Bossier City, LA – David Heitzmann, who has been the racing secretary at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs since March, 2010, has been promoted to Director of Racing/Racing Secretary, pending all regulatory approvals.
Mike Rich, Senior Vice President and General Manager at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs made the announcement about Heitzmann and the departure of Trent McIntosh, who has taken on the new role as General Manager of Hoosier Park in Indianapolis, Indiana for Caesars Entertainment.
Heitzmann has been affiliated with many racetracks across the country including Keeneland, Arlington Park, Fairgrounds and Churchill Downs, prior to his tenure at Louisiana Downs. Racing runs in the Heitzmann family as his father, Roger Heitzmann, Jr. was a trainer and he has three brothers involved in the racing industry. Roger, III, is the Secretary/Treasurer of the Louisiana Thoroughbred Association (LTBA); Mike serves as General Manager of Stone Bridge Farm in Kentucky and Eric, is a trainer who currently has 25 horses at Canterbury Park.
“David has a wealth of racing knowledge as he has worked in the industry for 31 years,” said Rich.
Born in Covington, Kentucky, Heitzmann grew up in Metairie, Louisiana, and is committed to supporting the horsemen who have shown loyalty to Harrah’s Louisiana Downs. While he does not predict any major changes this meet, he is clear on his goals.
“Our main focus is in our local horsemen,” stated Heitzmann. “We want to help them as much as possible as they support our daily racing programs. We are working on keeping the field size up and working with TVG in getting our signal out to horseplayers.”
Louisiana horseman Joe O. Duhon is the current co-leader in the Harrah’s Louisiana Downs trainer standings and has a long association with Heitzmann.
“David’s doing a super job,” said Duhon. “He’s a horseman; comes from a family of horsemen and I know he will do his best to look out for us.”
Camel and Ostrich Racing Set for July 4
Harrah’s Louisiana Downs is hosting Exotic Animal Races on Wednesday, July 4th. Fans of all ages will enjoy Ostriches and Camels racing on the main track in between live Thoroughbred races. Post time is 3:15 pm and activities for families on the Kid’s Zone apron will get underway at noon. The popular Food Trucks will make a return appearance and The Harrah’s Club is offering an All you can eat, All day Buffet for $29.99.
Trainer, Jockey and Owner Standings
As of July 2, Joe O. Duhon and Al Stall, Jr. are tied for the lead in the trainer standings with 11 wins each. Karl Broberg, Danny Pish and Henry E. Uriegas have each saddled ten winners to share second place. Eric Nelson, Jr. and Jorge Lara follow closely with eight wins each.
Several jockeys are riding very well this meet and a tight battle for leading rider is underway. Emanuel Nieves is the current leader in the standings with 31 wins. Joel Dominguez took command of the June 23rd card, winning six of the seven races. He has won 30 races to date. Gerardo Mora, who was the leading rider last year at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs, is third with 28 winners. He won five races on the June 27th card, sending the message that a repeat of his title is certainly on his mind. Richard Eramia, who has locked up leading rider honors already at Lone Star Park, has 25 wins to his credit at Louisiana Downs. He will be a threat once Lone Star concludes on July 15.
End Zone Athletics, Inc. and Dream Walkin Farms, Inc. top the owner standings with eight wins each. Jorge Gomez is second with six wins, one more than Patti Turner. P and D Racing Stables and Indian Creek Thoroughbred Farms LLC follow with four wins each.
Post Times and Stakes Schedule
Live racing will be conducted Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and Saturday with a 3:15 p.m. (Central) post time through September 27.
The 84-day meet will include 14 stakes highlighted by two major events, Louisiana Cup Day on Saturday, August 4 and Super Derby Day on Sunday, September 2. As previously announced one major change for the upcoming season is that the Grade 3, $300,000 Super Derby will return to the main track at a distance of a mile and one-sixteenth on Sunday, September 2.
About Harrah’s Louisiana Downs
Located near Shreveport in Bossier City, Louisiana, Louisiana Downs opened in 1974 and was purchased by Caesars Entertainment in December, 2002. With annual Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing seasons, the track is committed to presenting the highest quality racing programs paired with its 150,000 square foot entertainment complex offering casino gambling, dining and plasma screen televisions for sports and simulcast racing.