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Churchill Wants To Experiment With Night Racing

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission will consider a request next week from Churchill Downs to allow three night racing dates.Track spokesperson John Asher says Churchill wants to experiment with the new schedule during its spring meet. It would be the first night racing in the track's 135 year history.He says Churchill Downs would set up artificial lighting for the dates."It's something we considered before, frankly. When we were putting together the plans for our $121 million renovation back in 2001, we originally had permanant lights in those plans, but in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks of 2001 and the economic conditions that followed, a few things were cut from those original plans and lights were one of them," Asher said.The evening dates, with first posts at 6:00pm, would fall on two Fridays, June 19 and 26, and Thursday, July 2nd, the start of the long Fourth of July holiday weekend.Asher says other tracks across the country, including Kentucky's Turfway Park, have had success with night racing. 

Rick Howlett was midday host and the host of LPM's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." He was with LPM from 2001-2023 and held many different titles, including Morning Edition host, Assignment Editor and Interim News Director. He died in August 2023. Read a remembrance of Rick here.