Horse owner Mike Pegram in line to takeover troubled Fair Grounds.

Horse owner Mike Pegram in line to takeover troubled Fair Grounds.


Pegram Would Get 86% of Fair Grounds

Horse owner Mike Pegram would gain 86% of the Fair Grounds racetrack under a deal with the current track ownership, according to testimony presented at a United States Bankruptcy Court hearing Friday.

The New Orleans Times-Picayune reported that the Krantz family, which holds about 80% of the track, would retain 11%, citing court documents. Bryan Krantz, Fair Grounds' president and general manager, would be paid $200,000 annually for five years and have a seat on the track's board of directors as vice chairman.

Minority shareholders would maintain hold on the remaining stock.

According to a statement from Krantz, Fair Grounds petitioned for a conditional release from Chapter 11 bankruptcy and anticipates that the court will rule by Aug. 31.

The court withheld approval Friday because it wants proof that the track can produce $27 million to meet its immediate debts – $23 million up front to the horsemen and $4 million to other creditors – before it will accept the petition.

Fair Grounds' $25 million settlement with the Louisiana Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, which includes the racetrack's partnership deal with Pegram, was approved Friday.

Fair Grounds and the LHBPA reached agreement on Aug. 6 over a $90 million judgement against the track that was rendered in March over a decade-long dispute over video poke revenues. The settlement helped avert a scheduled auction of the storied New Orleans track.

The subsequent agreement between Fair Grounds and Pegram signed Aug. 16 allowed the track to pay off the horsemen. Terms of the Pegram partnership were not disclosed.