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dressappy
Sep. 16, 2009, 08:11 AM
I just saw that Magna sold a few of their racetracks. I was wondering what the status of Pimlico? Are they still selling it? Just curious haven't heard anything about it since the Preakness was held. :confused: Really hope they can keep the race in Maryland.

Glimmerglass
Sep. 16, 2009, 09:31 AM
Short answer: it's not on the market.

Long answer: State government officials say the Preakness will always remain in Maryland.

Magna has sold - or is in the final stages of selling - Thistledown and Remington Park. Santa Anita was taken off the market for now after "disappointing" bids were made far below what they expected. Lone Star Park also was pulled too.

Not formally on the market but Magna will also review bids:


Magna officials have said in the past that the company would take private offers for the company's other properties, including Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course in Maryland; Gulfstream Park and Palm Meadows training center in Florida; and Golden Gate Fields in Northern California.

As for Maryland keeping the Preakness: an older article Wash Times 4-10-09 "Senate panel OKs eminent domain bill for Preakness" (http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/apr/10/senate-panel-oks-eminent-domain-bill/)


The Senate Budget and Taxation Committee voted 11-4 in favor of the legislation, which will allow the state to either purchase or exercise eminent domain over the rights to the Preakness and the race track on which it is run, the Pimlico Race Course. The bill would also extend the state's eminent domain authority over Laurel Park and the Bowie Race Course Training Center.

Good luck with that one ;) I don't see it holding up to a legal challenge and I don't think most Maryland citizens want to be the horse racing business. They may like the idea of keeping the Preakness but that's just 1 day of racing.

Glimmerglass
Sep. 16, 2009, 05:07 PM
Correction on Lone Star Park - it looks like it is "almost sold" for $27M to a holding controlled by Chickasaw Nation (http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/52564/magna-sells-two-tracks-and-makes-a-third-deal) - Global Gaming Solutions RP LLC.


According to documents filed Sept. 14 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware, Global Gaming Solutions also will pay for Lone Star Park. John Elliott, the CEO of Global Gaming Solutions, said the Ada-based tribe intends to run the track without disruption.

Texas law states majority ownership of a racing license must be held by Texas residents, so Global Gaming would have a minority ownership interest in the license. The licensing process could take six months.

The Chickasaw Nation has made no secret of its interest in buying both Remington Park and Lone Star Park.

"We always approached it from the standpoint that we wanted both of them and saw synergies between them," Elliott told the Associated Press. "We see enormous entertainment value in both these tracks."

Unlike Remington Park, which has a casino, Texas law does not allow for that sort of gambling at racetracks. Elliott said the tribe would like to see that changed.

Chickasaw Nation of Ada, OK (http://www.chickasaw.net/), the thirteenth largest federally recognized tribe in the United States.

Glimmerglass
Oct. 13, 2009, 09:17 PM
Looks like January 2010 is when Magna Entertainment will - if the court approves - auction off Pimlico and Laurel Park. There will be a condition afixed to Pimlico (http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/horse-racing/bal-md.magna13oct13,0,6634341.story) that the Preakness Stakes must remain in Maryland. I'm not entirely sure that mandate would really hold up to a challenge if the winning bidder ultimately themselves went bankrupt, too.


The company withdrew a proposal to auction the tracks this summer, and documents filed with the bankruptcy court Friday offered a new timeline for a potential sale.

In asking for a Jan. 8 auction date Magna also asked for a Nov. 2 deadline for potential buyers to submit bids. That would allow any potential sale to comply with the contested state law, which gives the government 60 days to review a deal and step in with its own purchase of the Preakness. In its court papers, Magna said it reserves the right to contest the law but proposed the time frame in the spirit of compliance.


Baltimore developer David S. Cordish has said his company is interested in the assets. Baltimore Orioles owner Peter G. Angelos also has said he and his family want to help Maryland keep the Preakness.

Magna's plan requires bidders to post a 10 percent deposit and provide evidence that they have the money to complete the deal.

The latter would knock out perennial tire-kicker Halsey Minor who seems to always appears like Keyser Soze in on-line blogs when his name is mentioned (http://www.horseraceinsider.com/blog.php/west-coast-wash/comments/10062009-misnamed-at-birth/#comments).

LexInVA
Oct. 15, 2009, 12:00 PM
Pimlico is on the block now.

Laurierace
Oct. 15, 2009, 07:48 PM
Call me an optomist but I can't see how we have anywhere to go but up. Here's hoping the sale this January will mark a new beginning as we head towards a return to relevance. I hear they are going to make the new owner pinky swear to keep the Pimlico open and the Preakness in MD!

Acertainsmile
Oct. 15, 2009, 09:54 PM
Well who could ever doubt a pinky swear?

Glimmerglass
Oct. 21, 2009, 09:35 AM
Oct 21, 2009 B'more Sun: "Magna's auction concerns state racing group" (http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/horse-racing/bal-sp.racing21oct21,0,4475147.story)

Maryland Racing Commission would prefer the buyer acquire all three tracks - Pimilco, Laurel and Bowie - however they don't have as much weight as you'd think.


Asked whether lack of commission approval would void the bankruptcy sale, senior assistant attorney general Bruce C. Spizler said it would all depend on the specifics of the court order.

"No one could force anyone to conduct racing," Spizler said. "So if someone purchased the racetrack and decided not to conduct racing but to develop the property, that would be within their prerogative, although I have not seen the order of the court, yet it sounds like the terms of the bidding will include the continuation of conducting the Preakness here.

"If that's the case, then it would seem the person would have to continue to conduct racing, at least to some extent, at Pimlico."

Bids for the properties must be received by Nov. 2 and released to the state Dec. 7. The state then has 60 days to review the bids. The auction is set for Jan. 8.

As an aside - Lone Star Park which looked like a done deal with the Native American group for $27 million has been trumped by Penn National Gaming for $40 million (http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20091019-710313.html).

Acertainsmile
Oct. 21, 2009, 04:50 PM
Scary time for Maryland horsemen...I guess this is where Pimlico's "Boutique" meet might come into play?

Glimmerglass
Nov. 3, 2009, 09:51 AM
Not very encouraging with the initial bidding - and those on the sidelines. First round bids were submitted Monday Nov 2nd: Baltimore Sun 11-3-09 "Auction of Laurel Park, Pimlico gets under way" (http://www.baltimoresun.com/business/bal-bz.magna03nov03,0,4891086.story)


Pikesville shopping center developer Carl Verstandig said Monday that he has entered into an agreement with two unidentified bidders to buy the excess land surrounding Pimlico and Laurel Park for $38 million if either one emerges as the winner. Verstandig is interested in transforming the land at Pimlico into a mix of offices, retail shops and restaurants, while developing Laurel Park's land into a retail center.

Verstandig said it made sense for him to partner with the two potential bidders because of the state's right to outbid the highest bidder.

"At the end of the day, if either one of the groups get the assets, I end up with what I want, and they would run the tracks," he said.

Former owner - and frankly a culprit who has watched the train wreck of Maryland Racing go down the tubes without taking action - the De Francis family is not bidding for now.