Fair Grounds Race Course concluded a shortened and relocated 134th season of racing on Sunday. The meet was moved to Harrah's Louisiana Downs in Bossier City, La., after Hurricane Katrina caused significant damage to and forced the temporary closure of Fair Grounds' home site in New Orleans.
- By Ron Mitchell
As a result of damage to Fair Grounds Race Course from Hurricane Katrina, there will be no live racing there this year and plans are being made for a "unique" meet at Louisiana Downs in its place, according to Churchill Downs president and CEO Tom Meeker.
Churchill Downs Incorporated announced Friday the company is exploring options to conduct a portion of Fair Grounds Race Course's 2005-2006 live race meet at Louisiana Downs in Bossier City, La.
Harrah's Louisiana Downs announced today that they have increased purse offerings for the 2005 racing season, which opens April 29 and runs through Oct. 9, to average $210,000 per day. In addition, the purse for the Super Derby XXVI (gr. II) was increased from $500,000 to $750,000 and the distance returned to 1 1/4 miles.
Louisiana Downs concluded its 2003 racing season Sunday with increases in on-track, off-track, and total handle. With the opening of the slots casino earlier this year, the track no longer keeps attendance records.
The transfer of Louisiana Downs' horse-racing license to Harrah's Bossier City Investment Co. is nearly complete after the Louisiana Racing Commission approved the move Thursday.
Louisiana Downs concluded its 80-day meet Sunday with across-the-board increases in attendance and wagering.
Racing and breeding news and information.
A group of six to seven investors from Texas and Louisiana has issued a letter of intent to buy the 27-year-old Louisiana Downs. A state license issued in March that allows the racetrack to run 15,000 square-feet of slot machines significantly increased its value. If the deal closes, the investors intend to spend more than $90 million on renovations.
Delta Downs and Louisiana Downs hoped to have slot machines clanging away by now, but the arduous approval process has put the estimated time of arrival closer to 2002.
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