Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Churchill Downs Incorporated, FHBPA Reach Purse and Slots Agreements at Calder Race Course
Calder Race Course Racing Signal to Resume Out-of-State Broadcasts on July 10
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (July 7, 2008) – Officials of Churchill Downs Incorporated (“Company” or “CDI”) (NASDAQ: CHDN) and representatives of the Florida Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (“FHBPA”) have come to agreements on a 2008 purse contract at Calder Race Course and on a slots contract for when the track begins slots operations on a yet-to-be-determined date.
The agreements pave the way for Calder to resume distributing its signal to the simulcast network throughout the country, including off-track betting (“OTB”) facilities and racetracks, beginning with races on Thursday, July 10.
CDI and the FHBPA will continue to work toward a resolution of the remaining outstanding issue, which concerns signal distribution to national account wagering platforms. “We are happy that our fans who wager through racetracks and OTBs will soon be able to enjoy the Calder product, and we are committed to working with the FHBPA to ensure that our customers will also have the opportunity to wager via TwinSpires.com and other online wagering platforms as soon as possible,” Flanery continued. “We appreciate the hard work put into these negotiations by the FHBPA on the slots and purses issues and look forward to productive discussions moving forward.”
Under the terms of the slot agreement, Florida horsemen are guaranteed $14.375 million for purses in the first three full years of the slots operation and 6.75 percent of slot revenue for the remainder of the ten-year term. Additional provisions provide for the horsemen to share in the upside should the Calder slot facility generate specified slot revenue minimums in the second and third full years of operations.
“Over the past few years, our company has invested millions in the various efforts to approve alternative gaming in Florida, including $3.1 million for the 2008 referendum alone,” said Flanery. “We will also invest tens of millions of dollars in the construction and operation of a slots facility at Calder. According to the terms announced today, we estimate at this time that horsemen will benefit from CDI’s investments to the tune of approximately $50 million, potentially, over the term of the agreement. This underscores our company’s commitment to the horse racing industry.”
CDI has also announced that it has agreed to dismiss without prejudice the lawsuit filed on April 24 against the FHBPA and its officers. The suit, filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky, alleged violations under the Sherman Antitrust Act and will continue against the remaining parties, including the Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Group.
Churchill Downs Incorporated (“Churchill Downs”), headquartered in Louisville, Ky., owns and operates world-renowned horse racing venues throughout the United States. Churchill Downs’ four racetracks in Florida, Illinois, Kentucky and Louisiana host many of North America’s most prestigious races, including the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks, Arlington Million, Princess Rooney Handicap and Louisiana Derby. Churchill Downs racetracks have hosted seven Breeders’ Cup World Championships. Churchill Downs also owns off-track betting facilities and has interests in various advance-deposit wagering, television production, telecommunications and racing services companies, including a 50-percent interest in the national cable and satellite network HorseRacing TV™, that support the Company’s network of simulcasting and racing operations. Churchill Downs trades on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol CHDN and can be found on the Internet at http://www.churchilldownsincorporated.com.