Tag: indiana horse racing

Indiana Grand Racing & Casino will participate in the national movement PDJF Racing Across America Saturday, July 28 to help raise funds and awareness for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund. Tracks across North America participate in the celebration to show support of the worthy cause with numerous activities ranging from karaoke to specialty races. For the fifth straight year, Indiana Grand has combined the event with “Back to School” Night featuring activities geared toward younger racing fans that includes 16 backpack giveaways courtesy of the Indiana Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (HBPA).

Back to School, PDJF Night has become a popular staple on the summer racing events lineup at Indiana Grand. A total of 16 backpacks will be given away by the Indiana HBPA to help kick off the school year. The evening will also support the national “PDJF Racing Across America.”

Back to School, PDJF Night will kick off at 5:30 p.m. with the National Anthem provided by the Morristown High School Music Makers Show Choir. Activities begin at 6 p.m. with live racing getting underway at 6:05 p.m. Included in the lineup of free activities for kids includes the interactive live animal show Silly Safari, strolling characters, face painting, an inflatable and school supply giveaways. The Indiana HBPA will provide drawings after the first eight races on the card with two backpacks given away after each race.

In addition to the kids’ activities, Indiana Grand’s jockeys will participate in several contests during the night in support of PDJF. Several jockeys will get into a dunk tank from 6 – 7:30 p.m. to raise funds for PDJF, the organization that supports jockeys who can no longer ride due to injury or illness. Jockeys will also compete in a tug of war contest, pitting the Thoroughbred jockeys against the Quarter Horse jockeys after the second race outside the winner’s circle. The jockeys will also compete in a foot race from the starting gate after the fourth race.



Bruce Murphy loves horse racing and is always trying to find ways to enhance the sport. At the conclusion of last season, it was unclear who would take over the tack shop on the backstretch following the passing of “Big Jim” Duncan. So Murphy decided to buy the business and relocate to the permanent tack supply building on the backstretch. As a result, Backstretch Supplies emerged and with a little renovation, the business is thriving at Indiana Grand.


Backstretch Supplies is open every day except Sunday to provide a well-needed service to horsemen at Indiana Grand.

Murphy implemented some facility changes and created one big room to accommodate more inventory, offering everything from hoof packing and ointments to saddles, bridles and boots. A horse owner himself, Murphy understands the need for accessible supplies for those stabled on the backstretch and those shipping into race and has provided a great venue to accommodate all types of horsemen racing at Indiana Grand.

 Murphy has his finger on the pulse of the backstretch workers and wanted to reward those who work so hard to care for the horses and race them each time they head to the paddock. Therefore, he has created “Groom of the Week” for the month of June to provide incentive and payback to those who go the extra mile to prepare their horses for the races as well as work to make themselves presentable as the “best dressed” grooms while they are visible on the television feed that expands across the United States.


Indiana Grand Racing & Casino will host two job fair sessions to introduce employment opportunities for the upcoming 2018 racing season, which begins on Tuesday, April 17. The first session, focused on seasonal racing-related job openings, is set for Saturday, March 10 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. A general session, including job postings for casino and racing departments, is set for Monday, March 19 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Departments hiring seasonal team members include Food & Beverage, Mutuels, Trackside Maintenance, Equine EVS, Trackside Labor, and Trackside Security. Numerous positions are available for the 16th racing season of Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing.

Both job fair sessions will provide applicants the opportunity to meet with Indiana Grand personnel to discuss potential job opportunities. Representatives from many of the departments will be on hand to explain specific job duties and responsibilities.


Eddie Perez and Erica Murray represented the jockey colony at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino Thursday, Sept. 7 during the annual visit to Riley Hospital for Children in downtown Indianapolis. The trip is conducted by the jockeys with support from The Jockey’s Guild and Indiana Grand to bring awareness to Childhood Cancer Awareness Month during the month of September.


Eddie Perez and Erica Murray represented the jockey’s colony at the annual trip to Riley Hospital for Children in support of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month Thursday, Sept. 7.

Perez and Murray visited several children in various areas of Riley Hospital specializing in cancer treatments. Their first stop was on the cancer unit floor followed by a trip to the cancer clinic that provides outpatient services. The jockeys handed out horse racing coloring books and crayons along with goggles to the patients. They also autographed several items for the kids and stopped for photos along the way.

 Perez, a native of Mexico, is a 27-year veteran with nearly 2,500 career wins. He was attending his second straight visit to Riley in support of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Perez is currently ranked among the top 10 jockeys at Indiana Grand and recorded four wins on the program Wednesday, Sept. 6.

 “This is something I look forward to participating in every year,” said Perez. “I really enjoy visiting the kids. And, a couple of them really like horses, so it was nice to talk with them and tell them about our job as a jockey.”

 Murray, a native of Louisiana, is new to racing. The apprentice rider began her career at the age of 17 at Fair Grounds in her home state before venturing to the Midwest last summer. She has been very active all season with various charitable events with the jockeys and will celebrate her 20th birthday next week.


The highly anticipated opening of the new Centaur Equine Specialty Hospital has arrived. The facility, located adjacent to I-74 just minutes from Indiana Grand, started accepting patients in mid-February. Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine made the opening official with a building dedication Tuesday, April 25 at the hospital.

Members of Purdue University, VIPs, staff from the Centaur Equine Specialty Hospital and other honored guests were recognized in the winner’s circle following Race 6 Tuesday, April 25. Earlier in the day, Purdue held the official building dedication ceremony at the new hospital just minutes from Indiana Grand. (Photo by Linscott Photography)

More than 200 people attended the event, which featured several guest speakers, including Dean Willie Reed, Jim Brown, president and COO of Centaur Gaming, Senator Robert Jackman, a veterinarian who was instrumental in the development of the facility, and Dr. Timm Gudehus, lead surgeon at the hospital. The Indianapolis Mounted Police presented the colors during the National Anthem and Otto Thorwarth, aboard retired Quarter Horse racehorse Big John from the John McCreary Stable, represented Indiana Grand and Centaur Gaming as Garry Lauziere, Indiana Grand’s official bugler, played the “Call to Post” and “Back Home Again in Indiana.”


By Elaine Knepp, Race Marketing Intern

Shelby’s Express and Shelby’s Gifts are named after owner, Rod Ratcliff’s daughter, Shelby. This endearing name, along with the estimated 10 by 12 space, gives Shelby’s Express a quaint and comforting feeling.  While Shelby’s Express is located on the track side in the family pavilion, Shelby’s Gifts is located in the casino. These gift shops are the perfect place to buy souvenirs for those who are special or even to treat oneself during the summer and fall months.

Shelby's Express, located in the Family Pavilion in the lower level of the grandstand, offers a wide array of items customized for racing fans. The facility is open on Friday afternoons and Saturday evenings during live racing. (Photo by Elaine Knepp)

Shelby’s Express, located in the Family Pavilion in the lower level of the grandstand, offers a wide array of items customized for racing fans. The facility is open on Friday afternoons and Saturday evenings during live racing. (Photo by Elaine Knepp)

Both Shelby’s Express and Shelby’s Gifts provide a large array of merchandise. Both have their strengths.  While Shelby’s Express is equipped to please the horse racing side of the business, Shelby’s Gifts is tailored to care for the gaming side of Indiana Grand’s consumer family.  One may find t-shirts, cardigans, jewelry, coffee mugs, sun screen, stuffed animals, and much more in both locations.

Not only do the shops carry merchandise suitable for all, they carry quality and unique name brands. Swell Sunglasses and watches, made with bamboo, are only one example. The stores also carry popular names like Nike, Adidas, Capri Blue Candles, Mary Frances hand beaded hand bags, Finishing Touch Jewelry, and Indiana Grand logo merchandise.


A total of 39 jockeys will compete for their home countries in the third annual World Jockey Challenge slated for Saturday, June 25 at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino. The jockeys will compete in their regularly scheduled races with hopes of bringing in accumulative points for their home countries.

There are 10 countries represented in this year’s event, including Brazil, Panama, Cuba, Peru, Mexico, Italy, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Ireland and the United States. Mexico has the biggest representation with 17 riders hailing from that country followed by the United States, which has 10 jockeys on the team. Several of the countries only have one representative, but last year’s event was won by Panama, which only had two jockeys Albin Jimenez and Abel Lezcano who combined for three wins on the card and several seconds and thirds. The United States team was the inaugural winner in 2014.

The final outcome of the World Jockey Challenge is all dependent on finishes during the night, with first place receiving 10 points, second place awarded five points, third place pulling in three points and fourth place granted one point. One of the differences in this year’s contest is the number of races and the largest number of jockeys to compete on the International Fest card. Also, four of the 12 races are Quarter Horse races programmed as the last four races, which is unique for the event.


By Grant Scharton, Director of Communications

Indiana Grand Racing & Casino announced Monday the addition of six concerts to their free ‘Legends of Entertainment’ concert series. The monthly free concerts will take place at the casino’s Center Bar stage through November. All concerts are open to the public ages 21 years or older.


In early 1965 as the “British invasion” dominated the American music scene, two rockers from Long Island, Steve Boone and Joe Butler, teamed up with two folk singers from Greenwich Village, John Sebastian and Zal Yanovsky, to form The Lovin’ Spoonful and go on to record and perform some of the songs that would dominate the charts throughout the mid-60s era. Combining the best of folk music and rock and roll, with a touch of country thrown in, The Lovin’ Spoonful is best known for such hits as “Do You Believe in Magic,” “Daydream,” “You Didn’t Have to be So Nice,” and the summer anthem, “Summer in the City.” On March 6, 2000 after more than three decades performing and touring, The Lovin’ Spoonful reached a milestone as they were officially inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame.

 California-based quartet, All-4-One, marked their place in the music industry in the mid-90s as premier balladeers. Their hit single, “I Swear,” claimed the billboard “Hot 100” #1 spot for 11 consecutive weeks, while sales sky rocketed to hold the #1 selling single status in 1994 and third most successful single of the rock era. “I Swear” still holds a spot on the Billboard’s “Hot 100” as one of the most successful singles of all time and has been named by ASCAP as one of the greatest love songs of the 20th Century. Additionally, All-4-One’s landmark album produced the hit “I Can Love You Like That,” a mid-tempo ballad that also hit the Top 5 on the Billboard “Hot 100.” To date the band has sold more than 20 million records worldwide, won a series of awards including a Grammy, an American Music Award, a Blockbuster Award, countless international awards, and completed multiple major world tours. All-4-One continues to tour around the world with the same four original members and a collection of hit songs under their belt.


Indiana Grand Racing & Casino will hold its first turf races of the 2015 racing season next week. The first turf races were scheduled for Friday, May 15 and Saturday, May 16, but due to heavy rains in the area, the races were moved off the turf. Three races, the fourth, sixth and eighth, are scheduled for the turf course on the Tuesday, May 19 racing program.


Roy Smith, track superintendent at Indiana Grand, leads the team that has been working diligently on both the turf and dirt courses at Indiana Grand this season.

Roy Smith, track superintendent at Indiana Grand, leads the team that has been working diligently on both the turf and dirt courses at Indiana Grand this season.

Roy Smith, track superintendent, and his crew have been working diligently on the turf course in preparation for the first races of the season. They began in early spring by conducting a first overseeding of Kentucky Bluegrass on the seven-eighths mile grass course. To help the new seed take root, Smith implemented new geothermal blankets over the course, a quarter mile at a time, to promote early turf growth. When the blankets were moved to a different section of the turf course, the vibrant green color of grass has been very evident over the past two months.

“The turf blankets are new to Indiana Grand this year and we have enough to cover 1,000 feet at a time,” said Smith. “We left it on a section at a time and then relocated it to another section of the turf course after a few days. You could see a big difference in the color of the grass when we moved the geothermal blankets.”


Diane Bellamy and her husband, Clarence, make a yearly trip to Indiana Grand Racing & Casino to watch and wager on the Kentucky Derby. This year, the trip for the retired couple got a little sweeter as Bellamy was one of three individuals drawn for the $1,000 Megabet promotion at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino, selecting the winning horse of the Kentucky Derby and going home $3,900 richer.

Three names were drawn as contestants for the Kentucky Derby Megabet Drawing. Bellamy, who resides in Indianapolis, was the first name drawn followed by John Mattingly of Santa Claus, Ind. and Jeremy Sevier of Columbus, Ind. Each contestant was granted a $1,000 win wager on the Kentucky Derby and could select any horse they wanted in the 18-horse field. Mattingly and Sevier both chose Dortmund. However, Bellamy chose American Pharoah trained by Bob Baffert and cashed her win wager for a $3,900 payout.

“I let my husband (Clarence) pick the horse for me,” said Bellamy. “We only come out to the races once a year, but we come to the casino quite a bit. We have been here for the Kentucky Derby the past few years and it’s always a lot of fun. We brought six friends with us this year and they are having a ball. Winning this just made it even better.”

Bellamy’s cheering section watched as American Pharoah, ridden by Victor Espinosa, was within striking distance on the outside at the top of the stretch. The stretch drive turned into a three-horse battle between Dortmund along the inside and Firing Line between horses, but American Pharoah got the edge at the end and won by one length, making Bellamy and her friends a very happy bunch.