The West Virginia legislature ended a short special session May 21 and apparently left more than $14 million in gaming revenue to purses and breed development programs for horse and dog racing intact for fiscal year 2015.
Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort has asked the West Virginia Racing Commission for permission to drop 11 live racing programs in December and reduce the number of races it is scheduled to run in October and November.
The Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association said May 9 it has given Gulfstream Park recommendations regarding a Gulfstream plan for ending head-to-head weekend racing with neighboring Calder.
- By Tom LaMarra
A decline in commingled pari-mutuel handle on United States racing in April versus the same month last year left total wagering down 3.08% for the first four months of 2014, according to Equibase statistics.
Total purses generated by slot machines in Pennsylvania in 2013 dropped 6.57% from the previous year according to a benchmark report released April 9 by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
Two Ohio racetracks will pay 10.5% of video lottery terminal revenue to purses, an official with the state's racing and breeding programs said April 5.
With the harsh winter of 2014 finally abating, Thoroughbred racing's key economic indicators of wagering and purses declined only slightly in March, according to figures released by Equibase Co.
The Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association said it expects purse money for Pennsylvania-bred racehorses to increase this year.
The West Virginia Legislature March 14 passed a fiscal year 2014-15 budget that will redirect 10% of racing's share of gaming revenue to other programs.
A surplus in the Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund will allow Turfway Park to increase purses for allowance and maiden special weight races through the end of its winter/spring meet.
Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort will kick off its 210-day season March 1 with average daily overnight purses of about $115,000, a figure on par with 2013.
Overnight purses at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots have been reduced 10% for the rest of the current race meet, track officials said Feb. 20.
Turfway Park expects much warmer temperatures the week of Feb. 16 that will allow proper maintenance of its Polytrack surface and a return to live racing Feb. 21.
Citing robust January business, Oaklawn Racing and Gaming announced it will increase all overnight purses by as much as $2,000 per race starting with the Saturday, Feb. 8 card.
Total on-site pari-mutuel wagering at Delaware Park in 2013 totaled $149.2 million, down 4.1% from $155.5 million in 2012, according to the annual report released Feb. 6 by the Delaware Thoroughbred Racing Commission.
Despite an increase in race days, wagering on U.S. races in January of 2014 was similar to the amount of handle on U.S. races in January 2013.
It appears rather than having one percentage for the amount of revenue that goes to purses from video lottery terminals, Ohio could have a different number for each of its seven racetracks.
An economic impact study shows the Thoroughbred and Greyhound racing and breeding industries account for at least $321 million a year in total business volume in West Virginia.
Prairie Meadows Racetrack & Casino will boost the standard minimum purse for unrestricted stakes to $75,000 when its Thoroughbred meet runs April 18 to Aug. 9.
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.
- By Tom LaMarra
Wagering on harness races in the United States increased 6.07% in 2013, while purses paid were up 4%, according to statistics released Jan. 6 by the United States Trotting Association.
United States race dates declined by 3.15% in 2013 when compared to the previous year, yet total wagering and purses held steady, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by Equibase Jan. 5.
The Maryland Jockey Club reported average daily pari-mutuel handle on live racing was up 4.1% in 2013 versus 2012 thanks to growth in export wagering. Purses, meanwhile, continued to increase in Maryland.
With New Year's Eve approaching, it's time for Gulfstream Park and Calder Casino & Race Course to fire the first shots in their next battle over racing dates.
Turfway Park will increase purses for the seven stakes races on its schedule from January through March, director of racing Tyler Picklesimer announced Dec. 13.
In a civil suit filed Nov. 26 in a state court in Miami, Hialeah Park is seeking to take control of administration of its purse account from the Florida Quarter Horse Racing Association.
Buoyed by an 11% increase in total commingled pari-mutul handle for the Breeders' Cup World Championships, wagering on U.S. races improved 4.37% in November compared with the same month last year.
The Churchill Downs fall meet saw a double-digit percentage decline in average daily wagering at this year's 25-day stand that wrapped Saturday, Nov. 30.
- By Tom LaMarra
Despite 25 fewer racing programs, commingled wagering on United States races increased 8.3% in October versus the same month in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators.
Despite 12 fewer live racing days, all-sources pari-mutuel handle during the Delaware Park meet was only down about $1.5 million, while average daily handle increased 13.2%.
Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races received approval Oct. 22 to cut three live racing programs from its November schedule because of field size and purse concerns.
Following a 4.8% decline in total race days during the month of September, total wagering on U.S. racing fell 2.09% during the month but the daily average handle increased 2.8%.
Keeneland officials are expecting a typical fall meet from a horse-population perspective, and that's a good thing given increasing competition for racehorses at tracks around the country.
The Fort Erie Live Racing Consortium said it has submitted a proposal to the Ontario provincial government's Horse Racing Transition Panel to continue live racing at Fort Erie for at least the next three years.
Breeders' Cup was approved Sept. 19 to card a $150,000 stakes for Arabians on the first day of its World Championships, but not before the CHRB grilled the organization on its plan to shift all or part of the money to purses.
- By Tom LaMarra
Wagering on United States races was strong in August, with a 4.69% increase from the same month in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by Equibase Sept. 4.
Calder Casino & Race Course said it will reduce overnight purses 12% effective Aug. 30 because of changes in the Florida Thoroughbred racing landscape.
The minimum purse for grade I and grade II stakes will be raised by $50,000 for 2014. An increase for grade III stakes may be made in 2015.
The Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association said July 26 it signed a purse agreement with Calder Casino & Race Course.
An unusual deal between Canterbury Park and the Shakopee Mdewakanton Tribal Community has quickly led to increased interest in Thoroughbred breeding and racing in Minnesota.
Gulfstream Park and the Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association announced July 16 they signed a contract for the current meet that runs through Nov. 28.
The Maryland Jockey Club will try a new approach to the stakes schedule at Laurel Park, which will open Sept. 19 for a 59-day fall meet.
With a decline of 21 race days when compared with the same month a year ago, total wagering on U.S. Thoroughbred racing fell 1.57% during June, according to statistics from Equibase Company.
Horsemen will pay more to offset the cost of equine drug testing under a resolution adopted by the Ohio State Racing Commission June 27.
Monmouth Park has announced it has raised all non-stakes purses on the William Hill Haskell Invitational (gr. I) program July 28 by 20%.
The Kentucky racetrack, which will offer live racing five days in September, released a condition book that shows more stakes and hefty overnight purses, including $90,000 for 2-year-old maiden special weight events.
While the biggest wagering card of the year saw a 1% decline in handle, U.S. racing managed to register a strong month of May as pari-mutuel handle was up 3.57% compared with the same month last year.
Wagering on United States racing in April registered a small year-over-year gain, but purses were down from April in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by Equibase May 5.
Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races set another pari-mutuel handle record in April when it reported average daily handle of $1,367,336, up 1% from the same month in 2012.
After a year of uncertainty due to the cancellation of the Ontario slots-at-racetracks program, Woodbine is set to begin its 133-day Thoroughbred meet April 20.
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