In an effort to make up for the six full or partial cancellations the track has endured the last two months, Turfway Park had scheduled live racing for this coming Monday – a day when the facility is normally dark.
The track announced today, however, that it had canceled the upcoming Monday card due to a lack of entires. In explaining why he believed the entry box failed to fill, track president Bob Elliston made it clear he felt it was yet another example of how a lack of alternative gaming in the state is hurting the local racing industry.
“Hindsight is 20/20 and we missed the mark in terms of the horse population that would be available to fill additional race days,” Elliston said in a statement. “Horses that otherwise would prefer to run in Kentucky, and traditionally did so, are instead racing in jurisdictions where purses are enhanced with revenue from alternative gaming. Kentucky has not been permitted to level the playing field and we are beginning to feel the effects of the competitive advantage other states have over us, tradition or not.”
The cancellation comes just days after Keeneland president Nick Nicholson stated during the monthly meeting of the Bluegrass Hospitality Association that Kentucky tracks were struggling to keep up with tracks in neighboring states that did have alternative gaming and, thus, could offer larger purses.
In addition to losing the card, Turfway was also slated to hold a commemorative poster giveaway and autograph signing by Kentucky Derby winners Chris McCarron and Mike Manganello on Monday. The event will be rescheduled.