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Batavia Downs

July 31, 2012 - 12:56pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Press release:

Possible stars of the future -- 2-year-old colt and gelding pacers -- converge on Batavia Downs Casino when New York Sire Stakes action continues on Wednesday night (Aug. 1).

Wednesday's 13-race program, which gets under way at 6:25 p.m., features three NYSS legs worth more than $36,000 each and five divisions of the Excelsior series worth more than $12,000 each.

Flipper J’s freshman 1:54.4 track record set in 2010 and tied by Forever Just in 2011, both with Jason Bartlett in the bike, could be in jeopardy. Cowgirl Hall lowered the benchmark for 3-year-old trotting fillies (1:57.2) when the New York Sire Stakes made its first local start of the season here this past Saturday night.

The NYSS kicks off in race two when a short but select field of New York breds square off for purse money of $36,900. Drawing post five is the Artiscape-Lo Gophobia colt, Framed Art. He comes off a 1:53.4 track record performance at Saratoga Raceway with Mark MacDonald at the controls. Trainer Andrew Stafford gives MacDonald the return call.

Installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite is the Art Major-Classical Yankee colt, Doctor Butch. He comes in off a 1:54 score at Saratoga with Tim Tetrick in the sulky. Doctor Butch briefly held the record at Saratoga until it was broken later on the program by Framed Art. Trainer Linda Toscano hands over the lines to Jim Morrill Jr.

Goshen track record holder (1:56.3), Thirty Two Red, was a prohibitive favorite in his Saratoga leg but he made a costly break at the start and was eliminated. That was the son of Bettor’s Delight-Sakura Hanover’s first defeat after NYSS wins at Monticello and Buffalo. Ray Schnittker is the trainer/driver.

The field also includes Dealmaker, second to Framed Art at Saratoga, and the Ron Burke trainee Royce Blue Chip.

NYSS action continues in race five, when a field of six will line-up for $37,600 in purse money. The Bettor’s Delight-Flibbertigibbet colt, Swift As A Shadow, who drew the rail, starts out as the 5-2 favorite. Once again trainer Linda Toscano will call on the services of Jim Morrill Jr. Swift As A Shadow’s lone career win came at Monticello when he paced his back half in :56.1, to score in 1:56.4, in his first New York Sire Stakes engagement.

Three colts and three geldings do battle in the third and final $37,600 NYSS division, carded as race seven. This could be a race handicappers may be shopping for some value. I’m Banksy (Art Major-Delightfully Yours) begins as the 2-1 favorite. He ships in off a 1:53.4 score at Pocono but has never raced on a half-mile racetrack. Jim Morrill Jr. drives for trainer Fred Grant. Trainer/driver Patrick Lachance sends out a very dangerous colt in Sir Cary’s Z Tam.

The son of Bettor’s Delight -Yankee Celebration had the misfortune of coming first over against the talented Doctor Butch at Saratoga and before that, finished behind the same rival and another top colt, Thirty Two Red, at Monticello.

The five Excelsior races go off as races one, three, eight, 10 and 12. Racing fans unable to attend the races can watch all the action from Batavia Downs via streaming video at www.bataviadownscasino.com <http://www.bataviadownscasino.com/> . Simply click on the “Live Racing” section and then on the “Video” link.

July 28, 2012 - 3:31pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Press release:

Current Ca Ching went gate-to-wire and held off the challenges of Go Jesse Go and the favored Kash N Credit to win the $9,000 Open Trot at Batavia Downs Friday night.

Leaving off the two-hole, Current Ca Ching ($7.40) went the mile in 1:59.1 after posting fractions of :28.3, :57.4 and 1:28 for winning driver Keith Kash Jr.

It was a blanket finish as Current Ca Ching was able to hold off the late charge of pocket sitting Go Jesse Go, who was beaten by quarter of a length at the wire. Kash N Credit, who was parked the entire mile, lost by just a length and a quarter.

It was the seventh win of the season of Current Ca Ching and second in his last three starts. Current Ca Ching is owned by Rocco Stebbins, of Rochester, and trained by Ron Stebbins.

Shawn Gray notched a three-bagger on the night while four drivers all scored doubles, Kevin Cummings, Ray Fisher Jr., Jim McNeight and Keith Kash Jr.

Darrin Monti and Bob Gruber III each had a double on the training side.

Tonight's the kick-off of the 2012 Batavia Downs stakes season when three-year-old trotting fillies taking center stage in three divisions of the New York Sires Stakes. Post is 6:25 p.m. for the 14-race program.

Also carded this evening are five divisions of th Excelsior Series, with each worth more than $12,000.

Racing fans unable to attend the races can watch the all the action from Batavia Downs via streaming video at www.bataviadownscasino.com. Simply click on the “Live Racing” section and then on the “Video” link.

July 27, 2012 - 1:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Press release:

Three-year-old trotting fillies will square off in three divisions to open the local New York Sire Stake season on Saturday night, July 28 at Batavia Downs Casino. Post time will be at 6:25 p.m.

The first Saturday night of the annual summer-fall meet will also feature five Excelsior Series divisions, with each division worth more than $12,000.

The New York Sire Stakes will begins in race two, in which $43,980 will be up for grabs. The Credit Winner--Pacific Legacy filly Lima Playmate will start at 5-2 on the morning line for the connections of Ray Schnittker and Lima Playmate Stables.

Lima Playmate ($225,891) will get the services of Steve Smith. Regular driver Ray Schnittker will be at bit tied up, he’s will be at The Meadowlands preparing his world champion filly Check Me Out for the Hambletonian Oaks Eliminations.

New York Sire Stakes action will then move to race four, in which $44,780 will be on the line. The much-improved Kristens Victory (Cash Hall--Treasured Victory), who overcame post seven at Tioga Downs to score at odds of 29-1 in a division of the Tompkins-Geers, might be the filly to beat in this one.

The Karen Garland trainee has really picked up her game since going on Lasix. Owner Steve Smith, who drove her to second place finishes in New York Sire Stakes races at Monticello Raceway and Yonkers Raceway will be back in the sulky.

The last but certainly not least $43.980 New York Sire Stakes division was carded as race eight. As far as being continuous, it really doesn’t get any better with two of the top sophomore trotting fillies in the New York Sire Stakes drawing into the same division.

The Credit Winner--Meadowbranch Mary filly Fortunista will open as the favorite on the morning line at 5-2, basically due to post position; she drew the rail for owner-trainer Gilbert Garcia-Herrera and Barbara and Donald Arnstine.

Fortunista ships to Western New York on quite a form spree, having won her last four starts including New York Sire Stakes legs at Buffalo Raceway, Yonkers Raceway and Monticello Raceway. She sports season’s earnings of $172,001.

The talented Cowgirl Hall (Cash Hall--Britt’s Spirit) won’t go down without a fight. In her nine starts in 2012 she’s won five and has been second in three of them for trainer-driver “Gates” Brunet. She’s earned $144,955 this season for owners Ted Gewertz, M. H. Rosenthal and Jean and Debbie Brunet.

The Excelsior series races were carded as race one, six, 10, 11 and 12.

Racing fans unable to attend the races can watch the all the action from Batavia Downs via streaming video at www.bataviadownscasino.com <http://www.bataviadownscasino.com/> . Simply click on the “Live Racing” section and then on the “Video” link.

July 24, 2012 - 10:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

And they're off ... for the 66th season, there is live harness racing at Batavia Downs.

More than 3,000 racing fans turned out for opening night and they witnessed Shawn Gray, who captured Buffalo's 2012 driving title, notch three wins.

Two other of the nation's top drivers, Dan Noble and Jim Morrill Jr., were also featured on the night.

July 20, 2012 - 6:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Press Release:

A bigger signature race, a new first race post time and Sunday afternoon racing in August are just some of the changes in store when racing returns for the 66th season on Monday (July 23) at Batavia Downs Casino. The pacers and trotters will meet at America’s oldest lighted harness track for 72 exciting race dates.

The Robert J. Kane Memorial Invitational Pace, the track's signature event, will now offer a $50,000 purse. This year’s Kane Memorial is slated for October 6. Last year, Aracache Hanover with Trevor Henry in the bike, lowered the Downs all-age record when he paced to victory in 1:51.1. Aracache Hanover is locally owned by William Switala and James Martin.

Racing fans will need to arrive 15 minutes earlier with first race post for all evening racing programs now slated for 6:25 p.m. Racing gates open at 5 p.m. with the exception of August 11 and September 15, when racing gates open for Old Fashioned night at 4:30 p.m.

A total of six matinees will be offered, including all four Sundays in August. The other two afternoon race cards are Labor Day and Columbus Day. Post time for all matinees remains at 1:15 p.m. with racing gates opening at 12 p.m.

Racing will be conducted on a Monday-Wednesday-Friday-Saturday night basis for the first two weeks of the annual Summer-Fall meet with Sundays replacing Mondays in August. Twelve races will be carded nightly except on Saturdays when the Genesee County racetrack will host 13-race programs.

A complete racing calendar is available for download at www.batavia-downs.com.

Changes were made to the wagering menu, with the major change being the minimum on trifecta wagering has been lowered to 50 cents. However a $1 wager is required. One dollar daily double wagering is also being offered.

Superfecta wagering is now offered on all races with the exception of races one and seven. The Pick-4 has been moved to the third race and the late-late double moves to the last two races nightly. The popular Pick-6, which paid $10,000 to one lucky ticket holder last season, begins on race seven.

North America’s leading dash winning harness racing driver in 2011, Dan Noble, will make his Batavia Downs debut on opening night. Noble led all drivers last year with 773 wins. He currently sits fourth this year with 320 wins.

Shawn Gray, currently the leading driver at Buffalo Raceway, will also be racing at Batavia Downs for the first time. The Maine native shipped to Buffalo in January and has notched 185 wins so far this season there.

Jim Morrill Jr., who recently won the $445,594 Yonkers Trot with Archangel, makes a special appearance on Monday night. Morrill established records for most wins and earnings in a single season at the Downs in 2006.

Again this season all racing programs will contain $2 free play coupons that can be redeemed at Players Club. The cost to purchase a program remains at $2, however on opening night and on July 28, the first New York Sire Stakes event of the season, racing programs will be free.

Player’s Club members dining in the track's historic clubhouse will receive $5 in Casino free play with the purchase of a buffet. On Sunday afternoon, the cost of the lunch buffet minus the free play coupon is just $3.95.

The entire racing season will be broadcast via live streaming video at www.batavia-downs.com. Race replays are available at the same web address.

The 2012 season features a variety of promotions, including two old fashioned nights, the biggest free handicapping contest ever and the annual family fun day at the races featuring the hilarious wiener dog races.

July 17, 2012 - 8:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business.

Press release:

Batavia Downs Casino generated more than $11.5 million for education during the first two fiscal quarters of 2012 (January - June), according to the recently released data by the Division of Lottery. As part of Batavia Downs Casino’s ongoing support of New York’s education, 51 percent of Batavia Downs Casino net win is given to the New York Lottery.

“We’re proud to our contributions to New York State Education, year after year," said Mike Kane, president and CEO of Batavia Downs Casino.  “Compared with the revenue generated last year in the same time period, we’re looking at major growth.”

Batavia Downs’ contributions from January – June in 2011 were 9.86 million dollars, making this year’s contribution a 17-percent increase from last year.  Since opening in 2005, Batavia Downs Casino has generated more than $120 million in education funding for New York.

July 13, 2012 - 12:27am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business.

The new LCD-based sign, replacing the old neon sign, atop Batavia Downs was illuminated for the first time Thursday evening.

July 9, 2012 - 2:03pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business.

Workers this morning carefully dismantled the landmark Batavia Downs sign atop the roof of the grandstand of the legendary racetrack.

The neon sign is being replaced with a more energy efficient and less costly LCD sign that has been fabricated to exactly match the lettering of the old sign.

Ryan Hasenauer, marketing director for Western Regional OTB, said officials plan to keep the B and the D from the old sign and display them in some manner on the property, but the future of the remaining letters of the sign has yet to be determined.

Bottom photo: The first two letters of the new sign, time permitting, will be fitted into place some time today.

June 28, 2012 - 6:59am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Press release:

Batavia Downs officials have announced the names of the five students selected by their high schools to participate in the 2012 college scholarship race.

They are: Lindsay Hilburger -- Notre Dame of Batavia; Sonia Nevinger -- Alexander; Jessica Levins -- Batavia; Jamie Marshall -- Elba; and Leanne King -- Pembroke.

The race will be held on Sept. 15, between the fifth and sixth live harness races at Batavia Downs. Approximate post time for the scholarship race is 7:45 p.m.

A total of $7,500 in college scholarship funds will be given to each high school student in the dash for cash. The race will be conducted at one mile -- two laps around Batavia Downs' historic half-mile oval.

“We're thrilled to provide additional scholarship funds to area high school students,” said Todd Haight, general manager of Batavia Downs. “This coincides with the contributions made daily by Batavia Downs Casino to the New York state lottery for education.”

All students are required to practice at least five times during the month of August with the driver/trainer they will be teamed up with. This exposes the student to the full equine experience associated with the racing industry.

Scholarship breakdowns are as follows: $3,000 to the winner; $2,000 for second; $1,200 for third; $800 for fourth; and $500 for fifth. Scholarships are not equine specific and can be used for any higher education.

The event is a partnership of Batavia Downs Casino, Buffalo Raceway, Harness Horse Breeders of New York and the Western New York Harness Horsemen's Association.

The 66th season at America’s oldest lighted harness track gets under way on July 23 with a new post time of 6:25 p.m.

June 21, 2012 - 9:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business, photos.

Officials with Western Regional OTB, Batavia Downs and invited guests were in Rochester today for a ribbon cutting and unveiling of the work done so far on the new marquee signs for Batavia Downs.

The work is being completed by Premier Sign Systems.

Ryan Hasenauer, director of marketing for Batavia Downs, provided the pictures.

June 20, 2012 - 12:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, sports.

Press release:

Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation, owner of Batavia Downs Casino, has today announced a strategic partnership of services with Saratoga Casino and Raceway and ebet Technologies, LLC. Subject to approval of the New York State Racing and Wagering Board, these two prominent New York State racing entities will be partnering in the launch of the new advance deposit internet wagering platform, www.BataviaBets.com.

“We felt very strongly that we should partner with a proven organization within New York State such as Saratoga,” said Michael Kane, CEO of Western OTB/ Batavia Downs. “This will work towards the betterment of wagering for our customers and be a great example on how we can work together within New York State to strengthen the horse-racing industry.”

Kane also added that support was acquired for SaratogaBets because of the platform’s proven success.

Western OTB’s unprecedented alliance with Saratoga Casino and Raceway is part of an effort amongst New York State racing entities to work together to create cost-effective revenue opportunities in today’s highly competitive pari-mutuel environment.

“We have experienced great success with www.SaratogaBets.com, our advance deposit wagering platform,” said Jamie Hartman, COO and executive vice president of Saratoga Casino and Raceway. “We’re thrilled to collaborate with eBet and Batavia Downs to institute this exciting wagering option in Western New York and to further promote increased support and interest in New York racing.”

BataviaBets is a free service allowing customers who sign up for an account to wager on pari-mutuel events via the internet in addition to wagering via the telephone. Focused on servicing local residents and guests who support Batavia Downs and the Western Regional OTB network, this convenient option gives access to customers who would like to place a wager, watch the races, or check results.

“We are excited to work with an organization like Batavia Downs to extend their brand while maintaining access and control of their customer base,” said Mark Gregory, chairman of eBet. "We’re focused on delivering new channels and incremental revenues for regional racetracks like Batavia.”

June 12, 2012 - 2:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, horseracing.

Press release:

Officials at Western Regional Off-Track Betting (WROTB), the owner of Batavia Downs Casino, announced today wagering handle on the Belmont Stakes was the public benefit corporation’s third-best ever totaling more than $856,000. This is a 12-percent increase over last year. WROTB saw a 16-percent increase on the Kentucky Derby and a 3-percent increase on the Preakness from last year.

“The anticipation leading up to the race was the best in years,” said Todd Haight, OTB’s handicapper and the GM of Batavia Downs Racetrack. “Despite I’ll Have Another‘s late scratch on Friday afternoon, the publicity surrounding the race was enough to pique the public’s interest.”

The race was won by Union Rags, who ran down Paynter in the final furlong of the race. Union Rags will race next in the Travers’ Stakes at Saratoga Racecourse on Aug. 25.

Batavia Downs in owned and operated by Western Regional Off-Track Betting, a public benefit corporation. Municipalities that own Batavia Downs Casino include the 15 counties of Western New York as well as the cities of Buffalo and Rochester. The track is also home to Batavia Downs Casino, featuring 640 video slot machines. Batavia Downs Casino is located less than one mile from Thruway Exit 48 and is open daily from 8 to 4 a.m.

May 30, 2012 - 12:13pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports.

 

Press release:

Officials at Western Regional Off-Track (WROTB), the owner of Batavia Downs Casino announced that wagering handle on the Preakness Stakes was the public benefit corporation's third best ever totaling $920,192. This represented a 3-percent increase over last year. WROTB saw a 16-percent increase on the Kentucky Derby.

It’s been 34 years since "Affirmed" won the Triple Crown in 1978, and not since "Big Brown" in 2008 has there been a horse that has had a chance to win thoroughbred racings elusive Triple Crown. KY Derby and Preakness winner, I’ll Have Another will attempt to become only the 12th Triple Crown Winner in history.

“I’ll Have Another” has been most impressive, said Todd Haight, OTB’s handicapper and the GM of Batavia Downs Racetrack.

“Not only was he the first horse to ever win from post position 19 in the Derby, but he followed that with gutsy effort in the Preakness when he ran down favored 'Bodemeister' in the final yards," Haight said. "He’s made a believer out of me.”

Western OTB expects big crowds for the 144th Belmont Stakes at its OTB branches, EZ- Bet locations and at America’s oldest lighted harness track, Batavia Downs Casino, on June 9. All OTB branches will open at 11 a.m. on Belmont Stakes Day. Advance wagering on the final jewel of the Triple Crown begins on June 8.

Details on giveaways and radio events at local OTBs and Batavia Downs Casino will be available on visit www.westernotb.com the week of the race.

May 17, 2012 - 12:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business.

Press release:

Batavia Downs Casino is marking its seventh anniversary with a weekend celebration that includes a Preakness party and prize drawings.

Batavia Downs Casino opened at 10 a.m. on May 18, 2005 with just 586 machines. Now open 20 hours a day with 640 machines on site, the facility’s growth has meant more jobs and more money given back to the counties and cities that the public benefit corporation serves. With a 27 million dollar expansion also set to start, the facility’s staff is looking forward to the future.

“We are pleased with not only where we are but also with what’s on the horizon,“ said Michael Nolan, chief operating officer of Batavia Downs Casino and Western Regional Off-Track Betting.

"As a partner in this community we’ve created jobs for this region and will look to create even more with this expansion. Our monetary distributions to the counties and cities that we serve will also increase.”

Further details can be found at bataviadownscasino.com

May 7, 2012 - 12:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business, sports.

Press release:

Officials at Western Regional Off-Track (WROTB), owner of Batavia Downs Casino, announced today record handle on the 2012 Kentucky Derby and at the casino.

Through its 32 branches and 18 EZ-Bet locations, WROTB handled $1,913,108 on the Run for the Roses, a 16-percent increase over 2011, which was a record year. In addition, WROTB paid out $1.6 million in winning wagers, its most ever.

“We are very pleased with the results of the derby,” said William White, vice president of administration said. “We look forward to serving our customers' needs for the Preakness.”

“We are thrilled with the turnout for the derby,” said Todd Haight, OTB’s handicapper and the GM of Batavia Downs Racetrack. “It seems that the people of Western New York did their handicapping homework, too, as we paid out more winners than ever before.

"At the downs, people enjoyed meeting and greeting our Ambassador Thurman Thomas inside Grandstands Bar and Grille.”

Batavia Downs Casino recorded its biggest week ever with record revenues. New York State Lottery and the state education fund benefited by receiving over $520,000 when more than $12 Million in credits played were wagered through 640 slot machines.

Western OTB expects the excitement to continue with the Preakness Stakes on May 19 when "I’ll Have Another" tries to etch his name in the record books in the second jewel of the Triple Crown. All OTB branches will open at 10 a.m. on Preakness Day.

Batavia Downs in owned and operated by Western Regional Off-Track Betting, a public benefit corporation. Municipalities that own Batavia Downs Casino include: the cities of Buffalo, Batavia and Rochester, and these counties: Cattaraugus, Cayuga, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Niagara, Orleans, Oswego, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben, Wayne and Wyoming.

The track is also home to Batavia Downs Casino, featuring more than 600 video slot machines. Batavia Downs Casino is located less than one mile from Thruway Exit 48 and is open daily from 8 to 4 a.m.

May 3, 2012 - 12:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, Announcements, sports.

Press release:

The staff of Western Regional Off-Track Betting & Batavia Downs Casino are going through final preparations for Saturday’s Kentucky Derby festivities at each OTB and EZ Bet Location in the Western New York Area.  Batavia Downs Casino will host a radio remote and enjoy a visit from their Hall of Famer Thurman Thomas.  Locations of OTB Branches and EZ Bets can be found at www.westernotb.com.

“Staff members will be in each branch to help those unfamiliar with horse betting pick their horses for a chance to hit a big payday, “said OTB Director of Branch Operations, Sean Schiano.  “Prize drawings for Derby shirts and glasses will go on at every OTB Branch.  We’ll also be drawing a winner for a trip to the Belmont Stakes.”

Batavia Downs Casino will host its own Derby Party with a live radio remote from WGR Sports Radio 550 AM.  “We’re thrilled to have a sports talk show live on site as we count down the minutes to the Derby” said Ryan Hasenauer, Director of Marketing. “With the added presence of our ambassador Thurman Thomas, the atmosphere here will surely be one of excitement.”

Batavia Downs in owned and operated by Western Regional Off-Track Betting, a public benefit corporation. Municipalities that own Batavia Downs Casino include: City of Buffalo, Cattaraugus County, Cayuga County, Chautauqua County, Erie County, Genesee County, Livingston County, Monroe County, Niagara County, Orleans County, Oswego County, City of Rochester, Schuyler County, Seneca County, Steuben County, Wayne County, and Wyoming County. The track is also home to Batavia Downs Casino, featuring over 600 video slot machines. Batavia Downs Casino is located less than one mile from Thruway Exit 48 and is open daily from 8AM-4AM.

April 25, 2012 - 11:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business.

Press release:

Batavia Downs Casino is pleased to announce that its 27 million dollar expansion has been approved by the New York State Lottery. The expansion, which is slated to begin immediately, will consist of repairs to the roof, replacement of the facility’s neon sign with an energy-efficient LED one, and most notably, the facility’s second-story gaming floor will be brought down to ground level.

The project is expected to be one of the largest construction projects in Western New York this year.

“We are pleased to begin this long-anticipated project," said Mike Kane, president of Western Regional Off-Track Betting and Batavia Downs Casino. “The construction will create jobs both during the building of our new facility and inside the casino once the expansion is completed."

Since 2005, Batavia Downs Casino has contributed more than 107 million dollars to New York State Education through the lottery and more 71 million has been distributed to the 15 counties of Western New York and the two cities of Buffalo and Rochester.

"The expansion will add about 200 machines to the gaming floor, and we expect an increase in the yearly payments given back to the citizens of New York State," Kane said.

New restaurants will also be added to the facility.

“The Thurman Thomas Sports Bar will give local sports fans a new, unique place to cheer on their favorite teams while enjoying food, drink and local musical entertainment” said Director of Marketing Ryan Hasenauer.

The Tim Horton’s currently on the second floor would be expanded once it occupies its new space on the first floor. Batavia Downs Casino’s Ambassador will have his own space on-site as well.

April 10, 2012 - 10:01pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, crime.

Batavia PD is looking for the public's assistance in identifying the subject of this photo. It's related to an unspecified incident at Batavia Downs.

Anybody with information to share can contact Officer Marc Lawrence, mlawrence@batavianewyork.com.

April 9, 2012 - 1:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business.

Press release:

Batavia Downs Casino generated more than $16.99 million for education during the 2011 fiscal year (April 2011 to March 2012), according to the recently released data by the Division of Lottery. As part of Batavia Downs Casino’s ongoing support of New York education, 51 percent of Batavia Downs Casino's net win is given to the lottery to fund education.

“We’re proud to have contributed so much to New York State’s educational efforts,“ said Mike Kane, president of Batavia Downs Casino.

In 2011-2012, revenue generated by Batavia Downs Casino for education was equivalent to the annual salaries of approximately 245 teachers. With education budgets consistently tightening, this revenue will allow for students throughout New York State to continue to earn a high-quality public education. Since opening in 2005, Batavia Downs Casino has generated more than $115 million in education funding for New York.

More information on Batavia Downs Casino is available at www.bataviadownscasino.com and the full lottery report is available at www.nylottery.ny.gov.

Batavia Downs Casino is owned and operated by Western Regional Off-Track Betting, a public benefit corporation. Batavia Downs Casino is a member of the New York Gaming Association. The New York Gaming Association advocates for, and advances the interests of, the state’s nine racetrack casinos, located at harness and thoroughbred racing venues in all four corners of New York.

The association works in partnership with state government on long-term strategies to financially bolster education, create jobs, support agriculture, horseracing and breeding; and maximize economic revenues to the state that will benefit all New Yorkers.

April 4, 2012 - 7:36am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, schools, education, harness racing.

Press release:

Batavia Downs Casino will continue to enhance education, both of the sport of harness racing as well as classroom academics, by continuing its scholarship program for its third consecutive year.

The $7,500 one mile Dash for the Cash will be held on Saturday night, Sept. 15.

Five area high school seniors from the graduating class of 2013 will participate. The schools can use any criteria they wish to pick their students. This year’s participating high schools are Batavia, Notre Dame of Batavia, Elba, Pembroke and Alexander.

Kaley Falkowski of Batavia High School with professional Jim Mulcahy alongside won the inaugural event. Last year Elizabeth Shuknecht representing Elba High School with professional Jim Graham took top honors.

Beginning in August, the five participating students will attend at least five training sessions at the track with their professional to learn the safety and skills needed to drive a racehorse. Then between the fourth and fifth live harness races on Sept. 15, they will line up behind the starting gate and compete for scholarships checks of $3,000, $2,000, $1,200, $800 and $500.

“The enthusiasm in the crowd leading up to the race is amazing and it brings an entirely different demographic to the racetrack,” said Todd Haight, general manager of live racing. “These kids train very hard and definitely come away with a better understanding of our sport.”

Again the scholarship event is co-sponsored by the horsemen, breeders and owners of Western New York through the Harness Horse Breeders of New York State, the Western New York Harness Horsemen's Association, Buffalo Raceway and Batavia Downs Casino.

Batavia Downs Casino, America's oldest lighted harness track, opens for its 66th racing season on Monday, July 23, for 72 racing dates with a new post time of 6:25 p.m. Racing will be conducted on a Sunday afternoon, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday night basis in August. For more information, visit www.bataviadowns.com.

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