Speculation abounds in Ohio, where casino companies are examining racetracks for possible purchase and a deal on revenue from video lottery terminals for purses hasn't been hammered out.
After Michigan horsemen experienced a scare of losing half of their summer/fall meet at Pinnacle Race Course, negotiations were held among the Michigan Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, the Michigan Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association, and the Office of the Racing Commissioner to shave less than 10 days from the schedule.
The governor of West Virginia, on hand for the Aug. 1 West Virginia Derby (gr. II) at Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort, said gaming at tracks was built around racing, and the sport won't be allowed to suffer in exchange for company profits.
Penn National Gaming Inc. officials see upside to an expansion of gambling in Ohio, but said they have no idea how it will shake out.
Habayeb, by Storm Cat, was represented by his first winner and first stakes winner in the same race.
The Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association issued a statement July 16 confirming it will have to negotiate with racetracks for purse revenue from video lottery terminals.
One broodmare died in a July 15 fire that destroyed the primary barn at Double D Farm in northeastern Ohio, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported.
It appears Ohio racetracks and horsemen's groups will have to negotiate the percentage of revenue that will go toward purses and breed development from video lottery terminals.
Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland signed a directive July 13 instructing the director of the Ohio Lottery to immediately begin taking steps to implement video lottery terminals at the seven racetracks in Ohio. But questions remain as to how the racing and breeding industry will benefit.
Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland said July 10 he will sign an executive order authorizing video lottery terminals at Ohio's seven racetracks, but questions remain as to how much revenue -- if any -- purses and breed development will receive.
Video lottery terminals at the seven racetracks in Ohio may be authorized by an executive order from Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland, a newspaper reported July 10.
Tougaloo, a four-time Ohio champion, was euthanized June 9 at age 26 because of complications from the infirmities of old age.
As Ohio racetracks are busy working on a plan for racetrack gaming, horsemen's groups are lobbying the state legislature to get behind Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland's proposal for video lottery terminals at tracks.
Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, in search of money to balance the state budget, on June 19 proposed putting racetrack video lottery terminals into the budget bill.
Thistledown race track in North Randall, Ohio made a required $36,000 payment toward a bond, which allows it to remain open, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported June 17 on its Web site, cleveland.com.
The Kentucky Equine Education Project is organizing a rally June 17 in the Capitol Rotunda to drum up support for legislation that would financially assist the horse industry.
Ohio racing still has its supporters, who are finding ways to capitalize on declining purses and a shrinking foal crop in the face of competition from racetracks with gaming in neighboring states.
Trainer Wesley Ward, who plans a venture to the Royal Ascot meet in England this year, came away from River Downs very pleased with the performances of members of his stable that prepped in front of the public at the Ohio track May 24.
Hundreds of people who make their living in Ohio's horseracing and breeding industry rallied at the state capital May 19 to support a plan for video lottery terminals at the state's seven racetracks.
As Kentucky's equine industry awaits word on whether Gov. Steve Beshear will call a special legislative session that could have racetrack gaming on the agenda, representatives of the state's racetracks and horsemen's groups will hold a press conference May 20 to discuss the state of the horse business. Meanwhile, Ohio horseracing interests plan a statehouse rally May 19 to lobby for legislative relief.
Host track Thistledown, the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, and the Ohio State Racing Commission are discussing ways to restore the grade II Ohio Derby in 2009, officials said April 21.
Kentucky Sen. Damon Thayer, who sponsored the legislation that resulted in Kentucky's Breeders' Incentive Fund, has inquired about another method of garnering funds for the state's Thoroughbred industry.
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.
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.
Saying five of the state's seven racetracks will close without assistance from the legislature, the Ohio State Racing Commission March 19 released a draft plan for 14,000 video lottery terminals that would be located at tracks.
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.
In anticipation of a push by a consortium for casino gambling in Ohio's four largest cities, the Ohio State Racing Commission is formulating its own legislative proposal for video lottery terminals at the state's seven racetracks.
The marquee race at River Downs in Ohio will now be titled the $200,000 Budweiser Select Cradle Stakes. Since 1977, the Miller Brewing Co. had sponsored Ohio's richest race for 2-year-olds.
Marble Cliff, the Ohio-bred turned Kentucky-bred stripped of stakes wins in 2008 after a racing commission investigation, finally got his first "official" victory--in West Virginia.
Ohio is among the weakest when it comes to Thoroughbred purses, but it's about to have the strongest rules governing registration of state-bred horses.
Poor track conditions led Beulah Park near Columbus, Ohio, to cancel the second through ninth races Feb. 2-3, and the full card Feb. 4.
A winter storm that has spanned half the country has led to cancellation of live racing and full-card simulcast programs at various tracks.
Beulah Park has canceled live racing for Jan. 17 because of continued frigid temperatures and a prediction of snow.
Because of an ominous forecast for bitter Arctic cold, compounded by strong winds, the New York Racing Association has decided to cancel its scheduled live race card at Aqueduct Jan. 16. Beulah Park in Ohio also canceled its Jan. 16 program because of frigid temperatures.
Ohio Thoroughbred breeders would be licensed by the state for a fee each year and face serious penalties -- including a suspension of up to 10 years -- should they violate rules governing registration of state-bred horses under regulations proposed by the Ohio State Racing Commission.
Requests by Beulah Park and River Downs to schedule their customary Thoroughbred meets for 2009 were officially granted Dec. 19 by the Ohio State Racing Commission.
Racetrack management and horsemen in Ohio struck an agreement Dec. 16 that will reinstate more than 160 Thoroughbred racing dates at Beulah Park and River Downs in 2009, and save more than 1,000 horses at Beulah Park from being forced out of the track's stable area by Dec. 27.
With a little more than two weeks remaining before the scheduled shutdown of the barn area at Beulah Park, management and horsemen still have no deal to continue live racing in January. But developments on a national level could quickly turn things around.
Marble Cliff, disqualified in all five of his starts -- including two stakes wins--after it was determined he wasn't Ohio-registered, returns to the races a maiden in search of his "first" victory the evening of Dec. 12 at Turfway Park.
The trainer and identifier involved in an incident in which the wrong horse ran in a Nov. 19 race at Beulah Park have been fined and suspended by the track's stewards.
The Ohio Racing Commission has confirmed it is investigating a Nov. 19 incident at Beulah Park in which the track identifier failed to discover before the fourth race a different horse than was entered by trainer owner/trainer Enzo Canelo ran and crossed the wire first.
An Ohio lawmaker whose district includes River Downs said Nov. 26 he plans to introduce legislation in 2009 for casino-style gaming that would support the horse racing and breeding in the state.
A study released by Ohio State Racing Commission offers a short-term action plan and a long-term strategy for the struggling horseracing industry in the Buckeye State, but one racetrack official said the quickest fix lies with the pen of Gov. Ted Strickland.
Winter racing at Beulah Park was plowed under and the spring/summer meet at River Downs went up in flames Nov. 21 when the Ohio State Racing Commission awarded 2009 dates that represent a loss of more than 160 days of Thoroughbred racing at the two tracks.
A recent deal that allowed expanded distribution of the Fair Grounds racing signal was hailed by some as a step forward in the months-long nationwide dispute between horsemen, racetracks, and advance deposit wagering entities. But some horsemen's groups are categorizing the development as a step backwards in an overall plan to secure higher revenue shares for purses from a growing wagering segment.
Ohio voters Nov. 4 rejected a proposed $600-million casino -- the fourth time plans for expanded gambling in the state have been turned down since 1990.
About 1,000 Thoroughbreds could be forced to leave the grounds of Beulah Park by the end of this year if the racetrack and horsemen's association don't have a deal for advance deposit wagering revenue in place by Nov. 21, the day the Ohio State Racing Commission will award racing dates for 2009.
Just days before Ohioans vote on whether to authorize a constitutional amendment allowing for a casino in southwestern Ohio, the state Department of Agriculture announced an 11-member Equine Industry Advisory Task Force charged with promoting and strengthening the state's horse industry.
Beulah Park, locked in a dispute that centers on revenue from advance deposit wagering, intends to resume live racing Oct. 22 but with greatly reduced purses and no export of its signal outside of Ohio.
Due to an ongoing dispute with the horsemen, Beulah Park has canceled live racing for Oct. 18.
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