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Hawthorne Race Course

Hawthorne Racecourse (8/31/06)

Contact: DAK Productions
(708) 222-4540

Hawthorne Race Course – Building For the Future

Subtle, fan-friendly renovations to be unveiled this Fall

The game remains the same, but some subtle changes have been made to the way fans will be able to watch and enjoy the races during the upcoming Fall Thoroughbred racing season at Hawthorne Race Course, which kicks off Friday, September 15.

In an effort to better utilize the facility and improve traffic flow, Hawthorne’s West side of the building has been closed. Initiatives based in the improvement of the accommodations on the East end and within the Gold Cup Room and Turf Club are ongoing, and the entire outdoor apron will remain accessible.

Both the Gold Cup and East side entrances remain open, and fans will be able to enter the building for just $3, which includes a live racing program.

Free parking on the Cicero Avenue (East) side of the building has been expanded, and the new horsemen's lot will be located closer to the Gold Cup and Horsemen's lounge entrance. The lot has also been re-striped in order to provide better flow in and out.

Each of Hawthorne’s three public floors has undergone renovation intended to benefit horseman and fans alike.

On the first floor just outside of the clubhouse elevators, an expanded Horseman’s Lounge, designed to better accommodate trainers and horse owners, has been constructed. It includes a larger seating area, 14 strategically placed televisions, direct access to the outdoor apron, and wagering machines.

“The horsemen and owners are the people that make this game go, and it was important to us to increase their level of comfort,” said Hawthorne president Tim Carey. “They now have a private area with more than ten times the amount of personal room than they had in the past.”

The first floor has seen many improvements implemented during the off season. A durable epoxy floor, providing additional comfort to the walker, has been laid and the Food Court has been modified to provide better flow for both patrons and workers. An improved and expanded food and beverage menu will also be unveiled at the start of the Fall season.

The old gift shop has been torn down and will be replaced by an open-air bar and lounge area. Up to 40 patrons can sit comfortably at the main bar, while dozens of others can enjoy the lounge atmosphere at several nearby tables. In the new area, four 52” LCD televisions have been stationed on each of the pillars, and another 10 42” sets will hang above the main bar.

In an effort to give every racing fan the working space they desire, two additional simulcast centers have been added to the East side of the first floor.

Hawthorne’s Gold Cup Room, located on the second floor, has been infused with dozens of brand new television sets. The 10 60" televisions originally stationed above the racetrack viewing windows have been replaced with 32 flat screen LCDs, 28 52" TVs and 4 62" TVs.

Additional betting windows, located closer to the fans, have also been added, and half of the Gold Cup Room has now been designated as “non-smoking.” Hawthorne’s food and beverage department promises a new and expanded daily menu and several dining room specials and themed buffet options. Just west of the Gold Cup Room, an annex staging for groups has been constructed for the comfort of those waiting to enter.

The layout on the East side of the second floor has been entirely redone. Uniquely themed concessions will be available on each end of the floor, and bar service will be made available to fans occupying the seating area. The 36” televisions in the two existing simulcast centers have been replaced by 52" sets, and a brand new area, featuring 6 60" screens and tables conveniently located close to the betting windows, has been constructed.

The entire third floor, which houses the handicapping and business center and is utilized for handicapping tournaments on many of the weekends, is now entirely non-smoking.

Other improvements include the expansion of the toteboard to include 14 numbers, allowing for more main track only and also eligible entries, and the lowering of the high-pan camera by 40 feet, giving simulcast players a much better view of the horses.

"I am confident that both the casual and experienced horseplayer will find the new Hawthorne more conducive to watching and wagering on horseracing,” Carey said. “The atmosphere will be more energetic and entertaining and our staff continues to be dedicated to making Hawthorne fan friendly."

The 2006 fall Thoroughbred meet at Hawthorne Race Course runs September 15 through December 31 with live racing five days per week: Wednesday through Sunday. Post time Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday is 1:10 p.m. Friday post time through November 24 is 3 p.m., and it will revert back to 1:10 p.m. for the remainder of the meet.

Hawthorne’s spring 2006 Standardbred meet ran May 6 through June 17.

Hawthorne’s spring 2006 Thoroughbred meet ran February 24 through May 2.

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