PA Horse Racing Industry

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The Pennsylvania Horse Racing Industry has experienced significant benefits from the Race Horse Development and Gaming Act of 2004
(Act 71). All licensed casinos, including those not affiliated with a track, provide revenues to support both thoroughbred and harness horse racing activities in Pennsylvania. In addition to the construction of several new racetrack facilities, improvements have been made to grandstands, parking facilities, stables and racetrack surfaces at existing facilities.

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Once known as the “Sport of Kings”, horse
racing is a vital part of agriculture and the state of Pennsylvania’s economy. Each racing facility provides hundreds of jobs including, drivers, trainers, security, maintenance and other non-racing positions. In addition, local farmers and businesses benefit from the demand for feed, hay, straw, supplies and support services necessary to operate the thoroughbred and harness racing facilities across the State.






What is a Racino?

A racino is a combined racetrack and casino. According to Act 71, there are a total of seven Category 1 Casino Operator Licenses to be awarded to Pennsylvania’s thoroughbred and harness racing facilities. Purses at these racinos are subsidized by a percentage of slot machine revenue earned at all casinos including those not affiliated with a track. Larger purses attract better horses which helps to increase attendance of veteran horse players who prefer betting on quality horses, as they have better odds of consistency when placing wagers on races at the various PA tracks.


Pennsylvania Racinos

Thoroughbred Racing can be enjoyed at the following locations:

Bensalem, PA - Parx Casino and Racing
Erie, PA - Presque Isle Downs and Casino
Grantville, PA - Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course

Harness Racing can be enjoyed at these locations:

Chester, PA - Harrah’s Chester Casino and Racetrack
Washington, PA - The Meadows Racetrack and Casino
Wilkes-Barre, PA - Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs


A fourth harness racing track is planned for the following location:

New Castle, PA - Lawrence Downs Casino and Racing Resort


Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture

Established under the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission and Pennsylvania State Harness Racing Commission collectively have jurisdiction over all horse racing activities in the state as well as corporations engaged in these activities. Both commissions provide regulatory oversight to maintain
the integrity of racing in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.


Pennsylvania Horse Breeders


Pennsylvania has always been a great state for breeding and racing horses. With a percentage of slot machine revenue to fund state-of-the-art racing facilities and larger purses, Pennsylvania will continue to be a great place to raise, race and enjoy horses regardless of the breed or style of racing. The Race Horse Development and Gaming Act of 2004
(Act 71) also includes an additional incentive by offering larger purses
to race winners that were born and bred in PA.

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