Churchill Downs and Keeneland partner to build two new racing facilities

John Asher talks about the plan to build two new horse racing facilities in Kentucky that could lead to hundreds of new jobs.

LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- Churchill Downs and Keeneland have announced their partnership to construct two new racing facilities in Corbin and Oak Grove, Kentucky. The new state-of-the-art facilities will feature live horse racing and historical racing machines.

"Horse racing is a $4 billion industry in the Commonwealth that creates thousands of jobs, strengthens our statewide economy, and attracts millions of visitors from around the globe," said CDI Chief Executive Office Bill Castanjen. 

Churchill Downs and Keeneland plan to work closely with Tourism, Arts, and Heritage Cabinets on infrastructure improvements in Corbin and Oak Grove. 

“Corbin is thrilled to be a part of this historic venture between two of the horse racing industry’s most iconic names,” Corbin Mayor Willard McBurney said. “The new racing facility will be a welcome addition to our city’s already long list of sites and attractions for local residents and visitors.”

Each facility is contingent upon an initial pari-mutuel racing license by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. These applications will be filed today. 

“Churchill Downs and Keeneland have the support of the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association as they move forward with their plans to bring two new racing facilities to our state,” Kentucky Thoroughbred Association Executive Director Chauncey Morris said. “The proposed facilities will benefit our industry and the Commonwealth as a whole through new jobs, greater revenues and more tourism.”

Churchill Downs and Keeneland hope that these new facilities will bring more visitors to the state and help to increase funds for horse breeders' incentives. “Not only will these racing facilities strengthen Kentucky’s vital horse industry, but just as importantly, they will positively impact the Commonwealth and the local communities by stimulating significant economic growth, generating hundreds of new jobs and enhancing tourism and hospitality," Keeneland President and Chief Executive Officer Bill Thomason said. 

Initial renderings show a barn-like building for Corbin Run and a more modern building for Oak Grove. No expected dates have been released for starting construction or completion of this project.

© 2017 WHAS-TV


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