Decision on River Downs Meet Shift Postponed

Racing regulators in Ohio said March 20 they still have unanswered questions.

By John Kady

The Ohio State Racing Commission March 20 postponed a decision on a plan to transfer summer racing dates at River Downs near Cincinnati to Beulah Park near Columbus.

River Downs, owned by Pinnacle Entertainment, has requested to shift its 2013 meet to Beulah Park, owned by Penn National Gaming Inc., because of construction of a new racetrack gaming facility on the property. Plans call for about 65 days of racing beginning in late May at Beulah Park, which wraps up its winter/spring meet in early May.

OSRC chairman Robert Schmitz said a decision on the move was postponed pending River Downs officials answering several questions.

The OSRC on March 27 is expected to also consider the transfer of racing licenses owned by PNGI, which wants to move Beulah Park to Austintown Township near Youngstown and Raceway Park from Toledo to Dayton. PNGI has full-scale casinos near both tracks and plans to build new racetrack gaming facilities with video lottery terminals in the new locations.