Minnesota horse racing will become a premium venue benefiting horse racing and all businesses supporting the equine industry
The Minnesota Racing Commission (MRC), which regulates horse racing and card clubs at race tracks in the state, approved the Cooperative Marketing Agreement between Canterbury Park and Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community on June 13, 2012. The agreement launches a ten-year cooperative marketing program to substantially increase purses and pursue joint marketing programs.
"This agreement will turn-the-tide for thoroughbred and quarter horse racing in Minnesota," states Jesse Overton, Chair of the Minnesota Racing Commission. "The Minnesota horse racing industry was near financial collapse but will now become a premium horse racing venue that will significantly stimulate state horse racing businesses. We encourage innovative thinking such as this and hope that this is the beginning for many more innovations in the thoroughbred, quarter horse and standard bred horse industries."
A key indicator for the health of the horse racing industry is the breeding trends. The number of Minnesota foals has dropped from a high of 777 state thoroughbred and quarter horse foals born in 1990 to 153 foals in 2011. "The Minnesota Racing Commission has recognized and communicated our concerns about the precarious position of the state horse racing industry," continues Overton. "Thankfully the industry put aside old thinking and pursued a new way to survive and thrive in the coming years."
This is a cooperative agreement that breaks new ground with a major state Indian Tribe partnering with another entertainment business, Canterbury Park. The ten-year agreement includes:
- $75 million for purses over the ten year period
- $8.5 million for marketing during that period
- Joint marketing programs between Canterbury and Mystic Lake Casino
- Possible simulcasting at Mystic Lake
- Opposition to additional gaming
About Minnesota Racing Commission
The Minnesota Racing Commission (MRC) was established in 1983 to regulate horse racing and in 1999 to regulate card clubs at the Class A racetracks in the state. The legislative charge is to ensure the integrity of racing and card playing, and promote the breeding of racehorses to stimulate agriculture and rural agribusiness. Currently the MRC regulates Canterbury Park and Running Aces Harness Park. For more information visit www.mrc.state.mn.us/.
Minnesota Racing Commission
Commissioner Kristine Sundberg, 952-239-6394