Two Chicago-area harness tracks with the same ownership voluntarily filed for bankruptcy protection Dec. 24 "to ensure continued operations," officials said.
The Illinois Racing Board is scrambling to cope with a huge civil judgment against the state's harness tracks that probably will push them into bankruptcy and threatens to impact Thoroughbred operations.
A bitter dispute between harness horsemen and Chicago-area tracks, threatening the industry's crucial legislative agenda, came to a head Feb. 17 with a victory for horsemen before the Illinois Racing Board.
Requests for 2009 racing dates in Illinois show a few overlaps, including a month between Arlington Park and Hawthorne Race Course in late summer and early fall.
Don Amos, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Magna Entertainment Corp. announced Tuesday that Bill Murphy has been appointed vice president and general manager of racing operations at Gulfstream Park.
The Jan. 2 closing-day Thoroughbred program at Hawthorne Race Course may be the last live racing action of any kind in the Chicago area for a while. A dispute over purses has resulted in cancellation of harness racing at Balmoral Park and Maywood Park on the first two days of the New Year.
Woodbine Entertainment Group announced July 2 that Canadian wagers on Balmoral Park, a Chicago-based harness track, will for the first time be combined with the U.S. host track's pools, giving customers in both countries the same winning payout prices.
Churchill Downs Inc. reported a gain in earnings for 2002 but indicated it's looking to sell Ellis Park, the western Kentucky racetrack it purchased in 1998 as part of a $22 million package. The company's financial statement for 2002 was released Feb. 11.
The owners of Balmoral Park and Maywood Park in Illinois are interested in purchasing Ellis Park, the western Kentucky racetrack owned by Churchill Downs Inc., according to published reports.
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.
The Illinois Racing Board Monday turned back an effort by Maywood Park Trotting Association and Balmoral Racing Club to strip the National Jockey Club of its intertrack wagering licenses in Peru, Joliet, and Crestwood.
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.
An Illinois appeals court has upheld action by the state’s racing board to award harness dates for this year to Balmoral Park and Maywood Park.
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