Arlington Park ends racing season Saturday
Arlington Park Saturday concluded its racing season, one greatly shortened by the pandemic and one run with few or no fans in the grandstand.
There has been fear that this year could mark the end of live racing at Arlington, after the CEO of the parent company, Churchill Downs Inc., cast doubt on whether the track would reopen next year.
However, 10 days ago the track reached an agreement with the Illinois Racing Board on a schedule for 68 live racing dates next year.
Racing Board Chairman Dan Beiser asked for a commitment for next year in writing. Arlington President Tony Petrillo said formal confirmation of that intent would come when he signs the race dates acceptance letters that will be sent out by the racing board.
"We do feel our responsibility to the industry as well as the community, and we intend to fulfill that in 2021 and beyond that when the opportunity does exist," Petrillo said at the meeting, adding that Churchill's corporate leadership team is having daily conversations about the future of Arlington.