Churchill Downs could gain third race meet

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - Churchill Downs is on the verge of gaining a third racing meet starting next year.

A panel of state horse racing regulators on Wednesday recommended that the home of the Kentucky Derby pick up September racing dates that traditionally have gone to Turfway Park in northern Kentucky.

The full Kentucky Horse Racing Commission is expected to vote on the all the 2013 racing dates statewide at its meeting next week.

Under the proposal, Turfway Park would have its live racing schedule cut nearly in half, from 81 days this year to 45 in 2013.

Turfway officials say the fewer race dates will allow the track to raise its daily purses in hopes of attracting more quality horses.

Churchill Downs track president Kevin Flanery says Churchill plans to use the September dates to expand into the national simulcast business.

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