Churchill Downs Incorporated

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Churchill Downs Inc.
Type Public
Industry Online Gaming, Gaming, Entertainment and Racing
Headquarters Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
Key people Robert L. Evans
Employees 1,000[1]

Churchill Downs Incorporated is the parent company of Churchill Downs. The company has evolved from one racetrack in Louisville, Kentucky, to a multi-state, publicly traded company with racetracks, casinos and the United States’ leading online wagering company among its growing portfolio of successful businesses.


After simulcasting became commonplace in the early 1990s the racetrack decided to expand its holdings and move into the simulcasting industry. Under the leadership of President and CEO, Thomas H. "Tom" Meeker, the racetrack began to buy and build more racetracks. In 1994, Churchill Downs began to expand its holdings with the plans to partner with a new racetrack in Indiana. The plan resulted in the purchase of Hoosier Park from businessman Louis Carlo.

In 1998, CDI purchased Ellis Park Racecourse in Henderson, Kentucky. In 1999, the company acquired Calder Race Course and Hollywood Park Racetrack from Hollywood Park Inc. In 2000, CDI merged with Arlington Park and the eight OTB's owned by Arlington. In 2004 the Churchill Downs Incorporated finalized the purchase of Fair Grounds Race Course.

In April 2002, Churchill Downs Incorporated established the Green Pastures Program in partnership with the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, a leading American racehorse rescue and adoption organization.

In 2005, the company announced that it was selling Hollywood Park Racetrack to the Bay Meadows Land Company. The plan is to demolish the track if California does not approve alternative gaming at racetracks. As part of the deal, Bay Meadows and Hollywood Park joined the Churchill Downs Simulcast Network. Another component was a buyback provision if the track did get slot machines.

The company sold Ellis Park in 2006.

The company acquired Harlow's Casino Resort in Greenville, Mississippi in December 2010 for $138 million.[2] In October 2012, the company acquired the Riverwalk Casino and Hotel in Vicksburg, Mississippi for $141 million.[3]

In December 2012, a joint venture of Churchill Downs and Delaware North Companies bought Lebanon Raceway in Lebanon, Ohio for $60 million.[4] Ohio had recently authorized slot machines at racetracks, which the companies planned to take advantage of by transferring the racing license to a new $215-million facility to be built between Cincinnati and Dayton.[5]

In March 2013, Churchill Downs agreed to buy the Oxford Casino in Oxford, Maine for $160 million.[6]

Economics and stock[edit]

Churchill Downs Incorporated is listed on the NASDAQ as CHDN. The company is the most profitable track owner in the horse racing industry. The company is not plagued by the losses of other similar companies such as Magna Entertainment Corporation.


Churchill Downs Incorporated owns the following properties or entities:

Recent performances and the future[edit]

CDI President and CEO Thomas H. "Tom" Meeker announced he will retire in 2007 or earlier if a replacement is found. In July 2006, CDI hired Robert L. Evans as CEO and President. Fair Grounds Race Course is conducting a limited 2005-2006 meet at Harrah's Louisiana Downs after the facility, located on Gentilly Street in New Orleans, Louisiana was damaged during and after Hurricane Katrina. Calder Race Course in Florida was damaged during Hurricane Wilma and was closed for several days. Ellis Park was also owned by CDI when it was damaged during a tornado in November 2005.

The company is a major partner in the Kentucky Equine Education Project. The Project seeks to inform citizens about their perceived need for alternative gaming at racetracks. The track is also seeking alternative gaming (i.e. slot machines) at the tracks located outside of Kentucky. In August 2007, CDI partnered with competitor Magna in a proposal bid to take over the New York Racing Association (NYRA).

Churchill Downs Inc. and Saratoga Casino and Raceway announced in May 2014 they will partner in bidding for a New York casino license to build a $300 million resort near the state capital of Albany. [7]


On May 10, 2004, the company filed an amended 10-K after the market close to reflect the reclassification of certain simulcast "host fee" expenses in its audited financial statements.[8]


  1. ^ "Company Profile for Churchill Downs Inc (CHDN)". Retrieved 2008-10-23. 
  2. ^ "Churchill Downs completes Harlow’s purchase". Business First (Louisville, KY). December 16, 2010. Retrieved 2012-12-29. 
  3. ^ "Churchill Downs closes on $141 million acquisition of Mississippi casino and hotel". Washington Post. AP. October 23, 2012. Retrieved 2012-10-24. 
  4. ^ Matt Hegarty (December 21, 2012). "Churchill Downs Inc., Delaware North Cos. complete purchase of Lebanon Raceway". Daily Racing Form. Retrieved 2012-12-30. 
  5. ^ "Churchill Downs, partner complete purchase of licenses and assets for planned Ohio racino". Business First (Louisville, KY). December 21, 2012. Retrieved 2012-12-30. 
  6. ^ Jessica Hall (March 30, 2013). "Oxford Casino to be sold for $160 million". Portland Press Herald. Retrieved 2013-03-30. 
  7. ^ "Churchill Downs partners on New York casino bid". The Courier Journal. May 13, 2014. Retrieved 2014-05-13. 
  8. ^ "Churchill Downs Incorporated to File Amended 10-K for 2003;Reclassification of 'Host Fee' Expenses Will Have No Effect on Earnings". 

Coordinates: 38°15′18″N 85°34′51″W / 38.254977°N 85.580740°W / 38.254977; -85.580740