A defamation lawsuit brought in Nevada by prominent Thoroughbred owner Mike Pegram against fellow owner Jerry Jamgotchian has been brought to an end with a settlement of $879,536, it was announced June 12.
- By Tom LaMarra
MI Developments reported its racing and gaming business lost $76.68 million in 2010, with a loss of $47.29 million for the fourth quarter of last year, the company reported March 10.
In the latest management change at Gulfstream Park, media relations executive Caton Bredar and marketing executive Mike Cronin are no longer at the Hallandale Beach, Fla., track effective June 10.
The chief executive of the company that now owns Santa Anita Park said installation of a new main track would prevent Oak Tree from using the facility in 2010.
Harrah's Entertainment has ended up with Thistledown after all, but at a greatly reduced price.
- By Tom LaMarra
Churchill Downs Inc. and MI Developments said May 14 they will dissolve TrackNet Media Group, a company formed to address signal pricing and distribution.
Magna International chairman Frank Stronach has agreed to allow shareholders to vote on eliminating his family's special rights and adopt a single class of stock for the auto parts company.
- By Tom LaMarra
A Delaware Bankruptcy Court judge April 26 confirmed a reorganization plan submitted by Magna Entertainment Corp., parent company MI Developments, and a committee of unsecured MEC creditors.
Golden Gate Fields in Northern California is the 15th racetrack to be fully accredited by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Safety and Integrity Alliance.
The California Thoroughbred Trainers reported Feb. 16 that San Luis Rey Downs will close as a Thoroughbred training center effective March 15.
Santa Anita Park officials have indicated the California track's main racing surface will be replaced, but it remains to be seen if the new surface will be synthetic or dirt.
Gulfstream Park's 2010 schedule is again laden with graded stakes, and one safe bet is that most of the 80 racing days will be warm and sunny. Otherwise, there are changes and questions in abundance.
The Anne Arundel County Council Dec. 21 approved a zoning measure that will facilitate slot machines at the Arundel Mills Mall, but also OK'd a measure that allows slots at Laurel Park.
A new entity called Blow Horn Equity has submitted a bid for the Maryland Jockey Club assets, the company announced Dec. 18.
The Maryland Jockey Club said Dec. 17 it has appealed to the Maryland State Board of Contract Appeals over its disqualification from the bidding process for a license to operate slot machines at Laurel Park.
Though a state commission ruled its application for a gaming license incomplete, Laurel Park will continue its push for slot machines Dec. 17 by discussing its "advanced status" to construct a slots facility.
Caton Bredar has been named executive producer of the new media development department at Gulfstream Park, track officials announced Dec. 16.
The Chickasaw Nation won preliminary approval Nov. 19 for a 2010 racing and gaming license at Remington Park, which expects to purchase the Oklahoma racetrack from Magna Entertainment Corp. for $80 million.
Ken Dunn, formerly of Calder Casino & Race Course, has joined the Gulfstream Park management team, the South Florida racetrack announced Nov. 2.
A Delaware bankruptcy judge approved the sale of Magna Entertainment Corp.-owned Thistledown in Ohio to Harrah's Entertainment for $89.5 million and Remington Park in Oklahoma City for $80.25 million to a Chickasaw Nation subsidiary. An agreement also has been reached to sell Lone Star Park for $27 million.
- By Tom LaMarra
The Chickasaw Nation appears well on its way to purchasing Remington Park in Oklahoma from Magna Entertainment Corp., but the fate of other MEC racetrack holdings is fuzzy at best.
- By Jack Shinar
An auction scheduled Sept. 8 on properties owned by bankrupt Magna Entertainment Corp. will not go forward after the company withdrew Santa Anita Park, Lone Star Park, and other assets from the bidding in court documents filed in U.S. bankruptcy court.
- By Tom LaMarra
MI Developments, parent company of Magna Entertainment Corp., said Aug. 12 debtors filed a motion seeking court approval to sell MEC-owned Remington Park Racing & Casino in Oklahoma to a third party for $80.25 million pending "higher and better offers."
The Thoroughbred Owners of California is among the interested bidders in Santa Anita Park, an organization official confirmed.
Led by strong performances from Twinspires.com and Youbet.com, collective handle for the four largest domestic advance deposit wagering platforms increased by roughly 15% in the first quarter of the year, while their overall share of the national betting pie grew by more than 2%.
Breeders' Cup said April 29 this year's two-day World Championships will remain at Santa Anita Park.
MI Developments said April 20 it has agreed with MEC to terminate its "stalking horse" bid of $195 million to purchase various assets, including racetracks. MEC filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in early April, at which time MID announced it would buy some of its assets.
Calder Race Course March 31 submitted its final filing for 2009-10 racing dates to the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering, and it confirms earlier reports that Calder will not run head-to-head with nearby Gulfstream Park during that period.
Thistledown, at the suggestion of the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, has suspended the $300,000 Ohio Derby (gr. II) for 3-year-olds. The race was to have its 75th running in 2009.
Mounting a defense for the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) at Pimlico Race Course, the state of Maryland and the city of Baltimore went to court March 27 to keep the second leg of the Triple Crown in the state because of uncertainties raised by the bankruptcy of Pimlico owner Magna Entertainment Corp.
Thistledown owner Magna Entertainment Corp. has met the deadline for payment of a $1-million bond to the Ohio State Racing Commission, which means the Cleveland-area racetrack will not have its operating permit suspended.
Gulfstream Park said March 27 it will run its next meet from Jan. 3, 2010 to April 24, 2010, ending speculation it could seek dates in November and December of 2009.
One day after reporting Magna Entertainment Corp. would not release an annual report due to its ongoing bankruptcy proceedings, controlling shareholder MI Developments released data showing MEC posted its highest-ever annual loss in its brief history, though it's not exactly clear what the final tally is.
The California Horse Racing Board got a bit of good news March 19 when the president of Hollywood Park assured commissioners that it would run its 2009 fall/winter meet as planned. The board also received an update on bankruptcy developments from Magna Entertainment Corp.
The Ohio State Racing Commission ruled March 19 that Thistledown's racing permit will be suspended as of March 28 if parent company Magna Entertainment Corp., which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection March 5, fails to renew a $1-million bond.
The Maryland Jockey Club March 17 officially unveiled a 2009 spring stakes schedule at Pimlico Race Course that's down about $1 million from last year and doesn't include the grade I Pimlico Special.
Frank Stronach is chairman of Magna Entertainment Corp., a major racetrack operator that filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection March 5. He also is the owner of Adena Springs, which won its fifth consecutive Eclipse Award as outstanding breeder in 2008 while Stronach picked up his fourth Eclipse as outstanding owner. Stronach discussed the MEC bankruptcy with The Blood-Horse following the Adena Springs sale of 2-year-olds in training.
The Adena Springs sale of 2-year-olds in training bucked the downward trend in the Thoroughbred marketplace in one important statistical category. The median price rose 28.6% from a year ago during the eighth edition of the auction, which was held March 16 at Adena Springs South near Williston, Fla.
Magna Entertainment Corp. announced March 5 it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, and also unveiled a plan to sell many of its assets, including Gulfstream Park in Florida, Golden Gate Fields in California, and Lone Star Park in Texas.
Magna Entertainment Corp. and partner Forest City Enterprises announced Feb. 26 the first 32 tenants for the retail portion of their The Village at Gulfstream Park development. Plans for the $1.2-billion complex, adjacent to Gulfstream's clubhouse/casino building, include a hotel and condominiums on the property in Hallandale Beach, Fla. Meanwhile, officials are reluctant to speculate on a possible bankruptcy filing by MEC.
Magna Entertainment Corp. said Feb. 4 it has arranged to pay a $28.5-million licensing fee for slot machines -- but the money will be placed in an escrow account at a Maryland bank.
Magna Entertainment Corp. chairman Frank Stronach is advocating a charter for "horsemen's rights" and said his company, the largest in North America in terms of racetrack holdings, would work with horsemen to accomplish it.
In a jaw-dropping revision, Maryland received requests for far fewer slot machines in five license proposals than previously thought, and two of the six bidders -- including Laurel Park owner Magna Entertainment Corp. -- failed to pay $22.5 million in required up-front fees, a state official said Feb. 3.
Churchill Downs Inc. is reviewing its membership in the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, racing industry officials said Dec. 9.
Magna Entertainment Corp. announced Nov. 26 an agreement with MI Developments, the company's controlling shareholder, which will allow it to "recapitalize and reposition MEC to enable it to pursue its strategy of horse racing, gaming, and entertainment on a standalone basis."
Magna Entertainment Corp. has formally adopted a company-wide policy promoting the humane treatment of racehorses, the company announced Oct. 10.
Magna Entertainment Corp., in a statement issued the evening of Aug. 28, acknowledged it is having discussions with the Thoroughbred Horsemen's Group on what company chairman Frank Stronach called "a new framework" for pari-mutuel economics.
Following a transition period, MI Developments chief executive officer and board member John Simonetti said he will leave his post, but he offered no timeline Aug. 8 during a conference call on the company's second-quarter earnings.
Major stakes will be scrapped and the Pimlico Race Course barn area closed until next year's spring meet under changes announced Aug. 6.
Magna Entertainment Corp., which posted a $21.25-million loss for the second quarter of 2008, said Aug. 5 it's reconsidering the sale of some assets it expected to unload as part of a debt-elimination plan.
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