The Red Mile has submitted plans to the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) for a $25-million project to renovate the current grandstand and build a 50,000-square-foot facility to house 500 Instant Racing machines, which allow bettors to wager on the outcome of random historical races.
The Red Mile and Keeneland Thoroughbred track filed separate applications, both of which are on the agenda of the April 2 meeting of the KHRC. The Red Mile application states it hopes to open its Instant Racing parlor by July 2015. The Instant Racing parlor would be open from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 6 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
The Thoroughbred tracks Ellis Park and Kentucky Downs both currently operate Instant Racing parlors, which was approved by the KHRC in 2010. Those sites opened despite The Family Foundation filing a lawsuit challenging the legality of the games, which is still working its way through the court system.
According to a story posted Tuesday on www.kentucky.com, the website of the Lexington Herald Leader, The Red Mile is in "earnest negotiations" with the Kentucky Harness Horsemen's Association on revenue percentages. Also noted was the fact that The Red Mile only conducts Standardbred race meets and only offers simulcasting on harness racing and Quarter Horse racing, but that the Instant Racing machines only show historical Thoroughbred races. "Time is of the essence due to the precarious nature of the Standardbred industry," the application in noting historical harness races were not included in Instant Racing's current format.
The application also stated, "The new revenue anticipated to be brought in from historical horse racing will prevent The Red Mile from going out of business and will enable The Red Mille to continue to support the viability of the Standardbred industry."