The Illinois General Assembly has approved and sent to Gov. Rod Blagojevich legislation that would provide as much as $35 million a year in subsidies for Illinois racing--but only for two years.
- By Tom LaMarra
Revised legislation that would provide the Illinois horse racing industry with casino revenue passed the state House of Representatives 70-32 April 26 and heads to the Senate for consideration.
Sure, Brother Derek should win the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I). Yes, you can pick out of a hat in the suddenly depleted Wood Memorial (gr. I), And, of course, Cause to Believe and Sweetnorthernsaint look to be the standouts in the Illinois Derby (gr. II). But it's what comes out of these races that will prove to be more important.
- By Tom LaMarra
Legislation that would grant Fairmount Park a tax break worth almost $1.4 million a year has passed both houses of the Illinois legislature and awaits the signature of Gov. Rod Blagojevich. If approved, the track could increase purses and racing dates, according to reports.
With time running out in the spring session, legislation that would divert more than $50 million a year from Illinois riverboat casinos to the horse racing industry has stalled in the state House of Representatives.
- By Tom LaMarra
Legislation that would funnel more than $50 million a year to the Illinois racing industry cleared a House committee March 1, but it failed to win enough support after a third reading March 3.
Original Spin, winner of the Arlington Washington Lassie (gr. III) and third-place finisher in the Alberto VO5 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) as a 2-year-old, edged Fort Prado for Illinois-bred Horse of the Year honors in 2005.
Hawthorne Race Course Tuesday announced a shakeup in management, with one member of the Carey family replacing another at the helm.
The International Festival of Racing, featuring the Arlington Million (gr. IT), tops a 2006 schedule that includes 26 stakes races worth $5,425,000 during 95 days of racing at Arlington Park, beginning May 5 and running through Sept. 12.
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.
Just days after the Illinois Gaming Board revoked the license of Emerald Casino, one-time rival communities once again are preparing to join a prolonged battle for the lucrative riverboat license.
The Winners Federation, formed in 1994 with a focus on drug and alcohol programs, has adopted a strategic plan that will involve the organization in health and welfare issues for all racetrack workers.
Arlington Park announced today that Kevin Greely has been named vice president of racing and racing secretary. Greely joins Arlington Park following more than a decade with the Emirates Racing Association and Dubai Racing Club, where he served as secretary to the association and racing secretary.
The Illinois Racing Board disqualified Indy Groove from her victory in the Sept. 3 Arlington Matron (gr. III) because the mare tested positive for naproxen, an anti-inflammatory (Class IV) that is prohibited on race day in the state. Tom Proctor, who trains the mare for Glen Hill Farm, was fined $1,000.
Churchill Downs Inc. announced Dec. 12 that Clifford C. Goodrich would leave his position as president of Arlington Park, the company's racetrack in Arlington Heights, Ill., in order to pursue other professional and personal interests.
A proposal by Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan to ban riverboat gambling in Illinois has been dry-docked in the state Senate.
Longtime Chicago trainer Mike Weissman passed away Oct. 20 following a massive heart attack he sustained Oct. 19.
The equine industry's work on behalf of unwanted horses continued to gain momentum Sept. 21 when representatives from 20 organizations met to advance efforts that began at the nation's first Unwanted Horse Summit in Washington, D.C. in April.
Arlington Park will run from May 5 to Sept. 14 next year, a total of 95 racing dates under the schedule announced by the Illinois Racing Board.
Cartwright, who appears poised for another sire title in Illinois, was euthanized Aug. 10 after breaking his right femur in an accident in an Illinois veterinary clinic.
Frank Gabriel Jr. is leaving his position as executive vice president of racing and racing secretary at Arlington Park to work for the Dubai Racing Club.
Hawthorne Race Course in Chicago announced an across-the-board purse increase for its meeting that will run Sept. 23 through Dec. 31.
One year ago trainer Dale Romans saddled 3-year-old Kitten's Joy to an impressive 3 1/4-length win in the Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) at Arlington Park. This year the Kentucky-based trainer hopes to return to the winner's circle when the son of El Prado takes the gate for the Aug. 13 Arlington Million (gr. IT).
A second Unwanted Horse Summit has been scheduled for Sept. 21, and in the interim, a steering committee will consider ways to formally structure the endeavor.
Edward Joseph Sukley's homebred Purim, unbeaten in three starts, will face seven 3-year-olds in Saturday's American Derby (gr. IIT) at Arlington Park. The American Derby goes as the fifth race and is the first of three graded stakes on the program with an approximate post of 2:56 p.m. CDT.
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.
Morton Grove, Illinois, a Chicago suburb once considered as the site of an off-track betting parlor, has modified its zoning laws to preclude any future incursions by wagering interests.
Jockey Jesse Campbell, who won the first race of his career at Arlington Park in 1995, scored his 1,000th victory when he guided High Expectations to a six-length tally in the $88,900 Springfield Stakes Saturday during Arlington's Prairie State Festival.
Four Illinois divisional champions from 2004 are prominent among 65 horses entered for the six $75,000-added stakes races that comprise the sixth annual Prairie State Festival to be held Saturday at Arlington Park.
Arlington Park, fresh off a successful Memorial Day program, said attendance thus far is up 16.5% from the corresponding period in 2004.
The 7-year-old Crafty Shaw, who surpassed the $1-million mark in career earnings late last year, makes his seasonal debut as 119-pound highweight Saturday in the Hanshin Cup Handicap (gr. III) at Arlington Park.
Arlington Park plans to showcase its turf racing during the 2005 season by offering the Turf Trifecta, a $100,000 guaranteed gross trifecta pool offered on every race that is actually run on the turf at on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
Sumaya Us Stables' Isola Piu Bella has been installed as the morning line favorite for Saturday's $250,000 Sixty Sails Handicap (gr. III) at Hawthorne.
The Jockeys' Guild got a lot of sympathy but no immediate action from the Illinois Racing Board Tuesday on the issues of medical insurance and the scale of weights.
Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, after long opposition, has opened the door to the expansion of gaming. But his education-funding proposal doesn't specifically include the new casinos and support for racetracks that would make it politically viable in the state House and Senate.
The Illinois Racing Board Thursday moved to relax rules governing trace amounts of cocaine found in horses after racing.
The International Festival of Racing, featuring the 23rd running of the Arlington Million (gr. I), tops a 2005 schedule that includes 25 stakes races worth $5,325,000 during 94 days of racing at Arlington Park from May 13 through Sept. 18.
The insurance policy for jockeys at Arlington Park covered all of jockey Gary Stevens' expenses after he was injured in a fall at the wire in last year's Arlington Million (gr. IT).
A group of 10 3-year-olds passed the entry box for Saturday's Hawthorne Derby (gr. IIIT), one of the season's last major stakes races restricted to sophomores. Al and Saundra Kirkwood's European import Gwaihir is the highweighted entry at 117 pounds.
Entries were drawn Thursday for the opening day of Hawthorne's fall Thoroughbred meet, scheduled to get underway Friday, Sept. 24. The 10-race card begins a three-day weekend of racing before the track falls into its normal, five-day Wednesday through Sunday schedule.
The Illinois Racing Board has approved a 2005 Chicagoland Thoroughbred racing schedule that resembles this year's slate.
A pair of grade III stakes for 2-year-olds--the $200,000 Arlington-Washington Breeders' Cup Futurity and the $100,000 Arlington-Washington Lassie--will bring the curtain down on the Arlington Park meet Sept. 19. Six colts are entered in the Futurity, and nine fillies in the Lassie.
Royal Roberto, one of Illinois' most successful stallions, died in July of a heart attack.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Thursday that it will offer another "National Pick 4" wager this Saturday, Aug. 14, as part of its "NTRA Super Saturday" series that will be featured on the ABC and ESPN networks.
An international field of 13 runners will attempt to capture one of the most prestigious turf races on the North American calendar Saturday as they line up for the $1 million Arlington Million (gr. IT) over 10 furlongs at Arlington Park.
A small but strong field of seven 3-year-olds passed the entry box at Arlington Park Wednesday--drawn for a shot at the purse in Saturday's running of the $400,000 Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT).
Arlington's International Festival of Racing Aug. 14 is opening the gates for a German invasion with imports Sabiango, Epalo, and Aubonne.
The Illinois legislature adjourned its "overtime" spring session without acting on a package of gaming reforms that could have brought slot machines to racetracks.
Multiple stakes winner Crimson Classic has arrived at Hooper Roff's Pyaar Acres near Lexington.
Wertheimer & Frere's Olmodavor -- high-weighted at 121 pounds -- and Lakeside Farm's recent grade I stakes winner Colonial Colony headline a field of five in the Washington Park Handicap (gr. II) Saturday at Arlington Park.
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