Churchill Downs Suspends Racing; Moves to Ellis Park

Churchill Downs Suspends Racing; Moves to Ellis Park

By US Racing Team

Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby (G1), is suspending racing operations beginning Wednesday (June 7) out of “an abundance of caution” and moving the rest of its spring meet to CDI-owned Ellis Park.

The move was recommended Friday (June 2) by the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) after a review by the authority and the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) of an unusual number of injuries resulting in 12 horses being euthanized at the iconic racetrack over the past month.

Racing at Churchill Downs is scheduled to continue through the weekend before the rest of the season shifts to Ellis Park, about 135 miles west of Louisville in Hendersonville, Kentucky.

Churchill Downs, which accommodates about 1,400 horses, will remain open for training. The Churchill meet, now moving to Ellis Park, runs through July 3; the Ellis Park summer meet is scheduled for July 7-Aug. 27.

“The team at Churchill Downs takes great pride in our commitment to safety and strives to set the highest standard in racing, consistently going above and beyond the regulations and policies that are required,” CDI CEO Bill Carstanjen said in a news release. “What has happened at our track is deeply upsetting and absolutely unacceptable.”

Despite our best efforts to identify a cause for the recent horse injuries, and though no issues have been linked to our racing surfaces or environment at Churchill Downs, we need to take more time to conduct a top-to-bottom review of all of the details and circumstances so that we can further strengthen our surface, safety and integrity protocols.”

HISA was created to implement a national, uniform set of integrity and safety rules that are applied consistently to every thoroughbred racing participant and racetrack facility.

“HISA’s highest priority is the safety and well-being of equine and human athletes competing under our jurisdiction,” HISA CEO Lisa Lazarus said in a press release. “Given that we have been so far unable to draw conclusions about the cause of the recent equine fatalities at Churchill Downs, and therefore have been unable to recommend or require interventions that we felt would adequately ensure the safety of the horses running there, we made the decision to recommend to CDI that they temporarily suspend racing at Churchill Downs while additional reviews continue.”

2023 Belmont Stakes Contenders, Odds and Post Positions

PP Horse Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Tapit Shoes 3-1 Brad H. Cox Jose Ortiz
2 Tapit Trice 3-1 Todd A. Pletcher Luis Saez
3 Arcangelo 8-1 Jena M. Antonucci Javier Castellano
4 National Treasure 5-1 Bob Baffert John R. Velazquez
5 Il Miracolo 30-1 Antonio Sano Marcos Meneses
6 Forte 5-2 Todd A. Pletcher Irad Ortiz, Jr.
7 Hit Show 10-1 Brad H. Cox Manuel Franco
8 Angel of Empire 7-2 Brad H. Cox Flavien Prat
9 Red Route One 15-1 Steve M. Asmussen Joel Rosario
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