|CDI news release
Contact: Julie Koenig Loignon, (502) 636-4502 (office)
CHURCHILL DOWNS INCORPORATED RACETRACKS RETURN TO NORMAL WAGERING CUT-OFF TIME FOR 2003 RACE MEETS
On-track and Simulcast Wagering to Close When Starting Gate Opens
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (April 15, 2003) -- Racetracks operated by Churchill Downs Incorporated ("CDI") (Nasdaq: CHDN) will return to the normal wagering cut-off time and accept pari-mutuel wagers until the official start (when the starting gate opens) of both on-track and simulcast horse races. The announcement was made today by John R. Long, CDI's executive vice president and chief operating officer.
A return to the normal wagering cut-off time comes as CDI racetracks prepare for the openings of their respective 2003 Thoroughbred race meets. In November 2002, CDI instituted a policy to close wagering on CDI races at zero ("0") minutes to post, or approximately 90 seconds before horses were loaded into the starting gate. This policy was implemented at three of the CDI tracks offering fall racing -- Calder Race Course in Miami, Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., and Hoosier Park in Anderson, Ind. -- and was designed to address concerns about late-changing odds, which arose as a result of the Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick 6 investigation. California racing officials would not allow Hollywood Park, CDI's Los Angeles-area racetrack, to implement the early wagering cut-off.
"CDI implemented interim wagering security measures last fall to maintain customer confidence as the entire horseracing industry addressed concerns about totalisator systems security," said Long. "Since that time, the tote vendors that process our pari-mutuel wagers have made positive improvements to their security systems and have been able to reduce the amount of time required to transmit wagering data from simulcast sites to racetrack tote hubs. Given these improvements, we believe the time is right to return to our normal wagering policies and allow our customers additional time to make their selections."
Hoosier Park, which is currently conducting its 50-day Standardbred Meet, is accepting pari-mutuel wagers until the official start of each live harness race. Opening dates for CDI's Thoroughbred racetracks are as follows:
Churchill Downs Incorporated ("CDI"), headquartered in Louisville, Ky., owns and operates world-renowned horseracing venues throughout the United States. The Company's racetracks in California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky host 115 graded-stakes events and many of North America's most prestigious races, including the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks, Hollywood Gold Cup and Arlington Million. CDI racetracks have hosted nine Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships -- more than any other North American racing company. CDI also owns off-track betting facilities and has interests in various television production, telecommunications and racing services companies that support CDI's network of simulcasting and racing operations. CDI trades on the Nasdaq National Market under the symbol CHDN and can be found on the Internet at www.churchilldownsincorporated.com.
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