A bitter dispute between harness horsemen and Chicago-area tracks, threatening the industry's crucial legislative agenda, came to a head Feb. 17 with a victory for horsemen before the Illinois Racing Board.
The Illinois Racing Board approved this year's Chicago-area Thoroughbred stakes schedule Jan. 31 despite strong opposition by horsemen to the continuation of one race.
Without action during a one-day session on Jan. 29, the Illinois Racing Board will be without funding to regulate a full season of live racing and will implement a doomsday schedule.
Illinois horsemen and representatives of the state's racetracks and Advance Deposit Wagering providers have reached agreement on an extension of ADW for three years.
The Illinois Racing Board, over the strong objections of horsemen groups, approved an application from Maywood Park July 25 to act as its own Advance Deposit Wagering licensee.
The legislation authorizes slots at the racetracks and five new casinos.
The Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association believes recent overtures by Arlington Park to the Illinois Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners Foundation may be an end-around on proposed Internet gaming legislation.
Hawthorne Race Course announced Feb. 22 that overnight purses at the track will increase by $12,000 per day, effective, a hike of approximately 15% that takes effect March 1.
Arlington Park and horsemen are working toward resolution of a flap over stall rental at the suburban Chicago race track Feb. 22.
The Illinois Racing Board Nov. 27 approved Hawthorne Race Course's request to drop seven Wednesday cards because of the effects of an outbreak of neurological equine herpes on the backstretch.
The Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association and Hawthorne Race Course have agreed to pay purses to the bottom finisher in all races beginning with the Friday, April 1, racing card.
Arlington Park and Illinois horsemen have agreed to tie individual race purses to field size this year in an effort to ensure more bettable races.
Illinois racing interests say they had enough votes to pass a slots-at-tracks bill this week and some say they were sold out by measure's sponsor in the waning hours of the legislative session.
The Illinois General Assembly abruptly adjourned May 7 without acting on a proposal to allow slot machines at the state's race tracks.
Arlington Park president says the track will go out of business without slots.
Because a supply of equity fund money belonging to Fairmount Park is still being held in escrow, the Collinsville, Ill., track will end its 2009 meeting 18 days earlier than planned.
Frank Kirby has been elected president of the Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association.
A simmering dispute over licensing fees tied to account wagering has flared up in Illinois, where horsemen have pulled the Arlington Park signal from TVG in an attempt to get the signal from the upcoming meet at Hawthorne Race Course available through Youbet.com.
Arlington Park president Cliff Goodrich announced Monday that the track's plans to build two new backstretch family housing facilities, originally scheduled to be completed in two phases over the next 17 months, has been accelerated into a new schedule that calls for both buildings to be ready for the start of the track's 2005 meet in May.
Arlington Park plans to build two new dormitories for backstretch workers at the track, president Cliff Goodrich announced Friday.
The two Thoroughbred racetracks in Chicagoland have inked a two-year contract for a daily replay show that airs on local television.
The Illinois Horse Racing Board Monday authorized a "recapture" payment of $13.7 million from the horsemen's purse fund to the state's racetracks.
The Illinois Horse Racing Board is scheduled to meet Jan. 29 to decide on a $13-million "recapture" payment to the state's racetracks that would come from the horsemen's purse account.
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