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LOUISIANA LEGENDS NIGHT EXCITEMENT THRILLS FANS AT EVANGELINE DOWNS

CILLA BECOMES FIRST BLACK-TYPE WINNER FOR CALIFORNIA CHROME

 

OPELOUSAS, LA –Evangeline Downs hosted the annual celebration of the Louisiana-bred Thoroughbreds with Louisiana Legends Night on Saturday.  The exciting card featured six stakes races, each with a purse of $70,000 highlighted the card.

 

Persistent rains throughout the week forced all the races to be run on the main track.  The Soiree was contested over a muddy track, but a downpour after that race left the card sloppy for the remaining races.

 

Cilla wins Louisiana Legends Mademoiselle. Coady Photography

The $70,000 Mademoiselle featured what may have been the most impressive performance of the evening as Cilla powered away to victory.  The 3-year-old Brett Brinkman trainee scratched out of the one-mile Soiree to face older fillies and mares in the Mademoiselle.  That decision proved fruitful with the sensational turn of foot produced on the far turn.  Traveling in mid-pack as Strong Beauty and Southern Beauty battled through fractions of 21.64 and 45.05, jockey Joel Dominguez sent Cilla up to challenge with a four-wide move at the top of the lane.  While racing six wide, Cilla stormed away from her rivals to win by 4-1/4 lengths, stopping the timer in 1:03.74.   Evangeline Downs Distaff winner Snowball rallied up the rail to finish second and Strong Beauty held on well for third.

 

Campaigned by P. Dale Ladner, and was bred by the partnership of Brinkman and Ladner.  Sired by California Chrome, she is out of the Into Mischief mare Sittin at the Bar.  The Mademoiselle victory was the second impressive win over a sloppy track, along with a win at Delaware Park last August.

 

Cilla returned $19.60 as the winner, $6.20 to place and $4.20 to show.  Snowball paid $4.20 to place and $2.60 to show.  Strong Beauty paid $4.40 to show.  With the $42,000 winner’s prize, Cilla pushed her career earnings to $143,500.

 

Winning Romance. Coady Photography.

The $70,000 Soiree, for 3-year-old fillies, was contested by a field of just four runners over the one-mile distance.  Winning Romance, trained by W. Bret Calhoun, broke alertly and traveled comfortably in tandem with Half Koo Koo for the first half-mile.  Jockey Diego Saenz asked his runner for more on the far turn, and she quickly responded.  Winning Romance’s lead widened throughout the lane with the winning margin an incredible 20-3/4 lengths.  Inawic, who tracked the leaders down the backside, finished second and Tecate Time was along for third.  The final time was a hand-timed 1:38.75.

 

Winning Romance, sired by First Samurai, and out of the Flatter mare Lipstick Junky, returned $2.60 to win and $2.10 to place.  Inawic returned $4.00 to place.  There was no show wagering in the short field.  The Allied Racing Stables, LLC (Chester Thomas) runner pushed her career earnings to $135,441.

 

Chu Chu’s Legacy. Coady Photography.

The $70,000 Cheval was contested in a torrential rainstorm that arrived shortly before post-time.  Chu Chu’s Legacy was quickly away in the one-mile affair, and was never headed, scoring a front-running six-length victory.  The winner owned and trained by Allen Landry is a son of Bind, out of the Johannesburg mare Bond’s Babe.  Jockey Joe Stokes urged his runner along in splits of 23.59, 47.41 and 1:12.36, before stopping the timer in 1:39.18 for the eight furlongs.

 

Runner-up Wise Verdict made a move inside of rivals on the turn to get in position turning for home, while third-place finisher Beauregard was well placed throughout, but unable to threaten the leader.

 

The winner returned $10.60 to win, $6.40 to place and $4.80 to show.  Wise Verdict rewarded backers with $9.60 to place and $6.00 to show.  Longshot Beauregard paid $13.80 to show.  Chu Chu’s Legacy ran his total earnings to $176,350 with the triumph.

 

Bertie’s Galaxy. Coady Photography

The $70,000 Sprint, over a distance of 5-1/2 furlongs, was a family affair as half-siblings Bertie’s Galaxy and Wild Bert battled from the start and finished one-two.  Both runners are out of the Wild Rush dam, Wild Bertie, with the winner being the younger brother and sired by Greeley’s Galaxy.

 

Wild Bert sped through early fractions of 21.86 and 45.04, with Bertie’s Galaxy in close attendance to the outside of the leader.  Moving to challenge on the far turn, jockey Diego Saenz swept up with the Ron Faucheux runner to take the lead approaching the quarter pole.  The pair steadily drew away through the lane to win by 3-1/4 lengths in a time of 1:03.53.  Wild Bertie was well clear as the runner-up, with Laughingsaintssong another 3-1/2 lengths back in third.

Bertie’s Galaxy’s pushed his career earnings to $225,750.  Owned by Allen Cassedy and trained by Ron Faucheux, Bertie’s Galaxy was sent off as the second choice at 2-1 and paid $6.00 to win, $3.60 to place and $2.80 to show. Wild Bert returned $7.20 to place and $4.60 to show.  Laughingsaintssong returned $5.00 to show.

 

 

Offspring. Coady Photography.

The $70,000 Turf Distaff was the second straight stakes victory for Offspring.  The 5-year-old mare by Into Mischief, out of the Pioneering mare Pioneer Gal, had previously won a stakes at the Fair Grounds.  Away in good order under jockey Roberto Morales, Offspring was allowed to settle off the moderate fractions being set by Distractor Factor, traveling just off the leader through splits of 25.06 and 49.68.  Saber Cut was up to put pressure on Distractor Factor as Offspring moved alongside, while Quikfast N Ahurry ranged up four-wide past 6-furlongs in 1:14.55.  As they straightened away, Offspring surged between rivals to poke her head in front at the top of the lane and fought off her rivals for a 1-3/4 length victory in 1:39.57.  Quikfast N Ahurry battled on for second, 1-1/4 lengths in front of favored Net a Bear in third.

 

Owned by Oak Tree Stable (Bennett E. Powel) and trained by Edward J. Johnston, Offspring rewarded backers with a win price of $7.80, $4.80 to place and $2.60 to show.  Quikfast N Ahurry paid $5.60 to place and $3.20 to show, with Net a Bear at $2.40 to show.  The career bankroll increased to $219,478 with the winning share of the purse.

 

Maga Man. Coady Photography.

The $70,000 Turf was the final stakes race of the night and was won in wire-to-wire fashion by Maga Man.  A quick start from the inside post allowed Maga Man, with jockey Kevin Smith, to set reasonable fractions of 48.17 for a half-mile and 1:12.74 for the six-furlong split.  With Grand Luwegee in close attendance throughout, Maga Man repelled that challenge at the top of the lane and held sway in the final yards to hold off a late rally up the rail from Jax Man in a time of 1:38.36.  The rider of Jax Man, Casey Fusilier, lodged an objection and the stewards also posted the inquiry sign regarding the final yards of the one-mile race.  After reviewing the videotapes, the stewards found there was insufficient evidence to change the order of finish.

 

The 6-year-old son of Musket Man, and out of the Pulling Punches mare Lew’s Gray, runs for the Whispering Oaks Farm, LLC of Carrol Castille.  Trained by Steven B. Flint, the winner returned $11.80 to win, $5.20 to place and $3.20 to show.  Runner-up Jax Man paid $6.20 to place and $2.80 to show.  Grand Luwegee paid $3.20 to show.  With the victory, Maga Man increased his career bankroll to $233,960.

 

For more information on racing at Evangeline Downs, visit the track’s website atwww.evdracing.com and on Twitter @evdracing.  Racing continues on a Wednesday thru Saturday schedule until the end of the meet on September 18.

 

Evangeline Downs Racetrack Casino and Hotel, a property of Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE:BYD), features exciting casino action, live horse racing and fun dining experiences. Evangeline Downs is located in Opelousas, Louisiana, off I-49 on Cresswell Lane at Exit 18.

 

DELTA DOWNS READIES FOR 2021 EDITION OF LOUISIANA PREMIER DAY ON FEBRUARY 10

Don Stevens
DeltaDowns

–  $125,000 CHAMPIONSHIP HIGHLIGHTS LUCRATIVE CARD FOR LOUISIANA-BREDS –

 

 

VINTON, LA. – Delta Downs will host its richest race program of the season on Wednesday, February 10, when the track will award $805,000 in total purse throughout 10 stakes races. The event is called Louisiana Premier Day, and for the first time in its 18-year existence it will take place during the daytime hours with first post time set for 12:55 pm.

 

The featured race on the card will be the $125,000 Louisiana Premier Day Championship for older horses competing at 1-1/16 miles, which will be the ninth race on the program. This year’s Championship attracted a field of nine talented runners including last year’s winner Underpressure, from the barn of trainer Chris Richard. Underpressure, a 7-year-old gelding, is also the top earner in the field with a bankroll of $763,182 from 39 lifetime starts for owner Mallory Richard. Journeyman jockey Gerard Melancon will pilot Underpressure in the big race.

 

The Championship field also includes Israel Flores Horses, LLC’s Pound for Pound and Gerard Perron’s Grand Luwegee. Pound for Pound beat Underpressure by a nose in their most recent showdown, an allowance event at Fair Grounds on January 14. Grand Luwegee won the Championship back in 2019 and scored a big win in the Louisiana Champions Day Classic at Fair Grounds in December of this year.

 

Fans will also be in for a treat when the $100,000 Louisiana Premier Day Sprint rolls around in the sixth race as grade I winner No Parole makes his second appearance at Delta Downs for owner Maggi Moss and trainer Tom Amoss. The 4-year-old star won last year’s Louisiana Premier Day Prince before going on to take the Woody Stephens Stakes (G1) at Belmont Park this past June. Diego Saenz will be at the helm when No Parole goes to the starting gate on Wednesday afternoon.

 

Another race that will get plenty of attention on the program will be the $100,000 Louisiana Premier Day Starlet featuring Brett Brinkman and P. Dale Ladner’s Cilla. The 3-year-old daughter of California Chrome most recently finished third in the Grade I Frizette Stakes at Belmont Park. Brinkman trains Cilla and Gerard Melancon will get the mount aboard the likely favorite.

 

In addition to the many local horsemen taking part in Louisiana Premier Day there are also some nationally prominent trainers who will saddle horses on the program. They include Hall of Famer Steve Asmussen, as well as W. Bret Calhoun, Tom Amoss and others.

 

Delta Downs will offer the DRF Bets $50,000 Guaranteed All Stakes Pick 4 wager on the Louisiana Premier Day program. The special wager will take place on race 7 – 10, which includes the afternoon’s richest race, the $125,000 Louisiana Premier Day Championship serving as the penultimate leg.

 

Delta Downs will also welcome a special guest to its simulcast program during Louisiana Premier Day.  Nationally known horse racing analyst and commentator Martha Claussen will join track announcer Don Stevens on the simulcast show as a co-host, handicapper and trackside reporter following the major stakes races.

 

Listed below are all 10 Louisiana Premier Day stakes races for 2021 in program order.

 

Race #             Purse              Stakes Race                                        Distance                      Age

1                      $40,000           LAPD Bon Temps Starter                   5 furlongs                    4yo & up FM

2                      $50,000           LAPD Ladies Starter                           1 mile                          4yo & up FM

3                      $100,000         LAPD Starlet                                       1 mile                          3yo fillies

4                      $40,000           LAPD Ragin Cajun Starter                 5 furlongs                    4yo & up

5                      $100,000         LAPD Prince                                       1 mile                          3yo

6                      $100,000         LAPD Sprint                                       5 furlongs                    4yo & up

7                      $100,000         LAPD Distaff                                      1 mile                          4yo & up FM

8                      $100,000         LAPD Matron                                     5 furlongs                    4yo & up FM

9                      $125,000         LAPD Championship                          1-1/16 miles                4yo & up

10                    $50,000           LAPD Gentlemen Starter                    1-1/16 miles                4yo & up

 

The Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association will be awarding two (2) $1,000 college scholarships via a drawing that will take place on Louisiana Premier Day.

 

Entries for the LTBA drawing will be taken online only this year at www.louisianabred.com. The deadline to enter is noon on Tuesday, February 9. Winners will be announced after the fifth race at the track and the drawing will be shown live on the Louisiana Thoroughbred Association Facebook page. To qualify for the drawing, entrants must be enrolled full time for spring or summer 2021 classes and in good standing with their Louisiana college or university.

 

For more information about Louisiana Premier Day and the remainder of Delta Downs’ current season, which runs through April 16, visit the track’s website at www.deltadownsracing.com. Fans can also follow the track on Facebook and Twitter.

 

Delta Downs Racetrack Casino and Hotel, a property of Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE:BYD), features exciting casino action, live horse racing and fun dining experiences. Delta Downs is located in Vinton, Louisiana, on Delta Downs Drive. From Lake Charles, take Exit 7 and from Texas, take Exit 4.

 

 

DELTA DOWNS WORKS TOWARD REVISED SCHEDULE FOR 2020-21 THOROUGHBRED SEASON

REPAIRS TO RACETRACK UNDERWAY AFTER HURRICANE LAURA

September 28, 2020

VINTON, LA – Delta Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel today announced that it is working toward a revised start date for its 2020-21 Thoroughbred season, following delays caused by heavy damage to the track from Hurricane Laura on August 27.

Based on the progress of repairs to date, Delta Downs believes it will be able to allow horses to move back on the grounds and start training by late October and begin live racing in late November.

This year’s meet was originally scheduled to run from October 6, 2020 to February 27, 2021 for a total of 84 race days. The end of the season may now be revised and extended along with a change in the total number of race days, pending approval from the Louisiana Racing Commission

Steve Kuypers, Vice President & General Manager of Delta Downs, said: “Boyd Gaming and Delta Downs are committed to hosting a successful 2020-21 Thoroughbred meet here in Vinton, Louisiana.”

As work continues and repairs are completed, Delta Downs will provide further information about when horses will be allowed to be stabled on the backside, when the track plans to begin its season, and the new schedule for live racing. This information will be posted to the Delta Downs website at www.deltadownsracing.com.

Delta Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel, a property of Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE:BYD), features exciting casino action, live horse racing and fun dining experiences. Delta Downs is located in Vinton, Louisiana on Delta Downs Drive. From Lake Charles, take Exit 7 and from Texas, take Exit 4.

Delta Downs Looks to Open Delayed Meet in Late November

Stabling and tracking could begin by late October.

Delta Downs, which postponed its race meet when damaged by Hurricane Laura, could begin racing in late November, according to a company spokesman. Delta had been scheduled for its regular Thoroughbred season for 84 days from Oct. 6-Feb. 27.

Track officials are hoping to open its backstretch for training by late October, said David Strow, the vice president of corporate communications for Boyd Gaming, the track owner.

Hurricane Laura, a Category 4 storm, brought devastating winds causing damage or destruction to barns, the backside dining room, the track toteboard, its data/computer room, and its safety rail and starting gate, Strow said.

“The damage was fairly extensive. The good news is we are making great progress in our repairs, and we’re confident we can have the horses return in late October,” he said.

Boyd is working with the Louisiana State Racing Commission to extend the meet beyond its originally planned ending, though specific dates and the length of the season are still to be determined, according to Strow.

Delta Downs reopened its casino Sept. 16.

For more, Read BloodHorse Article

Delta Downs Suffers Serious Damage in Hurricane, Opening to be Postponed

By Bill Finley

While no horses or people suffered major injuries as a result of Hurricane Laura, the storm produced serious damage to Delta Downs in Vinton, Louisiana, leaving the facility in such bad shape that its director of racing operations Chris Warren said there was no chance the track would be able to begin its Thoroughbred meet on time.

“This meet is supposed to start Oct. 6. That isn’t going to happen,” Warren said. “There’s no way. When it will happen, I have no idea.”

“There’s debris and sheet metal everywhere,” he said. “The tote board got demolished. It collapsed and is completely gone. Our camera towers are gone, so is our holding barn. The starting gates got completely turned over and the light poles are torn up. The whole backside rail is pretty much ruined. There’s just a lot of damage and it is everywhere.”

Read TDN Article

Boyd Gaming Commences Property Reopening Process

Properties in Louisiana, Mississippi to Resume Operations This Week

LAS VEGAS, May 18, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE: BYD) today announced plans to resume operations at seven properties in Louisiana and Mississippi, pending receipt of final regulatory approvals.

On Wednesday, May 20, Boyd Gaming plans to reopen three Louisiana properties: Delta Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel, Evangeline Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel and Treasure Chest Casino.  On Thursday, May 21, the Company will reopen its two Mississippi properties: IP Casino Resort Spa in Biloxi and Sam’s Town Hotel & Gambling Hall in Tunica.

The following week, Boyd Gaming plans to resume operations at two additional properties in Louisiana: Amelia Belle Casino and Sam’s Town Shreveport.

These will be the first Boyd Gaming properties to reopen following the closure of all Company properties nationwide in mid-March, following state mandates aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19.  Upon reopening, the properties will operate with limited amenities and capacity restrictions in compliance with state and local requirements.

“As we begin the process of reopening our properties nationwide, the health and safety of our customers, our team members and our communities will be our highest priority,” said Keith Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Boyd Gaming.  “Across the country, we are implementing comprehensive safety protocols approved by local, state and federal health officials. We are optimistic that we will be able to reopen most of our properties over the next several weeks, and we look forward to offering our guests a safe and enjoyable entertainment experience.”

Upon reopening, all Boyd Gaming properties will practice “Boyd Clean,” a set of comprehensive protocols aimed at protecting the health and safety of our team members and guests.  These protocols include:

  • Mandatory face coverings and temperature checks for all team members;
  • Social distancing requirements and capacity restrictions across all customer and team member areas, including casino floors and restaurants;
  • Enhanced cleaning and sanitation of all high-touch surfaces, including door handles, gaming machines, table games, handrails and elevator buttons;
  • Increased placement of hand sanitizer dispensers throughout our properties;
  • Required training for all team members on our safety protocols.

For additional information on the Boyd Clean initiative, visit www.boydgaming.com.

Boyd Gaming Applies for Evangeline Downs Race Dates

Company requested 50 dates for delayed Thoroughbred meet.

Fifty dates for Thoroughbred racing at Evangeline Downs have been requested by track owner Boyd Gaming, the Louisiana Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association announced May 15.

The Opelousas, La., racecourse was originally set to open for its Thoroughbred season April 8 and race through Aug. 29, but the track has remained closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The revised schedule submitted to the Louisiana State Racing Commission lists June 5 as the new opening date, with racing four days a week on a Wednesday-through-Saturday basis. Closing day would remain the same.

Boyd Gaming management applied for 14 days of Thoroughbred racing in June, 19 days in July, and 17 days in August at Evangeline.

May 16 marked the first day horses stabled outside Evangeline Downs and Delta Downs were welcomed back through the stable gates at the two tracks. Since mid-March, no new horses were allowed to enter the racetracks. The horses already stabled there were allowed to remain in place after Boyd Gaming reversed course after originally telling horsemen March 16 they had 48 hours to vacate the premises. Horses resumed training April 13 for the first time since the lockdown after Louisiana District Court judge Sharon Wilson on April 9 dissolved a temporary restraining order obtained by Boyd Gaming that resulted in no racehorse training.

“We’ve had some positive steps in the last month,” said Benard Chatters, the president of the Louisiana HBPA and a trainer at Evangeline Downs. “We were able to get the horses back training, and then today we were able to bring some of the horses back to the racetrack that had been locked out. The regular workout people were back, the outriders were back, and it was a really joyous and refreshing day for me.”

Chatters, who was at Evangeline on Saturday morning, said people were eager to get their horses back to the racetrack, including trainers who ship their horses in for workouts on the track.

Racing has not taken place in Louisiana since Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots ended its meet about a week early March 21.

 

Read BloodHorse Article

Delta Downs, Evangeline Downs Backsides to Open Saturday, May 16

Attention Horsemen at Delta Downs:

Per Boyd Management:

Starting Saturday, May 16, 2020 at 8AM, the horsemen that have been given stalls at Delta Downs will be allowed to move their horses onto the backside.

Contact stall superintendent Jess Chance at 337-794-7989 prior to arrival to coordinate tack room, feed room and walker wheel assignments.

Check lahbpa.org for updates and advisories.

 

Attention Horsemen at Evangeline Downs:

Per Boyd Management:

Starting Saturday, May 16 , 2020 at 8AM, the horsemen that have been allocated stalls at Evangeline Downs will be allowed to move horses onto the backside.

Anyone that has yet to occupy any stalls at Evangeline Downs MUST contact Randall Leger at 337-678-8635 prior to entrance to coordinate tack rooms, feed rooms, dorm rooms and walker wheel assignments.

Check lahbpa.org for updates and advisories.

Judge Sides With Louisiana Horsemen, Allows Training

Barring further legal action, training four days a week begins April 13.

The Louisiana Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association announced April 9 that Louisiana District Court Judge Sharon Wilson has dissolved a temporary restraining order obtained by Boyd Gaming that resulted in no racehorse training at some state tracks.

Boyd Gaming, which owns Evangeline Downs and Delta Downs in Louisiana, had been allowing stabling at its facilities but not training, citing health concerns related to COVID-19 for staff, among other reasons. Louisiana Downs, owned by Harrah’s, another gaming company, also prohibited training recently.

Under the terms of the court decision and barring further legal action, training on a four-days-a-week basis begins April 13, said Benard Chatters, the president of the Louisiana HBPA and a trainer at Evangeline Downs in Opelousas, La. He estimated there are 500 horses stabled there who have been limited to walking since mid-March.

Read BloodHorse Article

Evangeline Downs Cancels Training; Management Orders All Horses, Personnel Off The Backside

Evangeline Downs, operated by Boyd Gaming, has not only postponed it’s 2020 Thoroughbred race meet until further notice, but a mass text sent to horsemen on Monday also cancelled morning training hours and ordered all horses and personnel off the backside by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 18.

The Thoroughbred meet was scheduled to start on April 8.

Boyd Gaming has made several closures to gaming properties in the face of the international COVID-19 pandemic, but has yet to offer an official statement about the Evangeline decision.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

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