The IRB also approved the 2001 stakes schedule for Arlington Park. That plan includes the addition of several stakes races, purse increases for others and a reduction in the purse for the Arlington Million from this year's $2 million back to $1 million. Overall, Arlington will offer $5.55 million in stakes purses in 2001, down slightly from $5.7 million this year.
The Illinois Racing Board Tuesday approved two new off-track betting parlors -- one of them just a few minutes' drive across the Mississippi River bridge from the St. Louis Gateway Arch.The St. Louis-area parlor will be in what is now a liquor and Lotto distribution station in Sauget, Ill. Fairmount Park officials, who will run the parlor, said it will be renovated to sell motor fuel and lottery tickets and be adjacent to food-service operations. The parlor is expected to generate $9 million in annual handle.The second OTB will be in Romeoville, near Joliet southwest along the fast-growing Interstate 55 corridor. That parlor, to be operated by Hawthorne Race Course, will be located in a free-standing building that currently houses a restaurant. Hawthorne said the parlor is projected to handle about $7.3 million annually.