As New England Thoroughbred horsemen and stakeholders continue to stare at a precarious fate in the industry, The Stronach Group is looking at possible expansion into the region.
The sale of Suffolk Downs to a major Boston real estate development company was green-lighted by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission at a public hearing March 30, but the deal will not adversely affect the six-day live meet planned for this summer.
The owners of Suffolk Downs have sent a document to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission asking for formal approval of the sale of the property to a major Boston-based real estate development company.
While there are no guarantees, the door has been left open for Suffolk Downs to continue to offer a limited number of live racing days beyond the 2017 season.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission settled a long and acrimonious dispute over simulcasting revenues between the management teams of Suffolk Downs and Raynham Greyhound Park Oct. 13 by ruling in favor of the Thoroughbred track.
While the Suffolk Downs ownership group moves forward with plans to redevelop the property as real estate, it intends to again host an abbreviated Thoroughbred meet next summer.
New England track was seeking funds to run a 15-day meet in 2016.
Horsemen in New England will have to wait longer to see if live racing can return to the Brockton Fairgrounds this year.
The potential return of live racing to the Brockton Fairgrounds was delayed once again July 21, when the Massachusetts Gaming Commission tabled the track's request for funds to cover the administrative and operational expenses of running a live meet.
A statewide referendum to allow a slots parlor adjacent to Suffolk Downs will move forward after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled June 28 the question can be on the November ballot.
The possible return of live racing to the Brockton Fairgrounds has been pushed back on the calendar after the owners requested their petition for funding from the Race Horse Development Fund be pulled from the agenda for a public hearing June 23.
Thoroughbred horsemen in Massachusetts will get a significantly smaller allocation of the state's multimillion dollar Race Horse Development Fund for purses and breeders' awards.
The New England HBPA alleges a rival horsemen's group violated the Interstate Horseracing Act when it signed a purse contract with the Brockton Fairgrounds without its consent as the authorized horsemen’s group in Massachusetts.
Suffolk Downs received approval from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission June 9 to use $2.4 million from the Race Horse Development Fund for purses over six days of Thoroughbred racing this year.
Thoroughbred racing will return to Suffolk Downs for three two-day racing festivals, officials at the Massachusetts track said May 5. The mini-meets will be held in July, August, and September.
A subcommittee of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission March 29 opted to delay a vote and instead solicit input on the percentage of revenue Thoroughbred and Standardbred purses and breeding funds get from casino gaming.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission took no action Dec. 17 on a request from the Massachusetts THA to be recognized as the legitimate representative of the region's owners and trainers rather than the New England HBPA.
A ballot question that would allow a slot machine parlor near Suffolk Downs has cleared a hurdle and could appear on the statewide Massachusetts ballot in November.
Live Thoroughbred racing can return to Brockton Fairgrounds for the first time since 2001 and Suffolk Downs will double the days of its live meet in 2016.
The horsemen of New England agree that live racing and breeding is in serious peril in the region, but the rival factions of owners, trainers, and breeders remain deeply divided on the optimum way to revitalize the industry.
The ownership groups of Suffolk Downs and the Brockton Fairgrounds, which has not hosted Thoroughbred racing since 2001, have filed applications with the Massachusetts Gaming Commission for live racing dates in 2016.
Bettors on track and at simulcast outlets across the country will have an incentive at Suffolk Downs Oct. 3: The pari-mutuel takeout to a rate has been lowered to 15% across the board.
Suffolk Downs management and the New England Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association are keeping the lamp lit for the Massachusetts Thoroughbred racing and breeding industry.
One year after the ownership group of Suffolk Downs announced it would no longer host live racing and subsequently shuttered the barn area, the track will reopen its doors Sept. 5 for the first of three racing programs.
Live racing will return to Suffolk Downs this fall now that the Massachusetts Gaming Commission has given formal approval to the application by the racetrack for a three-day meet in 2015.
On the eve of a hearing to approve or deny the application of Suffolk Downs to hold three days of live racing this fall, track management shot down the persistent rumor that The Stronach Group plans to lease the track.
The sizable faction of horsemen dissatisfied with leadership of the New England affiliate of the Horsemen's Benevolent & Protective Association has splintered to form the new Massachusetts Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association.
Though Suffolk Downs had published a condition sheet for races Aug. 8, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission July 23 delayed action on the track's application for three live racing dates this year.
A day after the Massachusetts Gaming Commission took no action June 11 on the supplemental application by Suffolk Downs for three days of live racing in 2015, local horsemen remained deeply divided on the plan.
Group expresses strong opposition to the supplemental application of Suffolk Downs to conduct three days of live racing in 2015 at Massachusetts Gaming Commission hearing.
The management of Suffolk Downs, which announced last September that live racing had come to an end, intends to bring back the Thoroughbreds for three racing programs beginning in July this year.
New England horsemen have asked Suffolk Downs to request three days of live racing this summer, and with $1.5 million available for purses, pots would average $500,000 per program.
Suffolk Downs, which announced in September it would no longer offer live racing and would not apply for a 2015 racing license, is expected to reverse course and apply for dates within two to three weeks.
The New England Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association posted a statement on its website Mar. 24 discounting the likelihood of a 50-day meet operated by horsemen at Suffolk Downs in 2015.
Negotiations that could lead to reopening of Suffolk Downs are continuing after track owners proposed the possibility of using money generated from the state's casino industry to help underwrite the cost of a meet.
Negotiations on a lease agreement between the management of Suffolk Downs and officials of the New England Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association remain on track, contrary to a published report.
The New England affiliate of the Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association took one more important step toward the restoration of live racing at Suffolk Downs in 2015 by filing a supplemental application Nov. 24.
Suffolk Downs, which ended live racing for good earlier in the fall and laid off the majority of the track's remaining employees on Nov. 20 is now investigating ways to remain open as a simulcast-only facility in 2015.
While maintaining it is doing whatever is necessary to keep the door open for the return of Thoroughbred racing, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission voted unanimously to approve three "placeholder" 2015 dates applications.
Lou Raffetto, former Suffolk Downs vice president of racing, is teaming with the New England Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association in its efforts to structure a deal that would restore live racing at the track.
Unionized employees of Suffolk Downs have sued the Massachusetts Gaming Commission contending it violated the law when it selected Wynn Resorts for a casino license instead of the track's gaming partner, Mohegan Sun.
A request by Suffolk Downs that the Massachusetts Gaming Commission reconsider its decision to award its Boston area casino license to Wynn Resorts didn't get out of the starting gate at a public hearing Oct. 9.
Carl Gambardella, the all-time leading rider in New England, hadn't been back to Suffolk Downs in four years but wanted to be on hand for the last day of the meet, as it is slated to be the 79-year-old track's last.
The New England Horseman's Benevolent and Protective Association submitted an application Oct. 1 to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission to conduct a live meet at Suffolk Downs next year.
As live racing at Suffolk Downs winds down for the season, and likely forever, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission is seeking options for the continuation of Thoroughbred racing in the state.
As live racing draws to a close at Suffolk Downs, track officials are extending the meet by one day so that the 79-year-old track where Hall of Famers Seabiscuit, Whirlaway, John Henry, Skip Away and Cigar once raced.
The owners of the Brockton Fairgrounds have stepped up to offer the Thoroughbred horsemen of Massachusetts a home after Suffolk Downs came up short in its casino quest and will soon be closed.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission said Sept. 18 it will offer help for soon to be unemployed Suffolk Downs workers and racing industry stakeholders, but the words rang hollow for the track's chief operating officer.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission said no dice to the state's Thoroughbred racing and breeding industry when it cast a preliminary 3-1 vote Sept. 16 in favor of awarding the sole Boston area casino license to Wynn Resorts.
The Massachusetts Thoroughbred racing and breeding industry was dealt a devastating blow when the Massachusetts Gaming Commission decided to award the sole Boston-area casino license to Wynn Resorts.
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