Lone Star Begins Work on Temporary Seating

Lone Star Park has begun installing 38,000 temporary seats to help accommodate an expected crowd of about 50,000 for the Oct. 30 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships.

Most of the seating should in place by Oct. 1, when a special 19-day Thoroughbred meet begins.

Lone Star, which sits on 285 acres, has about 12,000 permanent seats in its seven-level glass-enclosed grandstand and outdoor apron. Those seats will be accompanied state-of-the-art temporary bleachers, stadium seats, box seats, suites and tents.

"Little by little, the temporary structures are starting to pop up throughout the facility," Lone Star vice president and general manager Jeff Greco said in a release.

The Colonnade Group, an Alabama-based company that provides event production services, began the project in August. A team of about 25 workers has been on the scene seven days a week from late morning through nightfall.

"When it's all said and done, we'll have seats that stretch from the far turn through the homestretch and into the first turn," Greco said. "All will be accompanied by service structures that include numerous pari-mutuel windows, concessions, merchandise sales, and restrooms."

Lone Star plans to put at least three large video boards in its infield so patrons around the racetrack can follow the action.

The installation of temporary seating is part of an $8.5-million expansion plan to host the Breeders' Cup. Over the last two years, Lone Star has added permanent improvements such as three new barns (including a 96-stall, multipurpose quarantine barn), a 10,000-square-foot banquet hall named Champions, about 1,600 permanent outdoor box seats along the grandstand apron, and a widened saddling paddock and winner's circle.