Hawthorne Race Course

With '25 the New Target for Racinos, Optimism Accompanies '24 Illinois Race Dates

Illinois racing is still struggling to recover from the twin blows of the 2021 closure of Arlington International Racecourse and the inability of the state's two surviving Thoroughbred venues--Hawthorne Race Course and FanDuel Sportsbook & Horse Racing--to follow through with building their proposed racinos that were legalized back in 2019. Yet Thursday's Illinois Racing Board (IRB) meeting was conducted with a noticeably welcome tone of cautious optimism, as commissioners unanimously approved 2024 race dates against the backdrop of revamped racino construction schedules at both venues that could mean gaming revenue...

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Audible Filly Records First Win For Her Sire

WinStar Farm's first-crop sire and GI Florida Derby champ Audible celebrated his inaugural winner on Sunday when Dorothy Crowfoot (Audible--Enjoy This Moment by Midnight Lute) sped to victory at Hawthorne Race Course on Sunday afternoon. The bay filly debuted here as the 3-5 favorite after scratching last Sunday. The Larry Rivelli trainee broke alertly from the outside, controlled the fractions throughout and won going away by 6 1/2 lengths over Devil (Fast Anna). The winner's dam, a half-sister to MGSW Sum of the Parts (Speightstown) and GSW Rocket Heat (Latent...

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Air Quality Concerns Cause Midwest Cancellations

Dangerous air quality conditions caused by wildfires in Canada have forced the cancellation of the live racing programs at Hawthorne Race Course in suburban Chicago and at Horseshoe Indianapolis further to the south and east. "Based on the poor air quality in Indiana today's races have been canceled," a tweet from the track read. "This decision was made mutually with our horsemen based on the safety of the participants in our racing program coming first. A decision on bringing today's races back will be made shortly." Track announcer John Dooley...

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BetMakers Launches Fixed Odds Mobile App

MonmouthBets, the first legal and regulated mobile application for fixed odds betting on horse racing in the United States, has launched announced BetMakers Technology Group Friday. Approved by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement, the MonmouthBets app is now available for New Jersey residents to accept wagers on mobile devices ahead of Monmouth Park's 78th season beginning Saturday, May 13. In addition to being able to place bets on Monmouth Park races, New Jersey horseplayers can now place fixed odds wagers on races from Tampa Bay Downs, Canterbury Park,...

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The Week in Review: Handle Falls Sharply Again in February… What's Going On?

Figures released last week by Equibase showed that U.S. handle declined by 5.21% in February. This comes after handle declined by 7.19% in January. For the year, that's a drop off of 6.22% and, if those numbers hold up throughout the year, total handle will be off by $750 million and the year-over-year percentage decline will be the worst the sport has suffered since 2010. And it's not just that racing has gotten off to a slow, reversible start this year when it comes to wagering. Whatever is going on,...

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Turfway and Hawthorne Cancel Dec. 23 Racing

Turfway Park in Florence, Kentucky and Hawthorne Race Course outside Chicago have canceled their Friday night programs due to freezing temperatures, the tracks announced Wednesday. Northern Kentucky is expected to experience a wind chill as low as 25 below zero. The National Weather Service forecast for Friday in Florence calls for a 20% chance of snow showers and a high of 6 degrees. The breezy conditions could lead to wind chills ranging from 10-25 below zero. Turfway Park is scheduled to resume racing Wednesday with a first post of 5:55...

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Cautious Optimism in Illinois Racing

Illinois racing has its problems. There's no more Arlington Park, there will be only 64 days of racing this year and the circuit will shut down in the middle of the summer. But with the 2022 season about to start Saturday at Hawthorne, officials at that track are predicting that navigating through this year will be challenging but not impossible. "How are we going to do? I can tell you more Wednesday when we draw the first card," said Racing Secretary Al Plever. "But I think were going to be...

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After Blown Purse Contract Deadline, Horsemen Claim Arlington Officials Won't Meet

Barely 18 hours after a state-mandated Dec. 31 deadline elapsed for having a purse contract in place, the Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association (ITHA) lashed out at Arlington International Racecourse and its publicly traded ownership, Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI), claiming that the gaming company "deceived Illinois" and is now "threatening the future of live racing at Arlington by refusing to commit" to funding adequate purses for the 2020 meet. The ITHA's allegations were listed in a point-by-point press release sent to news organizations late on New Year's Day, and the top...

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Hawthorne Won't Race 2020 Spring Meet to Allow for Racino Construction

Hawthorne Race Course will not run a spring Thoroughbred meet in 2020 because the afternoon races will conflict with the large-scale reconstruction of the track's grandstand and clubhouse that will transform the plant into a racino. Earlier this summer, Illinois legalized slot machines, table games and sports betting at the state's commercial pari-mutuel tracks. The Blood-Horse first broke the story on Thursday, but TDN obtained additional details about the project from both Hawthorne and Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association (ITHA) officials. "The beginning of the construction is going to be in...

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Legendary Chicago Trainer Richard Hazelton Dies

Richard Hazelton, who transitioned from a successful career as a jockey to become a perennial leading trainer on the Chicago circuit, passed away Tuesday. The father of TVG personality Scott Hazelton, Richard Hazelton was 88 years old. The elder Hazelton was the leading rider at Agua Caliente Racetrack in 1945 in a colony that also included the likes of Johnny Longden, according to a video recently posted on Twitter by TVG. "He had a fake ID that was supposed to allow him ride that year at Del Mar that said...

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