Businessman purchased Turf Paradise in 2000; battles with major league sports, Native American casinos for the entertainment dollar in recession-battered economy in Phoenix metroplex
Retired jockey Flavio Martinez III, who rode two-time Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) winner Da Hoss the first three times the gelding raced, died unexpectedly Feb. 17 in Albuquerque, N.M.
Citing a decline of in-state wagering, Turf Paradise in Phoenix, Arizona announced Jan. 18 that it would reduce the purses of six stakes races.
Lonny Powell, a longtime industry official who has worked on the racetrack and regulatory sides, has been appointed director of the Arizona Department of Racing. Powell, currently a consultant, will begin his new job Jan. 4, 2010.
Six-year-old Twin Sparks eclipsed the world dirt record for six furlongs when he clocked a time of 1:06.49 in winning the $50,000 Caballos Del Sol Handicap at Phoenix's Turf Paradise Nov. 21.
Jockey Jake Barton earned the 2,000th win of his career when he brought favored Song of Pirates from off the pace to win the third race at Turf Paradise Jan. 20.
Losing mount fees for jockeys riding at Turf Paradise will be increased beginning January 1, 2009.
Jockeys Carl Williams and Alberto Higuera were released from John C. Lincoln Hospital after suffering injuries in a spill during the running of a race Sunday at Turf Paradise.
Northwestern jockey Sandi Gann announced her retirement Aug. 29. She is the first woman to win a riding title at Turf Paradise.
Racing photographer Jack Coady Sr. succumbed to a battle with cancer at his home in Glendale, Ariz. Aug. 4. He was 80.
Turf Paradise has named an opening-day stakes race after longtime track announcer Luke Kruytbosch, who died July 14 in Evansville, Ind.
Luke Kruytbosch, the track announcer at Churchill Downs and Ellis Park, was found dead July 14 in his Evansville, Ind. apartment, according to published reports. He was 46.
It was the second win in six starts for the 3-year-old Formal Gold colt, who had just broke his maiden less than a month before at Santa Anita.
The 3-year-old In Excess colt looks for his second consecutive stakes score Feb. 9 at Turf Paradise in Arizona.
The University of Arizona's Race Track Industry Program is creating a scholarship in the name of the late Joseph F. Joyce Jr., a longtime horse racing executive and founder of the Arlington Million, the world's first $1-million Thoroughbred race.
- By Jon Forbes
Turf Paradise hopes to improve upon the previous season's record daily purse distribution at its 2007-08 race meet, which commenced Oct. 5. So far, things seems headed in the right direction.
- By Jon Forbes
Simulcast wagering on Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse races returned to Pima County, Ariz., Sept. 27, in time for the 2007-2008 Turf Paradise meeting, which starts Oct. 5.
- By Jon Forbes
Account wagering companies no longer are accepting wagers from Arizona residents due to a law that took effect Sept. 19. Violation of the law is a class six felony, which could mean jail time.
- By Jon Forbes
Bettors in the Tucson, Ariz., area are again able to wager on horseracing simulcasts, but whether that will be the case in early September remains to be seen.
Tie Rod proved deadly in the Jan. 26 Rattlesnake Snakes, the final prep for the Turf Paradise Derby in February.
Joseph F. Joyce Jr., founder of the world's first million-dollar race for Thoroughbreds, the Arlington Million, died Monday, Nov. 27, at the age 77.
Turf Paradise concluded it 50th anniversary season May 21 with substantial increases in attendance and handle.
The 17-year-old apprentice Kyle Kaenel, out since April with two fractured vertebrae and a broken shoulder, rode his first winner since being injured when he brought home Edward Fortino's 3-year-old Dobson in the sixth race at Hawthorne on Sunday.
Turf Paradise's 49th season of racing ended Sunday, with the Phoenix, Arizona track reporting a 2% across-the-board increase in wagering during the 160-day stand (seven days of racing were cancelled due to extreme weather).
Matching Giacomo's unbelievable victory in Saturday's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) at 50-1 was Christopher Hertzog's loss of his $864,253 Derby Superfecta ticket Saturday and then having it found 24 hours later at Turf Paradise racetrack in Phoenix, Arizona.
Sixteen-year-old apprentice jockey Kyle Kaenel completed the abbreviated race week at Turf Paradise March 29 with 13 victories in four days, including back-to-back four-baggers.
Jockey Leslie Mawing registered his 1,000th career win when he guided Wata Sunrise ($5.40) to victory in the ninth race Friday at Turf Paradise.
For the second consecutive day, live racing was canceled at Arizona's Turf Paradise Saturday due to unsafe track conditions caused by severe weather in the Phoenix area.
Northern California invader Lost in the Fog, a 2-year-old colt trained by Greg Gilchrist, established a track record at Turf Paradise Sunday when he won the 6 1/2-furlong Arizona Juvenile Stakes in 1:13.55.
State and federal officials raided the Turf Paradise barn area Dec. 15 and found performance-enhancing substances that may have been used on racehorses.
Turf Paradise recorded its best race meet in 48 years by posting gains in both on and off track handle and attendance figures as the 167-day live race meet came to a close May 16 at the Phoenix, Arizona, track.
Eight-time stakes winner Taiaslew is the 123-pound highweight in a field of nine entered for the $100,000 Phoenix Gold Cup Handicap for 3-year-olds and up at six furlongs March 13 at Turf Paradise in Arizona.
Racing at Turf Paradise was canceled Saturday due to unsuitable track conditions. The $40,000 Cactus Handicap was rescheduled for March 12.
Jockey Glenn W. Corbett won five races at Turf Paradise Friday.
The live racing season ends Sunday at Monmouth Park near Oceanport, N.J., and at Assiniboia Downs in Winnipeg, but as those parks prepare to lay low for the winter, Hawthorne, Oak Tree, and Turf Paradise are gearing up for openings this weekend.
Turf Paradise will open its 47th season of live racing with a 169-day meet, running from Sept. 26 through May 16, 2004. Live racing will be conducted five days a week, Friday through Tuesday, with first post set for 12:30 pm.
Live racing at Turf Paradise was canceled Sunday due to "unsafe track conditions."
Marshall Cassidy, the voice of racing in New York from 1979 to 1990, will return to the announcer's booth, this time at Turf Paradise in Phoenix, Ariz. He will call the races at Turf Paradise beginning Oct. 25 through Nov. 2.
The Coalition for Arizona, which receives its primary funding from Turf Paradise and the Phoenix Greyhound Park, has introduced "Joe Arizona" as their spokesman to promote Proposition 201, a gaming initiative on the Arizona November ballot that would allow slot machines at racetracks.
Growth in simulcast wagering helped stabilize Turf Paradise's average daily handle and attendance even though the Phoenix area racetrack ran two more days than it did during its 2000-01 meet.
According to an article in the Feb. 5 edition of the Arizona Republic legislation has been introduced to allow Thoroughbred and Greyhound tracks to operate video lottery terminals (VLTs) at their facilities.
One Thoroughbred race track and three Greyhound race tracks have joined forces to lobby the Arizona Legislature to install video lottery terminals in the their facilities. The group comprises of Turf Paradise, a Thoroughbred track in Phoenix, Tucson Greyhound Park, and American Greyhound Racing, the company that owns both Apache Greyhound Park and Phoenix Greyhound Park.
Total handle at Turf Paradise increased 9% to an estimated $334.2 million for its 165-day meet that ended May 22.
Claiming Crown preview days have been scheduled at four racetracks in anticipation of the main event, which is set for Aug. 4 at Canterbury Park in Minnesota. The preview days will feature races with conditions identical to those of the Claiming Crown.
Jim Powell, who won eight riding titles at Turf Paradise, was found dead March 13.
The second of three pools in Churchill Downs' Kentucky Derby Future Wager is underway and it will offer the first opportunity for racing fans in Arizona to attempt to select the winner of Kentucky Derby 127 weeks in advance of the race.
TVG will feature live on-location coverage of the 46th running of the Phoenix Gold Cup, Turf Paradise's $100,000 six furlong sprint for three year olds and upward, this weekend. Coverage from the Valley of the Sun will begin at 2 pm (EST) on Saturday, March 11 with TVG racing analyst and host, Caton Bredar live from Turf Paradise. Bredar will provide interviews with trainers, jockeys, owners and track personnel as well as in-depth analysis of events leading up to, during, and after the race.
And you thought we were just going to flutter into February, with barely a breeze being stirred. It just goes to prove once again that the only sure thing about life on the Derby trail is its unpredictability. Instead of simply gliding along until the Fountain of Youth in two weeks, the 3-year-old picture hurtled into the new month on falcons' wings, thanks to several awesome performances.
- By Tom LaMarra
Who's in and who's out? Even the National Thoroughbred Racing Association may not know for a few more days -- at least. At the end of October, 22 racetracks announced they would not renew their memberships in the NTRA for 2001. But that number appears to have grown in recent weeks. Or has it? Though the NTRA had hoped for commitments from racetracks and horsemen's groups late last year, the "deadline" was extended into 2001 while the NTRA continued negotiations with Magna Entertainment, which owns seven tracks, and officials in the Mid-Atlantic region, where 12 tracks defected.
Turf Paradise is withholding its membership in the National Thoroughbred Racing Association because it claims it's being ignored, but the NTRA says it has had regular dialogue with the Arizona track.