Gulfstream Officially Takes Over Racing At Calder, Will Operate 40 Days Of Live Events
Churchill Downs Inc. on Tuesday announced that it has "received the requisite regulatory approval to transfer control" of Calder Casino & Race Course operations to The Stronach Group, the parent company of Gulfstream Park, according to Tim Dwyer of the South Florida SUN-SENTINEL. The deal marks the "end of 43 years of independent racing operations" at Calder. The Stronach Group will "operate 40 days of live racing at Calder beginning in October under a lease agreement." As a condition of the lease, The Stronach Group will "maintain the track along with 430 stalls on Calder's grounds." The agreement lasts through '20, and live thoroughbred racing will "be conducted exclusively at Gulfstream beginning Friday through Oct. 4." Starting next week, Gulfstream will "feature a Thursday through Sunday racing schedule with Labor Day substituting for Thursday of that week." Beginning Oct. 8, Calder will "host live racing five days a week for eight weeks so as to meet the state mandated minimum requirement of live dates in order for Churchill Downs Inc. to operate a casino license" (South Florida SUN-SENTINEL, 7/3). BLOODHORSE's Jim Freer noted changes at Calder "have already begun." Track management on Tuesday announced that it has "canceled live racing for July 4 and would discontinue simulcast operations in its grandstand and casino buildings at the close of business July 1" (BLOODHORSE.com, 7/2).