Colonial Downs Update

At a May 30 meeting with Secretary of Commerce Maurice Jones, the VHBPA, Colonial Downs and the Virginia Racing Commission discussed the possibility of a Colonial summer ship-in meet beginning July 4th and ending on Labor Day for a total of 22 race days. Races would run on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. No agreement was reached at the meeting because Colonial representatives needed to consult with track owner Jeff Jacobs.

In a follow-up call on Friday, Racing Commission representatives spoke with Jeff Jacobs, Ian Stewart, and Jim Weinberg. From what the VTA has been told, there was no meaningful progress toward a settlement, with Colonial once again discussing the possibility of surrendering its license if the Commission seeks to enforce its original award of 5 weeks/25 days. There will likely be an open Commission meeting either Thursday or the following Monday to address the situation.

VHBPA Executive Director Frank Petramalo has  been exploring the possibility of holding a summer meet at Laurel in the event no agreemention can be reached. If that is not feasible, the five Virginia-bred stakes races may also be run at the Laurel fall meet, which begins September 5th. The VTA and VHBPA are also exploring paying Virginia-bred owners’ bonuses at Laurel, Charles Town, and Delaware.

We will keep you updated as things evolve on vabred.org.