Tim Ritvo, The Stronach Group's chief operating officer, met with racetrack owners, state legislators, and Massachusetts gaming commissioners July 24 to discuss the possibility of converting a former greyhound track into a Thoroughbred venue.
Massachusetts horsemen achieved a major victory when lawmakers reached compromise on the $40 billion 2018 budget bill that eliminates $400 million in spending yet leaves intact a significant portion of the money in the Race Horse Development Fund.
Suffolk Downs begins its short 2017 live meet July 8 with a two-day weekend racing festival format, lucrative purses, full fields, low takeout for bettors, and generous incentives for every participating owner and trainer.
As Suffolk Downs readies to open for its six days of racing this year, track officials were hard hit with the news that horses stabled at Monmouth Park will not be allowed to return to the stable area there if they are shipped to compete in Boston.
With the Race Horse Development Fund, which was created to give the struggling Massachusetts horse racing and breeding industry a lifeline, now in serious peril, Thoroughbred horsemen traveled to the state capitol in Boston to lobby lawmakers June 7.
The sale of Suffolk Downs to a major Boston real estate development company was green-lighted by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission at a public hearing March 30, but the deal will not adversely affect the six-day live meet planned for this summer.
The owners of Suffolk Downs have sent a document to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission asking for formal approval of the sale of the property to a major Boston-based real estate development company.
There is no agreement in place to sell Suffolk Downs to a real estate developer, but the property remains on the market, according to the track's management.
While there are no guarantees, the door has been left open for Suffolk Downs to continue to offer a limited number of live racing days beyond the 2017 season.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission settled a long and acrimonious dispute over simulcasting revenues between the management teams of Suffolk Downs and Raynham Greyhound Park Oct. 13 by ruling in favor of the Thoroughbred track.
While the Suffolk Downs ownership group moves forward with plans to redevelop the property as real estate, it intends to again host an abbreviated Thoroughbred meet next summer.
Suffolk Downs will host the third and final of three weekends of live racing Sept. 3-4 for its 2016 racing season.
Monmouth Park said it has received an anonymous contribution of $60,000 for its racehorse aftercare program, and thus will end a policy of charging $1,000 per horse that leaves the grounds to race at Suffolk Downs and then returns.
The financial penalty recently imposed by the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association on Monmouth Park-stabled trainers who run at Suffolk Downs and then try to return did not keep anyone away from the starting gate in Massachusetts Aug. 6.
East Boston, Mass. track will host the second of three scheduled live racing weekends.
Longtime race caller Tony Bentley will take the mike in the announcer's booth at Suffolk Downs when live racing returns to the East Boston, Mass., racetrack Aug. 6-7.
Monmouth Park has engaged Suffolk Downs in a battle over the entry box, and the horsemen feel caught in the crossfire.
Suffolk Downs, which will host the first racing programs this year in Massachusetts, attracted 192 entries for 22 races scheduled for July 9-10 as part of its six-day 2016 race meet.
A statewide referendum to allow a slots parlor adjacent to Suffolk Downs will move forward after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled June 28 the question can be on the November ballot.
The possible return of live racing to the Brockton Fairgrounds has been pushed back on the calendar after the owners requested their petition for funding from the Race Horse Development Fund be pulled from the agenda for a public hearing June 23.
The New England HBPA alleges a rival horsemen's group violated the Interstate Horseracing Act when it signed a purse contract with the Brockton Fairgrounds without its consent as the authorized horsemen’s group in Massachusetts.
Suffolk Downs received approval from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission June 9 to use $2.4 million from the Race Horse Development Fund for purses over six days of Thoroughbred racing this year.
Rockingham Park, New England's first track that debuted with a Thoroughbred meet in 1906, has reached the finish line and will shutter its doors for good Aug. 31.
Thoroughbred racing will return to Suffolk Downs for three two-day racing festivals, officials at the Massachusetts track said May 5. The mini-meets will be held in July, August, and September.
The Mass Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association and the Carney Family, owners of the Brockton Fairgrounds, have finalized a two-year purse agreement for 30 days of live racing at the facility in 2016 and 2017.
Factors like those are key in HANA's yearly racetrack rankings, as it looks at factors that affect horseplayer betting value.
In an attempt to keep Thoroughbred racing alive in Massachusetts, the New England HBPA has formed a coalition that is intent upon building a new, non-profit equine center and racetrack in the state.
An official with Rockingham Park, which remains open for simulcasts but hasn't offered live racing since 2009, confirmed March 24 that the property will be put on the market.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission took no action Dec. 17 on a request from the Massachusetts THA to be recognized as the legitimate representative of the region's owners and trainers rather than the New England HBPA.
A ballot question that would allow a slot machine parlor near Suffolk Downs has cleared a hurdle and could appear on the statewide Massachusetts ballot in November.
Live Thoroughbred racing can return to Brockton Fairgrounds for the first time since 2001 and Suffolk Downs will double the days of its live meet in 2016.
The horsemen of New England agree that live racing and breeding is in serious peril in the region, but the rival factions of owners, trainers, and breeders remain deeply divided on the optimum way to revitalize the industry.
The ownership groups of Suffolk Downs and the Brockton Fairgrounds, which has not hosted Thoroughbred racing since 2001, have filed applications with the Massachusetts Gaming Commission for live racing dates in 2016.
Kentucky Downs has named Ted Nicholson as vice president of the Franklin, Ky., track. Nicholson had been consulting with Kentucky Downs on its 2015 racing season prior to being named to this permanent position.
Bettors on track and at simulcast outlets across the country will have an incentive at Suffolk Downs Oct. 3: The pari-mutuel takeout to a rate has been lowered to 15% across the board.
Suffolk Downs has created a new stakes race, the $75,000 Suffolk Downs Distaff Turf, for the next festival day Oct. 3.
The sunny disposition of those on track was the polar opposite of the one seen last Oct. 4 for the 2014 meet's closing day, when the dismal crowd figured they were witnessing the bitter end of live racing.
Suffolk Downs management and the New England Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association are keeping the lamp lit for the Massachusetts Thoroughbred racing and breeding industry.
One year after the ownership group of Suffolk Downs announced it would no longer host live racing and subsequently shuttered the barn area, the track will reopen its doors Sept. 5 for the first of three racing programs.
Steven J. Pini, the longtime track superintendent at Suffolk Downs and a third generation employee of the racetrack, suffered a fatal heart attack Sept. 1. He was 63.
Suffolk Downs, which on Sept. 5 will offer its first live racing program in almost a year, said it will subsidize the shipping of horses from seven tracks in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions.
Live racing will return to Suffolk Downs this fall now that the Massachusetts Gaming Commission has given formal approval to the application by the racetrack for a three-day meet in 2015.
On the eve of a hearing to approve or deny the application of Suffolk Downs to hold three days of live racing this fall, track management shot down the persistent rumor that The Stronach Group plans to lease the track.
The sizable faction of horsemen dissatisfied with leadership of the New England affiliate of the Horsemen's Benevolent & Protective Association has splintered to form the new Massachusetts Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association.
Jockey Jill Jellison, who rode nearly 2,000 winners during her career, died of breast cancer July 28 in a Rhode Island Hospital. She was 51.
Though Suffolk Downs had published a condition sheet for races Aug. 8, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission July 23 delayed action on the track's application for three live racing dates this year.
A day after the Massachusetts Gaming Commission took no action June 11 on the supplemental application by Suffolk Downs for three days of live racing in 2015, local horsemen remained deeply divided on the plan.
Group expresses strong opposition to the supplemental application of Suffolk Downs to conduct three days of live racing in 2015 at Massachusetts Gaming Commission hearing.
The management of Suffolk Downs, which announced last September that live racing had come to an end, intends to bring back the Thoroughbreds for three racing programs beginning in July this year.
New England horsemen have asked Suffolk Downs to request three days of live racing this summer, and with $1.5 million available for purses, pots would average $500,000 per program.
Most Popular Stories
- Accelerate Springs Stunning Upset as Arrogate Falters
- Baffert Still Aiming Arrogate for Pacific Classic
- Big World to be Offered at Fasig-Tipton November Sale
- Abel Tasman, Elate Exit CCA Oaks in Good Order
- Hard Aces Looks for Repeat in Cougar II
- Gutsy Move Gets Abel Tasman CCA Oaks Win
- Focused Hemsworth Entered in Curlin Stakes
- Awesome Banner Posts Bullet Ahead of Vanderbilt
- Court Gives FL Breeders Right to Challenge Awards Plan
- Lady Eli Runs 'One of Her Greatest Races to Date'