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PO Box 449
Ruidoso Downs, NM 88346

575-378-4431

Racing News Blog

Ever wondered what exactly a Trifecta is or who's who in the horse racing industry?  Welcome to the Racing News Blog! Our racing stories will help you learn more about the rich history of the horse racing world and maybe even help you out with your betting strategy.

 

Letter of Intent To Sell Ruidoso Downs Signed

Ty Wyant

            A group of five highly-successful businessmen who are heavily vested in the breeding and racing of American Quarter Horses and R.D. Hubbard have all signed a letter of intent that involves Hubbard selling Ruidoso Downs Race Track and the Ruidoso Horse Sale Company to the group.

            The individuals in the group are Stan Sigman, Gary McKinney, Narciso (Chicho) Flores and Johnny Trotter (all from Texas) and John Andreini of California.

            Hubbard, 81, bought Ruidoso Downs in 1988 with Dr. Ed Allred, who also owns Los Alamitos Race Course in California. Hubbard later purchased Allred’s interest in the Ruidoso facility.

            The prospective ownership group met Saturday morning in Oklahoma City and elected Sigman as its chair.

            “We are about to start our due diligence, and in due time we will start the process of gaining regulatory approval,” said Sigman.

            “It is our goal to close the deal in the fourth quarter of 2017,” he added.On Sunday morning, Ruidoso Downs president and general manager Shaun Hubbard said, “These men know Ruidoso Downs, and they are committed to keeping it as the best place in the nation for Quarter Horse racing.”

            R.D. Hubbard, an internationally acclaimed businessman, has been a leading Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse owner and breeder for decades and has had ownership in such other tracks as Hollywood Park, Los Alamitos, Zia Park, Turf Paradise and The Woodlands in addition to Ruidoso Downs. Hubbard owned a farm in Kentucky for many years and now has his Crystal Springs Farm located just a short drive from Ruidoso Downs. “Nothing will change at Crystal Springs, except maybe putting an All American Futurity winner in one of the paddocks,” Hubbard said.

            “I’m not about to quit racing. I still need to win the All American Futurity. We’re still breeding mares and still making babies” he said. “I’ll be at the sales this year buying horses.”

            During Hubbard’s ownership, the Grade 1 All American Futurity grew from a $2,000,000 purse in 1989 to $3,000,000 last year. The Grade 1 All American Derby went from $330,812 in 1989 to $2,415,984 last year.

            The Ruidoso Futurity G1 zoomed from $357,172 in 1989 (when it was the Kansas Futurity) to $1,000,000 in 2016. The Ruidoso Derby (formerly the Kansas Derby) went from $44,986 in 1989 to $1,068,631 in 2016.

            The Grade 1 Rainbow Futurity G1 was $447,630 the first year Hubbard owned the track. In 2016, it was $1,000,000. In the same time the Grade 1Rainbow Derby jumped from $398,231 to $1,324,488.

            Under Hubbard’s ownership, the Ruidoso Horse Sales Company has become the nation’s No. 1 seller (in dollar volume) of racing bred American Quarter Horse yearlings.

            Horses began entering the grounds this morning at Ruidoso Downs and the track opens for training on Friday. The Quarter Horse gates will be set next Monday (May 1), which is also the date for entry into the May 8-10 two-year-old training races. The meet opens on May 26.

 

—Ben Hudson

 

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Gate Hours for Backside Area at Ruidoso Downs Race Track

Amanda Greer

Ruidoso Downs Race Track will have the backside gates open from 7:30 am until 5:00 pm from April 17th to April 24th. 

Starting April 24th the gates will be open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Any further questions please contact Dennis Monroe at 575-378-4431.

Track, Grandstand Improvements Ready For Opening Day

Ty Wyant

            Improvements to both the grandstand and the track will be ready for the opening of Ruidoso Downs on May 26.

            Opening day features the first of two days of trials to the Grade 1, $1-million (est.) Ruidoso Futurity and the season concludes on Labor Day with the traditional running of the Grade 1, $3-million (est.) All American Futurity.

            Grandstand improvements include new box seats on the lower level along with painting in the box seat area and the All American Turf Club.

            “We’re always looking for ways to improve the Ruidoso Downs’ experience,” said vice president of operations Leonard Turano. “These improvements will be well received by our patrons.”

            Additional material has been added to the Ruidoso Downs racing surface and the rail between the quarter horse track and the thoroughbred tracks has been replaced.

            “Safety for the jockeys and horses is always the highest of priorities at Ruidoso Downs,” said vice president of for the race track and maintenance Les Nichols. “These upgrades speak to the dedication of everybody at Ruidoso Downs for safe racing.”

            The schedule of events before the season starts:

            April 17           Barn area open for stall setup

            April 22           Job Fair

            April 24           Barn area open for horses

            April 28           Track open

            May 1              Quarter horse gates set

            May 1              Entries for training races

            May 5-6          Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby simulcasts

            May 8-10        Training races

            May 15            Thoroughbred gate set

            May 19            Entries for Ruidoso Futurity trials

            May 20            Preakness Stakes simulcast

            May 21            Entries for Ruidoso Derby

            For a complete list of important dates at Ruidoso Downs, go to http://www.raceruidoso.com/important-dates/.

            For complete Ruidoso Downs’ information, go to www.raceruidoso.com, visit the Ruidoso Downs Race Track and Casino Facebook page and follow the Ruidoso Press Box (@RuiPressBox) on Twitter.

 

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