Before any action is taken on a Virginia Racing Commission plan that could have paved the way for racing at Colonial Downs in 2015, it will be challenged in court by the New Kent, Va., track.
While no agreement is in place and the two sides still disagree on some important details, Colonial Downs and the Virginia Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association have moved closer to an agreement.
In a letter sent to its members this month, the Virginia Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association seeks to strengthen support for its organization, which is in a stalemate with Colonial Downs on race dates.
While acknowledging its decision could jeopardize Thoroughbred racing in the state for this year or even several years, Colonial Downs says it has ceased negotiations with the Virginia HBPA.
A two-hour meeting March 12 between the Virginia Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, representatives of Colonial Downs, and an arbitrator failed to yield an agreement over 2014 racing dates in Virginia.
The 2014 racing schedule for Colonial Downs remains in limbo due to a contract stalemate over dates between track management and the Virginia Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association.
With Colonial Downs and the Virginia HBPA failing to reach a contract agreement on this year's race schedule, the track has decided to temporarily close several off-track betting locations.
Steeplechase runners will compete at Colonial Downs as Central Virginia's new spring racing event will kick off in April 2013.
Relocation of its lighting system will allow Colonial Downs to offer nighttime turf races as part of its new schedule in 2012.
Colonial Downs may be looking for a manager to operate its live Thoroughbred and harness meet after releasing general manager Iain Woolnough Nov. 10. It also closed one of its nine off-track betting parlors in Virginia.
After 30 days of live racing, handle and attendance for Colonial Downs' Thoroughbred meet is mixed. Average daily handle on live racing at Colonial Downs is $1,224,667, up 16% over the same period last year.
At the conclusion of Colonial Downs' second full week of racing, overall handle at the central Virginia racetrack is up 18.36% over the same period last year.
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