Arlington Park has asked the Illinois Racing Board for approval to open its 2004 season April 28, two weeks ahead of the track's traditional Mother's Day opener. If granted, the request would take the Kentucky Derby simulcast rights away from National Jockey Club, which hosted Derby Day this year during its spring meet at Hawthorne Race Course.
Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, in a major reversal of form, has announced he will veto any expansion of gaming in Illinois, including a plan to put slot machines at racetracks.
The Illinois Racing Board Tuesday approved two new off-track betting parlors, bringing to 25 the number of off-track wagering sites in the state.
A key Illinois lawmaker has unveiled comprehensive gaming legislation that would authorize 3,200 slot machines for Illinois racetracks.
A tight state budget and political maneuvering are combining to brighten the prospect for approval of slot machines at racetracks in Illinois.
Illinois harness horsemen have ended a 2 1/2-month entry-box boycott with a deal that makes new state-authorized funding for all Illinois racing interests even more vital.
Consolidation came to Illinois racing with a financial question mark on the first day of March as National Jockey Club opened its winter-spring meet at Hawthorne Race Course.
An ongoing entry-box boycott by Illinois harness horsemen shut down live racing at Balmoral Park and Maywood Park for the first two weeks of 2003, with no end in sight and potential implications for the scheduled resumption of Thoroughbred racing in March.
Santa won't be bringing any $40,000 checks to the people holding consolation tickets in the Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick Six.
The release of money to holders of Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick 6 consolation tickets remains on hold, with no definitive date for resolution in sight.
The Illinois Racing Board, without prior notice and over the angry objections of some track operators, on Nov. 12 slapped an immediate ban on wagers involving more than three races. It also put off licensing two tote companies for next year.
After a lot of sound and fury during a 10-hour meeting, the Illinois Racing Board produced a 2003 racing schedule that honors the status quo and enables a semi-merger between Hawthorne Race Course and Sportsman's Park.
The Illinois Racing Board enters a crucial decision-making month with new leadership that has no direct experience in any aspect of horse racing.
Given the consolidation of Sportsman's Park and Hawthorne Race Course, and a bid by Balmoral Park for Thoroughbred dates, the Illinois Racing Board will have a lot to sort through before it slots the 2003 racing schedule in the state.
Sportsman's Park will merge operations with its next-door neighbor, Hawthorne Race Course, and plans to conduct all racing at Hawthorne starting next year, officials of both tracks said July 31.
Illinois racing took a multimillion-dollar hit as Gov. George Ryan sliced up this year's overall state appropriations bill to deal with a budget crisis. Among the items cut by Ryan was money for the "recapture" of purse money.
Arlington Park has several thousand seats still available for the Oct. 26 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships despite an early sales push and good demand.
Arlington Park received 6,066 applications for the initial allocation of tickets for the Oct. 26 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships.
The dispute over the $1-million Illinois Derby bonus earned by War Emblem appears headed for court. Still unresolved: Which court, and upon whose initiative?
Fierce partisan warfare over the state budget blocked a last-minute, controversial flurry of racetrack-related legislation in the final hours of the regular spring session of the Illinois General Assembly.
Fierce partisan warfare over the state budget blocked a last-minute, controversial flurry of race track-related legislation in the final hours of the "regular" spring session of the Illinois General Assembly.
No one in Illinois government seems to like the idea of slot machines at racetracks, but the proposal remained on the table as the legislature's spring session went into overtime in an attempt to find new revenue sources to solve a multibillion-dollar budget shortfall.
The latest unlikely solution for a huge Illinois state budget crisis: Slot machines at racetracks.
The decision to scratch One Tuff Fox from the Illinois Derby (gr. II) was mandated by state racing rules and was in the best interest of the wagering public, chief state Steward Eddie Arroyo said Sunday
Bob Kieckhefer -- Illinois racing. It's hard to figure out where to start thinking about the current state of affairs. Harder yet to figure out where things are going.
Sportsman's Park's meager 46-day Thoroughbred racing schedule has been severely eroded by horrible early-March weather.
An odd turn of events threatens any chance for construction of a new riverboat casino in Rosemont, Ill., that is designed to pump tens of millions of dollars a year into the state's horse racing industry.
National Jockey Club officials assured the Illinois Racing Board Wednesday that the Sportsman's Park horse racing meet set to begin March 1 is not threatened by financial problems that have closed the organization's Chicago Motor Speedway for the year. In other business, the board began the process of changing some state regulations to facilitate the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships at Arlington Park this fall.
MGM Mirage could take over efforts to build a riverboat casino in Rosemont, Ill., near O'Hare International Airport that would pump tens of millions of dollars into the horse racing industry.
Arlington Park plans to reschedule and enrich its stakes program this summer to provide a "Preview Weekend at the Park" before the Oct. 26 running of the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships.
Aided by balmy late fall weather, Hawthorne Race Course posted improved numbers for on-site and total handle during its November-December meet. Hawthorne wound up operations on New Year's Day.
In the week leading up to the Hong Kong International Races, the buzz during morning track works at the Sha Tin Racecourse was that Japan would have a very good day on Sunday. No kidding. Four races were run. Three times, the Japanese national anthem followed the winning ceremony, capped by the victory of Agnes Digital in the HK$18 million Hong Kong Cup.
Hong Kong racing officials have big dreams for a planned Asian Racing Series. "We want, in the end, to have these races build up as the world turf championship," said Hong Kong Jockey Club Director of Racing Winfried Englebrecht-Bresges.
Sportsman's Park will offer a $1-million bonus for any horse that wins next year's $500,000 Illinois Derby and then goes on to win any Triple Crown race in the subsequent months. The Illinois track released its $2.1-million stakes schedule Tuesday.
After years of wrangling, there is hope for action on a new riverboat casino near O'Hare International Airport that would pump tens of millions of dollars into Illinois horse racing.
The Illinois Racing Board has awarded Arlington Park a 109-date racing season for 2002 that will start the week of the Belmont Stakes and culminate with the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships -- possibly at Arlington.
A bill stablizing purses at Fairmount Park has been signed into law. The Collinsville, Ill., racetrack may now keep 80% of its nighttime simulcasting revenue for Thoroughbred purses.
Illinois tracks appear to be in general agreement on the proposed 2002 racing schedule
There was an odd feel to Arlington Park's mid-week opening day June 13, but by the time the first weekend of the 2001 meet was in the books, track management felt pretty good about things.
Rene Riera Jr. has resigned his post as chief state steward following an investigation into his role in distribution of a misleading workout time at Hawthorne Race Course.
Churchill Downs plans to announce this summer a major renovation project for its historic facility.
Legislation is advancing through the Illinois General Assembly that would bail out Fairmount Park from a purse-money problem that jeopardizes its future.
In 2000, Sportsman's Park suffered from its conversion to a dual-use facility for horse and motor sports racing. With sight lines and other fan amenities compromised, attendance and handle sagged. To address the problems, Sportsman's Park spent several million dollars during the past year to improve its facility, then implemented an extensive fan outreach program to show off the changes.
Fairmount Park's live meet, delayed more than a month by a crippling purse dispute, is finally under way. But the future of the track, located just across the Mississippi River from St. Louis, Mo., is in the hands of the Illinois legislature.
The state-of-the-art drainage system at Sportsman's Park fell victim to a late-season snowstorm that forced cancellation of racing after the second race on Friday (March 16) and the entire St. Patrick's Day card on Saturday.
Full fields, reasonably good weather and a flock of new fan amenities greeted the opening of the Chicago-area racing season Friday at Sportsman's Park. The combination drew on-track attendance of 5,281, up sharply from last year's opening-day crowd of 4,224, a Sportsman's spokesman said.
They won't be seeing it anytime soon, but Illinois racetracks and horse owners each can expect about $10 million a year as their cut of a Cook County riverboat casino. There has been speculation - sometimes wild speculation - since the 1999 revision of Illinois gaming and racing laws about how much racing can expect as its 15 percent share of the adjusted gross annual revenue from the boat. The fiscal 2002 Illinois budget presented by Gov. George Ryan on Feb. 21 provides a semi-official answer: $20 million, split 50/50 between purses and tracks.
The Illinois Racing Board is satisfied that Fairmount Park officials are making progress to improve conditions in the track's stable area. The IRB earlier this year took Fairmount General Manager Brian Zander to task for poor drainage, poor maintenance and other shortcomings. At Tuesday's regularly scheduled February meeting, Zander reported on progress.
They fired up the boiler and tooted the whistle but the riverboat casino that's supposed to pour millions of dollars into Illinois racing still hasn't been able to get up a head of steam. And, after the latest setback before the Illinois Gaming Board, it appears it could be many months -- or even years -- before the boat floats.
The action removes a roadblock to construction of a riverboat casino, some revenue from which will be used to pump money into the Illinois racing industry.
Most Popular Stories
- Racing Voices: The Fastest Horse in the World
- KHRC Drug Tests: Turfway Meet 'Cleanest'
- Lord Windermere Prevails in Gold Cup Photo
- Secretariat Celebration Set for March 29
- Bath Time for Hoppertunity
- KY House Speaker: Gambling Amendment Dead
- Kentucky Horsemen Prepped on New Drug Rules
- Trainer Michael D'Angelo Dies at 55
- TimeformUS Saturday Plays
- Fair Grounds Hall of Fame Inducts Proud Spell