Indiana Downs to Try Earlier First Post Time

Indiana Downs to Try Earlier First Post Time
Photo: Coady Photography
Indiana Downs

On Sept. 2 Indiana Downs will transition from a 6 p.m. first post to 1:55 p.m. EST in an effort to gather market data to determine the optimal position for the track in the national horse racing market.

Racing will follow the existing Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday schedule with the exception of an earlier first post. The new schedule will remain in effect until closing day, Oct. 19.

Indiana Downs' officials seek to use this short window of time to gather empirical data and compare scheduling options. With the advent of an all Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse meet, a continuous 2013 schedule, and the increased interest in Indiana horse racing, Indiana Downs management seeks to establish its evolving racing product in the most advantageous market possible; for fans, horsemen, and athletes alike.

During the seven weeks of afternoon post times Indiana Downs' performance will be evaluated on many different levels such as: competitiveness of Indiana Downs product, guest feedback, and cohesiveness. The ultimate goal is to cultivate a fair comparison between alternate schedules and market shares in order to deliver the best racing product possible in the coming years. Indiana Downs secured this opportunity as the least invasive time period for gathering information.

While many factors have not yet been addressed, it is in Indiana Downs' interest to promptly secure an optimum performance plan for many years to come.

"We are committed to offering our fans, both locally and nationally, the best and most competitive racing experience possible," said Jon Schuster Indiana Downs' general manager of racing, in a release. "In order to accomplish this now and in the future we need to explore various options concerning the times of day and days of the week we race. Currently all live racing in Indiana is conducted at night. The end of meet post time change is a relatively short and proactive approach to gathering important information. Ultimately, our goal is to place ourselves in the best possible position for our fans and the racing industry."

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