Churchill Downs Inc.

Churchill Grandstand Renovation Plan Will Debut For Derby 151

An $80-$90 million renovation to the existing grandstand at Churchill Downs Racetrack that will update ticketed seating is scheduled to begin in August with completion planned in time for the 151st GI Kentucky Derby in May 2025, the track said in a Wednesday release. The renovation of the Grandstand Club will transform existing outdoor aluminum bleachers into a combination of 8,300 new seating varieties. Updated options will include covered and uncovered stadium-style seats as well as rail boxes along the dirt track's outer rail that will offer a "trackside" seating...

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Never Mind: Louisiana Racing Commission Rescinds All Changes to Its Medication Rules

The Louisiana Racing Commission went back to square one Friday, announcing that it will adhere to the guidelines set by the Association of Racing Commissioners International (ARCI) regarding medications. The move came just nine days after the commission announced an emergency set of rules that were about to take effect and would have meant that Louisiana had, by far, the most lenient medications policies in the U.S. The withdrawal times for dozens of medications had been reduced and the threshold levels had been increased. The laundry list of changes included...

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CDI: Ruling Favoring Muth Would Create 'Media Circus' That 'Jeopardizes the Wellbeing of Horses'

Churchill Downs Inc., (CDI) invoked a horse-health argument on Monday in an attempt to get the Kentucky Court of Appeals not to overturn the banishment of trainer Bob Baffert that Thoroughbred owner Amr Zedan is trying to reverse so his 'TDN Rising Star' Muth (Good Magic) can gain entry into the GI Kentucky Derby. "This case has already drawn intense media attention," CDI stated in one of two court filings Apr. 22 that seek to halt Zedan's incorporated racing stable from moving forward with its appeal for emergency relief and...

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Zedan Vows Appeal after Judge Denies Derby Injunction

Amr Zedan's incorporated racing stable is planning an immediate appeal to a Thursday decision by a Kentucky judge who denied an injunction request that would have overturned Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI)'s ongoing ban against Bob Baffert. Zedan had initiated an Apr. 3 lawsuit in an effort to get his Baffert-trained 'TDN Rising Star' Muth (Good Magic) eligible for the GI Kentucky Derby. But Judge Mitchell Perry of Jefferson Circuit Court also denied CDI's request to dismiss the case in his Apr. 18 order. This means that barring a successful appeal...

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KY Judge Says He'll Rule on Derby Lawsuit by End of Week

The Kentucky judge overseeing the lawsuit initiated by Amr Zedan's incorporated racing stable against Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI) to try and get Bob Baffert-trained horses unbarred from the GI Kentucky Derby told both parties Wednesday he now has a clearer understanding of a relatively new "meritless lawsuit" law to be able to issue a written opinion by the end of the week. That opinion is unlikely to decide the Apr. 3 civil lawsuit in full, but it is expected to address Zedan's motion for an injunction that could pave the...

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Churchill Brings on SAP as an Official Signature Partner for Derby

Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI) has entered a multi-year agreement naming SAP America, Inc. (SAP), a global market leader in enterprise application software, an official signature partner of Churchill Downs Racetrack, CDI said in a release Thursday. SAP is the first official technology partner of Churchill, as well as of the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks. The agreement includes naming rights within Churchill and use of SAP technology solutions. "We are thrilled to welcome SAP as a signature partner of Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby," said Bill Mudd, President and...

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Letter To The Editor: The Implications of Choosing Not To Run in This Year's Derby

The Derby is not just any race. It is the pinnacle of American horse racing from virtually every angle: breeding, owning, training, riding and yes, even betting (who doesn't want bragging rights for picking the winner?). And the Derby race/event has grown to such importance for the entire industry (the hoopla around the Derby as an event got bigger in the preceding years even while horse racing has been struggling), that its import flows far beyond the private parameters of ownership of Churchill Downs, Inc. Derby day is an industry-wide...

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Clerk Of Scales At Presque Isle Downs Suspended For Failure To Weigh-Out Jockeys

A longtime racetrack employee and the current Clerk of Scales at Churchill Downs Inc.-owned Presque Isle Downs in Erie, Pennsylvania was suspended by the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission's Bureau of Thoroughbred Horse Racing for 30 days beginning Jan. 8. Danny Hamilton was found by the stewards to have neglected to weigh-out jockeys before the eighth race Oct. 11. Director of Enforcement Jason Klouser, who led the investigation, said, "The Racing Commission's investigators observed Danny Hamilton failing to weigh-out the jockeys for race 8, which is a violation of numerous...

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Colonial Downs Dates Approved For 2024

The 27-day live racing season at Colonial Downs for 2024 will be held over nine weeks from Thursday, July 11 through Saturday, Sept. 7 as approved by the Virginia Racing Commission, the track said in a release Wednesday. Like last season, the New Kent site will race three days per week, Thursday through Saturday. "The success of the 2023 meet, which brought weekend racing back to Colonial Downs, was a credit to the tremendous support here in Virginia from the owners, trainers, horseplayers, hard-working staff and partners," said Senior Director...

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Oaks Day 149 Sets Handle Record

Friday's GI Longines Kentucky Oaks card at Churchill Downs set a record, with all-sources handle for the day of racing reaching $74.9 million--up from last year's record $74.6 million. All-sources wagering on the Oaks specifically was $22.4 million, down from the record set 12 months ago of $24.3 million. Attendance was a reported 106,381. "Congratulations to the connections of Pretty Mischievous on today's win," said Churchill Downs President Mike Anderson. "The 149th Kentucky Oaks will be remembered as a memorable day of racing on a near-perfect Kentucky day. Today's success...

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Baffert: CDI 'Appears to Misunderstand' Its Own Derby Qualifying Rules

Responding to a legal filing in which Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI), alleged that a court-mandated lifting of Bob Baffert's ban from competing in the GI Kentucky Derby would harm the connections of other qualifying points earners who would "lose their fairly-earned berths in the Derby to make room for Baffert," the Hall-of-Fame trainer's legal team fired back with a written response on Friday claiming that CDI "appears to misunderstand its own rules," regarding the qualifying system. "CDI argues that an injunction would force it to 'reallocate' points and 'deprive' owners...

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CDI Argues Court Win By Baffert Would Harm Other Derby Qualifiers

The gaming corporation that controls the GI Kentucky Derby fired the latest legal salvo in trainer Bob Baffert's ongoing attempt to reverse the second year of a two-year ban the company imposed in 2021 because of a spate of drug positives in Grade I races, urging a federal judge not to grant an injunction that would lift the ban in time for the May 6 Derby. "Baffert refuses to accept responsibility for his wrongful actions..." Churchill Downs Inc. (CDI) wrote in a brief opposing Baffert's motion for a preliminary injunction...

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