Thursday, March 05, 2009
PIMLICO AND LAUREL PARK’S PARENT COMPANY FILES FOR CHAPTER 11 PROTECTION
LAUREL, MD. 03-05-09---The Maryland Jockey Club’s parent company, Magna Entertainment Corp. (“MEC”) and certain of its subsidiaries today filed for protection under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. MEC filed for Chapter 11 protection in order to implement a comprehensive financial restructuring. Simply put, MEC has far too much debt and interest expense.
MEC believes that this Chapter 11 restructuring will bring its level of debt in line with current economic realities and take pressure off its operations, which have historically been burdened with significant interest expense and financing fees. In today’s difficult economic environment, many companies are using a Chapter 11 filing to substantially reduce debt and position themselves for future growth.
In Maryland, live racing will continue at Laurel Park as scheduled on a Wednesday through Saturday schedule until April 11 with simulcasting at Laurel and its sister track, Pimlico Race Course on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. Live racing will shift to Pimlico for the spring meeting after the Easter holiday, headlined by the 134th running of the $1 million Preakness® Stakes (Grade I), the middle jewel of racing’s Triple Crown.
“As far as are guests are concerned there will be no change to the operation,” said Maryland Jockey Club president and chief operating officer Tom Chuckas. “The employees will not have to worry about payroll and the horsemen’s purse account is protected. This is a tough time and very unnerving but at the end of the day it will create a more positive environment and a much stronger company.”