Century Downs Racetrack and Casino kicked off the fourth Standardbred Racing season on Sunday,
April 1st on a chilly Spring day. We were happy to see a strong card with 11 races with good-sized fields. The betting handle was up at $147,00 total, and there was a featured $10,000 guaranteed-PICK 4. Century Downs also featured an Easter Brunch in the Homestretch Room from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. which guests enjoyed greatly.
Mother Nature gave us a chilly opening day, but Jackson Wittup, Racing Secretary at Century Downs Racetrack and Casino was optimistic. “[The weather] could work two ways,” said Wittup. “If it was 16°C everybody might be out planting their gardens. A lot of our business is done through the Simulcast, and as far as our betting is concerned, they do not care what our weather is like, they are concerned about where they are going to make their bets.”
The 2018 Standardbred season looks to be starting a little slow, but will pick up in momentum in the coming weeks. “We’re off to a slow start, but once we get into the Stakes season and Fraser Downs finishes racing, and we get everybody back here again it will be a lot of fun.
“We’ll get some of the returning faces back here at Century Downs,” said Wittup. “Jim Marino, Jeff Waltenburg has a fairly large stable and was here a few seasons ago. He has a couple horses for Jarome Bouvier, who is very excited about sending his horses here. We will get some new faces here – Paul Davies is coming back who was here for our opening season.”
When we see new faces, it brings excitement to the track. “I am just happy when there is new drivers, new horses and new tactics out on the racetrack as it makes for better racing,” said Wittup.
One April 1st we welcomed back fan-favourite OUTLAWBURNTPOPCORN and the Century Downs Racing Club horses NAKKERTOK and NORTHERN TITAN. Guests were given the chance to purchase shares into the two-horse race club leading up to opening day. While the deadline was extended to April 6th, many people took advantage of this opportunity to learn what it takes to own a racehorse. All members of this club also will receive the Horsemen’s discount in the Mid City Grill, have the opportunity to go to the Backstretch to see the horses, talk to the trainers and have their photo taken in the Winners’ Circle if one of the horses win. This is a fantastic opportunity for anyone who is interested in the industry.
You can catch NAKKERTOK and NORTHERN TITAN this weekend! If you missed out on the Century Downs Racing Club, you can sign up for the Alberta Thoroughbred Race Club and own shares in three horses. For more information, please email clandry(at)xplornet.ca.