site and horsemen's groups, and if "financial and other adjustments" are made, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association said Feb. 13 after a board of directors meeting in Florida.

Illinois Budget Woes Bring About Purse Cuts

Illinois racing took a multimillion-dollar hit as Gov. George Ryan sliced up this year's overall state appropriations bill to deal with a budget crisis. Among the items cut by Ryan was money for the "recapture" of purse money.

On the Other Hand

Bob Kieckhefer -- Illinois racing. It's hard to figure out where to start thinking about the current state of affairs. Harder yet to figure out where things are going.

Hawthorne Spring Meet Ends With Strong Numbers

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The numbers have been released and they speak for themselves in the success of Hawthorne Spring racing meet. Through the introduction of the $100,000 Guaranteed Pick 6 and more importantly, the lowered take-out on all wagers, Hawthorne showed a gain in handle and excelled on all three Triple Crown days.

Hawthorne Race Report: A Good Day For Duckhorn

The axiom "speed kills" holds true about every second race for Duckhorn. The other times he worries trainer Patrick Byrne half to death. Fortunately for Byrne and owner Michael Tabor, the "good" Duckhorn showed up for the $500,000 Hawthorne Gold Cup (gr. II) May 19. Of course, that was bad news for his half-dozen opponents, who spent a mile and a quarter watching the rear end of the roan 4-year-old colt.

Hawthorne: Reduced Takeout Rates and Turf Racing

Hawthorne Race Course, which carried the Thoroughbred sport in the Chicago-area during a two-year dark period at Arlington Park in the late 1990s, will open May 1 for the first of two meets and feature reduced takeout rates on wagers. The meet will mark the return of grass to the Chicago racing calendar.

Sportsman's Rewarded With Double-Digit Business Gains

In 2000, Sportsman's Park suffered from its conversion to a dual-use facility for horse and motor sports racing. With sight lines and other fan amenities compromised, attendance and handle sagged. To address the problems, Sportsman's Park spent several million dollars during the past year to improve its facility, then implemented an extensive fan outreach program to show off the changes.

Hawthorne's Top Events to Highlight Spring Meet

The Hawthorne Gold Cup (gr. II), displaced from its fall date by a scheduling change, will be run this year on Preakness Day, May 19, for a purse of $500,000. The Hawthorne Derby (gr. IIIT) will be run on the Hawthorne turf on May 12. The changes are part of an overall stakes schedule of 15 events during Hawthorne's split meet. Six will be run during the spring, the remainder during the fall/winter season.

Five Tracks Cancel Friday Racing

Weather conditions forced five tracks -- Turfway Park, Hawthorne Race Course, Mountaineer Park, Charles Town, and Penn National Race Course -- to cancel racing again on Friday. Friday's cancellation marks the seventh time in just over a week Turfway has canceled racing due to weather and Hawthorne's fifth such cancellation. Charles Town, Mountaineer and Penn National each have lost all or part of three cards recently.

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