Churchill Downs announced Wednesday a reduction in purses that will affect four races scheduled during the final eight days of the Fall Meet, including the Grade II Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes and Grade II Golden Rod on closing day November 30.
A purse reduction of $25,000 each for the Kentucky Jockey Club and Golden Rod will go into effect meaning the two races will now carry a purse of $150,000-added, respectively. Both races are co-featured events on the second of the Fall Meet’s popular “Stars of Tomorrow” programs devoted to racing among 2-year-olds.
Rather than reduce purses for all overnight races offered during the remaining days of the meet, Churchill Downs officials have opted to eliminate one race each on two of the remaining racing days. The races will be dropped from the programs scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 24, and Wednesday, Nov. 27. Each of those racing cards will now consist of nine races.
In a release, Churchill cited expanded competition from other tracks within the market that have purses enhanced by expanded gaming revenue saying “as regional casino competition has grown and matured, Churchill Downs’ competitive challenges expanded to include racetracks in its border states and throughout North America that benefit from race purses bolstered by gaming revenues. Those tracks and their enhanced purses have lured horses and stables from Churchill Downs and Kentucky racing, resulting in declines in the track’s purses and average horses-per-race.”