This is a place for friendly and civil discussion of horse racing of all types including handicapping.
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Pimlico is not a viable business option. The only people who are fighting to keep Pimlico Racetrack going are Baltimore politicians but the track is privately owned and the owners are not willing to throw good money at a failing business location. The owners of Pimlico also owns Laurel Park and have spent millions of dollars to repair Laurel and make it into a state of the art facility.
Laurel is a huge facility with plenty of parking and a big racetrack. It is 25 minutes away from Pimlico down I-95 and is only 30 minutes south of metropolitan Washington D.C. The city of Laurel and its surrounding areas can easily deal with any crowd the Preakness might bring. I respect Pimlico's history but it makes perfect sense to move the Preakness to Laurel.
I thought Laurel could handle only about 30,000 or so fans?
At any rate, didn’t the Maryland legislature allocate money to upgrade Pimlico? Iirc Stronach was to deed it to Baltimore or Maryland in exchange and he gets to run the meet. Have they been working on any improvements or is it just too far gone? If so raze it and build a new grandstand.
Yes, fixed seating at Laurel might be 30.000 but there is plenty of open spaces on the grounds and the infield to accommodate thousands of seats. Proponents of Pimlico came up with several proposals to preserve the track but even if they rebuild the people are not going to come. The neighborhood next door to Pimlico is crime infested and the track is surrounded by abandon houses and buildings. So, it is not just Pimlico. They would have to redevelop the whole neighborhood. Go to Pimlico, there is a good chance your car is going to be broken into. Not to mention, the Horseshoe Casino in downtown Baltimore operated by Caesar Palace offers simulcast racing all over the country along with all the other casino gambling.
The Horseshoe Casino in downtown Baltimore and the MGM Grand Casino across the Potomac River from Washington DC and Northern Virginia are two of five casinos in the state of Maryland. Over 5% of all casino revenues goes to the Maryland Jockey Club to cover purse monies, Maryland breeders and horseman, which is about $75 to $80 million per year.
Pimlico is a dive and has been for 10 tens of years. I'd rather they keep derby at CD and move the other two legs around. Might make it more interesting with at least 3 weeks between. Still might showcase the monster (non drugged) horse if that is even possible today.
Pimlico is an embarrassment at this point as a proper place to hold the 2nd leg of our Triple Crown.
Best get on with it, raze it and move elsewhere.
Business is business but you'd think TPTB would have some semblence of respect for the 2nd leg of our TC, but I guess not.
They should rotate it around to major tracks until Maryland decides they want it.
Oldbettowin said...They should rotate it around to major tracks until Maryland decides they want it.
Good idea! Many tracks are deserving of a big stakes race and could use the attention, tourist dollars, 1 day boost to their local economy, and wagers.