|Kentucky Governor Signs Bill Authorizing
Quarter Horse Racing
(Thursday, March 27, 2003)
- Kentucky Gov. Paul Patton on Thursday signed ceremonial legislation
that effectively allows for live Quarter Horse races and simulcasts
to return to the state.
Members of the Kentucky Quarter Horse Racing Association, including
president Dwaine Cissell, attended the signing at the state capitol
The bill, HB 389, updates Kentucky's racing statute to include
Quarter Horse racing in the sections relating to intertrack wagering
and simulcasting. The legislation allows a track licensed to conduct
Quarter Horse racing to send and receive a signal and allows a track
licensed to conduct racing to send and receive a signal. The bill
was sponsored by Rep. Fred Nesler and co-sponsored by Majority Floor
Leader Greg Stumbo.
"We've been working on getting live Quarter Horse racing
back in Kentucky since last year," Cissell told The Blood-Horse.
"Now, we basically just need to find a home to run some races."
At a Kentucky Racing Commission meeting last October, Turfway
Park president Bob Elliston said his track would be willing to conduct
Quarter Horse racing on a limited basis. Representatives from the
Kentucky division of the Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association,
representing Thoroughbred racing interests, voiced opposition to
the plan, stating that there wasn't enough public interest to support
a return of Quarter Horse racing to the state.
Also in October, the commission denied a license to Southern Bluegrass
Racing, which had hoped to build a Quarter Horse track in rural
Williamsburg. The last live Quarter Horse races in Kentucky were
held at Bluegrass Downs in Paducah in 1992.
Cissell said the plans to meet with representatives from Turfway
Park and Thunder Ridge, a standardbred track in Prestonburg, about
possible Quarter Horse dates in 2004.