Hearing Set on Transfer of Michigan Track License

The proposed transfer of the racetrack license held by Great Lakes Downs to Richmond Racing is scheduled to be June 29 by the Office of Michigan Racing Commissioner.

Great Lakes Downs, the only all-Thoroughbred track in the state, is owned by Magna Entertainment Corp and races under the auspices of MI Racing. Richmond Racing, also tied to MEC, wants to build a racetrack in the Detroit metropolitan area.

A decision on the license transfer won't be made June 29. MEC purchased Great Lakes Downs, located in western Michigan, soon after it opened in 1999, but the company has long desired to operate a track in the metro area for business reasons. A company can't own more than one license under Michigan law.

Detroit Race Course closed in 1998. The two remaining Detroit area tracks--Hazel Park and Northville Downs--offer live harness racing and full-card simulcasting.

On July 6, the commission office will hold a hearing on an application by Windsor Downs for a license to operate a racetrack in Eaton County.