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Horse racing fans can see 30 weekends of live racing next year at Detroit-area tracks

Michigan Gaming Control Board issues 2016 race meeting orders

Detroit – Michigan horse racing fans can see 30 weekends of live racing from mid-March through early October 2016 under race meeting orders issued today by the Michigan Gaming Control Board.        

Northville Downs was granted 60 days of live standardbred race dates on Fridays and Saturdays next year from March 18 through Oct. 8.  Hazel Park Raceway was granted 30 days of live thoroughbred and mixed breed race dates on Fridays and Saturdays from May 27 through Sept. 3, 2016.

“Hazel Park’s and Northville Downs’ management teams believe interest in live racing will grow if both tracks race at the same time, and the MGCB supports their request in today’s orders,” said Richard Kalm, MGCB executive director.

Since live racing will occur concurrently from late May to early September, the MGCB must hire and train additional staff in the coming months, he said.

For fiscal year 2016, the legislative appropriation was reduced by $670,000 for live horse racing, simulcasting and pari-mutuel wagering regulation. The MGCB has informed the race meeting licensees and certified horsemen’s associations that current funding levels may be insufficient to regulate the allocated 2016 live racing dates. The funding issues may compel the MGCB to re-examine the allocated race dates for both Hazel Park Raceway and Northville Downs next year.

“We will have a better idea of our total costs early next year,” Kalm said.  “I am confident we can work with the Legislature, track licensees and horsemen’s associations to accomplish the intent of today’s orders.”

"The Michigan Gaming Control Board shall ensure the conduct of fair and honest gaming to protect the interests of the citizens of the State of Michigan."