LOUISVILE, Ky. - Churchill Downs is growing once again. Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) announced it has reached an agreement to buy Turfway Park in Florence, Kentucky from Jack Ohio, LLC and Hard Rock International for $46 million.
The closing of the agreement is subject to approval by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC). A meeting is scheduled for October 8 and if the change of control is approved, the deal is expected to close soon after.
If approved by the KHRC, the 2019-2020 winter racing meet at Turfway Park will take place on dates previously awarded to Turfway Park. Upon approval of the change of control, CDI will not pursue its previously announced New Latonia Racing and Gaming project in northern Kentucky and will withdraw its New Latonia race dates.
As soon as the closing takes place, CDI plans to demolish the existing grandstand at Turfway following the winter meet, clearing the way for a new state-of-the-art New Turfway Park, which could cost as much as $100 million.
“We are thrilled to welcome Turfway Park to the Churchill Downs racing family,” said Kevin Flanery, President of Churchill Downs Race Track. “Our team is poised to restore Turfway to its former glory, anchored by northern Kentucky’s first historical racing machine facility. The result will be a first-class racing product fueled by increased purses that keeps high-quality horses in Kentucky year-round and appeals to horseplayers nationwide.”
New Turfway Park is expected to employ 400 full and part-time positions and create an estimated 800 construction jobs. New Turfway Park will include 1,500 machines, a new clubhouse, food/beverage venues, and a new inner dirt track to complement the existing one-mile synthetic main track.