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.
The Thoroughbred industry in Massachusetts will receive the lion's share of future expanded gaming revenue to be collected and allocated by the Race Horse Development Fund.
Horsemen and Suffolk Downs employees took advantage of their final opportunity to speak in support of a casino at the track during a Massachusetts Gaming Commission hearing Aug. 11.
The Horse Racing Committee of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission decided Aug. 5 to stick with the allocation percentage it voted on at its previous meeting.
The future of live Thoroughbred racing in New England became cloudier June 24 after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that a referendum to repeal the state's casino law may appear on the November ballot.
The 2014 meet at Suffolk Downs will be extended through Sept. 29 but the number of live racing days will decrease, according to a new agreement reached between track management and the New England HBPA.
Massachusetts is the first U.S. racing authority to endorse horse safety and welfare guidelines from the International Group of Specialists Racing Veterinarians.
As Suffolk Downs prepares to open its 2014 meet May 3, a heavy cloud of uncertainty about the future of live racing hangs over the sole surviving Thoroughbred racetrack in New England.
New England horsemen voice their support for the proposed $1.3 billion Mohegan Sun casino development at Suffolk Downs at a public hearing March 25.
The New Hampshire House of Representatives, which has killed every piece of casino legislation in modern times, again rejected expanded gambling March 13 by a vote of 173-144.
The struggling Massachusetts harness racing industry received a huge boost Feb. 27 when the Massachusetts Gaming Commission selected Penn National Gaming proposal to build a slots parlor at Plainridge Race Course.
Voters in Revere, Mass., overwhelmingly backed Suffolk Downs and gaming partner Mohegan Sun in their plan to develop a world-class destination resort casino on the grounds of the 79-year-old track.
The head of Mohegan Sun said Jan. 22 live Thoroughbred racing will be preserved at Suffolk Downs should the gaming giant prove successful in winning the sole destination resort casino designated for the Boston area.
Suffolk Downs said Jan. 9 it is committed to live racing should its new partner, Mohegan Sun, win the license to build a casino on track property.
The Revere, Mass., city council has set Feb. 25, 2014, as the date for a referendum election on the city's host community agreement with Mohegan Sun for a proposed $1 billion casino at Suffolk Downs racetrack.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission decided on Dec. 3 to defer until next week a ruling on whether Suffolk Downs and new partner Mohegan Sun can legally relocate a casino resort project to the city of Revere.
Suffolk Downs remained in the running for a casino license with the Nov. 27 announcement it has reached an agreement with Mohegan Sun, which operates gaming facilities in Connecticut, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.
Suffolk Downs was granted a racing license Nov. 14 for 2014 based on its intent to offer live Thoroughbred racing.
Suffolk Downs received a recommendation that its request for 100 days of racing be approved for 2014, but a track official said there are "variables" that could complicate matters.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission Oct. 29 ruled Suffolk Downs suitable to pursue a license for a destination resort casino.
Suffolk Downs Oct. 24 released details of a $40 million "racing improvement plan" tied to its bid for a destination casino license. Officials held a press conference at Indian Rock Stables, a Thoroughbred breeding farm.
Just days after asking its casino partner to resign in the wake of an investigation by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, Suffolk Downs said it will unveil a $40 million "racing improvement plan" at a local horse farm.
Just three weeks before critical local referendums on casino gambling at Suffolk Downs, the racetrack asked partner Caesars Entertainment to resign from the proposed destination resort casino development.
Horse racing will receive a share of gaming revenue from the casinos that will be built in Massachusetts, but during an Oct. 16 forum on the industry, stakeholders asked a question: What good is the money without racetracks?
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission took steps Jan. 30 to ensure the highest standards in both integrity and safety as the state's horse racing industry prepares to coexist with planned casinos in the near future.
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