The Maryland Racing Commission voted Tuesday not to intervene in the Maryland Jockey Club's decision to close the Pimlico stables for the winter. The 6-2 vote set off a flurry of angry responses from horsemen aimed primarily at Tom McDonough, commission chairman.
The Maryland Jockey Club today unveiled the 2004 Preakness logo. The 129th running of the $1,000,000 Preakness Stakes (gr. I), the middle jewel of the Visa Triple Crown, is set for May 15, 2004 at Pimlico Race Course.
In an explosive meeting marked by a commissioner's expletive-filled response to charges of discrimination, the Maryland Racing Commission voted Oct. 14 to review the Maryland Jockey Club's documentation for evicting trainers and closing the Pimlico stable for the winter.
Federal investigators are interviewing top Maryland lawmakers, as well as lobbyists, and members of the state's racing industry about Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller and his role as chairman of the Democratic Legislative Committee, a fundraising arm of the national Democratic Party.
The Maryland Jockey Club announced Friday that it will close the Pimlico Race Course backstretch from Nov. 29 until Feb. 29, 2004 in order to complete backstretch refurbishing projects. Pimlico will reopen for training on March 1, 2004.
A lawsuit against TV Games Network was filed in U.S. District Court in Baltimore by the Maryland Jockey Club for the network's inability to maintain a three-month average of $230 million in gross handle, which the suit claims is part of the contract between the two entities.
Despite one less live race day, and wet weather for over half of the live racing days, Pimlico ended its 2003 spring meet June 8 with a decrease of less than one percent in total handle from the same period in 2002. All-sources handle totaled $265.5 million compared to $266.9 million during the same period a year ago.
Full fields are expected when Colonial Downs opens its doors Friday. Colonial's 30-day meet runs through July 22nd on a Friday through Tuesday schedule with 1 p.m. post times on Saturday and Sunday and 5 p.m. post during the week. There is a special Thursday card on July 3.
For the sixth straight racing day, rain Saturday forced Pimlico to move races scheduled for the turf to the main track. The inclement weather has forced racing officials to shift grass races on 11 of 20 days, with only 20 of the 49 races scheduled on the turf making it.
Total handle on the May 17 Preakness Stakes Day program at Pimlico Race Course topped $60 million for the third consecutive year, but it was down 9.5% from last year, according to figures released May 21 by the Maryland Jockey Club.
It appears that Kentucky Derby winner Funny Cide will van down to Pimlico from New York on May 14, a day after the New York-bred puts in his final Preakness work. Owner Jack Knowlton informed Maryland Jockey Club officials of his horse's plans for the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) Wednesday afternoon.
The Maryland Jockey Club has unveiled a $420 million plan for tearing down and rebuilding its tracks and training facilities if the General Assembly adopts Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.'s proposal for slot machines at racetracks.
With the 90-day session of the General Assembly at its midpoint, the effort to legalize slot machines at Maryland racetracks has bogged down. Gov. Robert Ehrlich Jr. has gone back to the drawing board with his proposal which had, incredibly, angered nearly everyone.
Blizzard-like conditions in the Baltimore/Washington D.C. area wiped out racing at Laurel Park for the entire Presidents' Day weekend, forcing the Maryland Jockey Club to reschedule the winter meeting's two major stakes this Saturday. At Aqueduct, racing was postponed after Sunday's first race and for Monday's entire card/
Because of the snow in the Baltimore and Washington D.C. areas the Maryland Jockey Club has canceled live racing at Laurel Park Saturday and Sunday. Severe winter weather also forced Turfway Park to cancel its live racing Saturday, the third consecutive day the track has been closed.
Champion Xtra Heat has been immortalized as a bobblehead doll. The Maryland Jockey Club will distribute 4,000 Xtra Heat bobbleheads to paying customers attending the February 17th racing program, a card featuring the General George Handicap (gr. II).
Bettors on May 16-17 will be able to play the new "head-to-head wager" that debuted at the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships. The wager will be offered on the Preakness Stakes, Black-Eyed Susan Stakes, Pimlico Special, and other stakes at Pimlico Race Course those two days.
Organization bylaws and changes in the industry landscape could lead the National Thoroughbred Racing Association to tweak its structure when the board of directors meets in early February for a meeting and long-range planning retreat. Meanwhile, the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association has named John Amerman as its new NTRA representative.
The Virginia Racing Commission Jan. 15 approved a five-year deal between the Virginia Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association and Colonial Downs, and also heard of plans for a $2-million turf festival in the state.
Revitalization of Pimlico Race Course could begin immediately and be completed within 24 months if slots legislation is passed in Maryland, Magna Entertainment Corp. president Jim McAlpine told members of the Maryland General Assembly on Monday.
The Maryland Racing Commission voted unanimously Nov. 13 to approve Magna Entertainment Corp. as majority owner of Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course, turning the spotlight on Magna to begin fulfilling its promise for Maryland racing. The Preakness Stakes, second leg of the Triple Crown, is a big part of the equation.
Magna Entertainment reported across-the-board declines in revenue, net income, and earnings per share for the third quarter ending Sept. 30. The Ontario-based racing conglomerate also announced the resignation of two more directors, John York II and James Nichol, from its board of directors.
The Maryland Racing Commission approved the 2003 racing schedule at its monthly meeting. Live racing will be conducted on 220 days at Pimlico Race Course and Laurel Park next year. The 128th Preakness Stakes (gr. I) is May 17 at Pimlico.
In a compromise decision at the end of a long and difficult meeting, the owners of Rosecroft Raceway in Maryland voted to sell the Standardbred track to Centaur Inc., part owner of the Hoosier Park in Indiana and casinos in California and Colorado.
In his first public comments about specific plans for Maryland racing, Magna Entertainment chairman Frank Stronach said the company will tear down Pimlico Race Course and build a new track on the same site.
Magna Entertainment has plans to transform Maryland's premier Thoroughbred racetracks into "destination entertainment centers," and apparently expand off-track wagering in the state. At this time, though, officials are reluctant to discuss details.
A Maryland Jockey Club attorney told Maryland legislators June 25 that no deal has been made to sell Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course to Magna Entertainment, and that any deal would have to clear major regulatory hurdles.
Michael Flynn, executive vice president of the Maryland Horse Breeders Association, left the organization June 11. Flynn accepted the position earlier this year when Tim Capps resigned to take a position with the Maryland Jockey Club.