Friday, June 14, 2024

Colonial Downs Kicks-Off 2023 Season

(Katie Mihalakis)

NEW KENT — The iconic Churchill Downs is bringing live racing back to Colonial Downs Racetrack in New Kent County.

Weekend racing returns with top thoroughbred horses from around the country every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday with post time at 1:30 p.m., it said.

New this year are three high-level stakes races at Colonial Downs showcased as part of the new Colonial Downs Festival of Racing card on Saturday, Aug. 12 featuring the prestigious Arlington Million, Beverly D. and Secretariat Stakes.

Family activities and entertainment will be offered trackside every Saturday with a new family friendly zone. Each Saturday will feature a rotation of activities including a petting zoo, face painters, a bounce house and more.

There will be five giveaway days: Baseball Caps will be distributed Opening Day, Thursday, July 13 followed by Plush Horses Friday, July 28, T-Shirts on Friday, Aug. 11, Clear Stadium Bags on Friday, Aug. 28 and Water Bottles on Friday, Sept. 1.

“It’s an exciting time for Colonial Downs and New Kent County in 2023,” said Frank Hopf, Senior Director of Racing Operations. “The goal is to provide our guests a terrific experience and with the return of weekend racing, world class stakes races and new amenities, we are on the right path this season.”

Additionally, Colonial Downs is partnering with a new food and experience provider, Oak View Group (OVG), this season. Highlights will include an outdoor Grab & Go marketplace concept with vendors. The Jockey Club restaurant also has a new Chef’s Table buffet menu and the 1609 Club will feature a bistro-style menu.

“We are thrilled to join forces with Churchill Downs Inc. to increase our presence in horse racing and take the fan experience at Colonial Downs to new heights,” Ken Gaber, President, OVG Hospitality commented. “We believe fans deserve the very best, from food service offerings to efficient and quality service, and are pleased to welcome Colonial Downs into the OVG Hospitality family. We can’t wait to get started.”

(Katie Mihalakis)

Colonial Downs Racetrack in New Kent hosts live thoroughbred racing on two nationally renowned surfaces. The Secretariat Turf Course, the widest turf course in North America at 180 feet wide and on a 1 1/4-mile dirt track, is second in length only to Belmont Park.

The Colonial Downs Group is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated.

Tickets, full racing schedule and information are available at

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