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Old 04-07-2017, 11:27 AM   #1
Thomas Roulston
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Colonial Downs Is Still Breathing

But barely ...

http://www.richmond.com/business/loc...9868c9ce9.html
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Old 04-07-2017, 01:22 PM   #2
Si2see
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Colonial downs is dead, check the article date.
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Old 04-07-2017, 01:53 PM   #3
Thomas Roulston
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Has it been torn down?

Even Green Mountain Racetrack hasn't.
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Old 04-07-2017, 06:20 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Roulston View Post
Has it been torn down?

Even Green Mountain Racetrack hasn't.
I was racing there when racing ended.

9/12/76 if I remember correctly.

Wow... more than 40 years ago....
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Old 04-07-2017, 07:55 PM   #5
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Shame what happened to Colonial Downs.
One of my favorite tracks to play & visit.
Have not been back to see the Virginia family since it closed (don't tell them thats the reason)
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Old 04-07-2017, 08:10 PM   #6
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Shame what happened to Colonial Downs.
One of my favorite tracks to play & visit.
Have not been back to see the Virginia family since it closed (don't tell them thats the reason)
Yes, sad

Family .. I love it
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Old 04-08-2017, 12:33 PM   #7
Si2see
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Originally Posted by Thomas Roulston View Post
Has it been torn down?

Even Green Mountain Racetrack hasn't.

Not yet, and as devastating as that would be, unless there is a miracle they will never at that facility again regardless if the building is still there.
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Old 04-08-2017, 09:25 PM   #8
thespaah
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I think this a shame. A God damned shame.
And the blame falls squarely on the shoulders of the Virginia HBPA....THEY scuttled the track.
Of course the Maryland horsemen had a hand in this dastardly enterprise as well.
The MD guys did not like the opening in the Laurel/Pimlico schedule that indirectly helped Colonial.
The VA horsemen are jerks because they wanted money that was not there and never was. Now those idiots have to take their horses out of state to race.
Virginia has a rather sizeable breeding industry. And the Colonial meet supported VA Bred horses with purse bumps.
So selfish and so stubborn were the VA horsemen, thney also demanded the shut down of all of the Colonial satellite wagering facilities.
As far as I am concerned, the management of the VA HBPA should be lined up against a wall so a bunch of sixth graders can pepper them with paper clips shot with rubber bands.
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Old 04-10-2017, 11:08 AM   #9
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I share most of your sentiments, except I blamed the ownership almost entirely.

The whole thing started with empty promises, that colonial downs would one day be X amount of racing days ( I believe the number was 45 based off memory ) And the year it got into the mid 30s was great, all horsemen happy, everyone happy, except the track ownership.... They claimed they could not make a profit while being open for live racing.

Then the first bullet was fired, more like a cannonball , was when they cut the days the following year to the mid 20s. Everyone that was once happy was now displeased but accepted it for the most part.... Until after that season where the suggested the boutique 8 day meet. That is when everything fell apart.

Jason
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Old 04-11-2017, 12:46 AM   #10
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Morven Park recently scrapped plans to re-shape their land and have thoroughbred racing in the fall of 2017, so it will be interesting to see where else the Virginia Equine Alliance will be able to hold thoroughbred racing.

They had harness races on a mile track at Oak Ridge Estates (in 2015 I think), so that might be one possible option. I'm not familiar with any other places that might be considered.
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Old 04-11-2017, 01:57 PM   #11
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The track was doomed for failure when it was not built in the VA Beach area to take advantage of the tourism in the summer. Not to mention a base of 1 million people local and near North Carolina could have helped sustain the track.

Where it sits is in the middle of nowhere.
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Old 04-12-2017, 07:59 PM   #12
foregoforever
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I drove by there today. Everything is fenced off, so you can't get to the track or building. I drove around behind it and could glimpse the building and a very small piece of the track. I couldn't see any green to speak of. Very depressing.

I understand the problems with the location. Yet despite that, from about 2000-2005, things seemed to be turning upward for Colonial. They were on TVG and HRTV, there was some buzz among horseplayers, and the DRF was even selling a Colonial PP package. Most all the good turf horses were showing up on Va Derby Day. I still count Kitten's Joy vs Artie Schiller as one of the best races I've ever seen.

All the squabbling about dates started around 2010, and we've seen all the silliness since then. But somehow, everyone managed to turn gold into lead between 2005 and 2010, more or less, and I still struggle to figure out how they did it.

I suspect two things. The racing took a downturn once Laurel opened their new turf course around 2006 or so, which was about the time Colonial booted out the Maryland Jockey Club, which had been running the Colonial meet. Colonial really needed the alliance with Maryland, but once Laurel had their turf course, they didn't really need Colonial any more.

The other was the ADW war that started about that time as well. Colonial demanded ridiculous source market fees, and all the ADWs bailed. No more TVG or HRTV, no more ADW promotions. Then they made it even worse with the ADW tax.

It still amazes me that any ADW would accept accounts from Virginia residents with the 10% ADW tax, and with Virginia putting on no live racing at all. In an industry full of freeloaders, Virginia has to stand at the top of the list in that regard.
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Old 04-16-2017, 10:57 AM   #13
Thomas Roulston
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSB View Post
I was racing there when racing ended.

9/12/76 if I remember correctly.

Wow... more than 40 years ago....

And a jockey - Tomas Arroyo - was killed in a spill on closing day.
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