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  I've Seen Fire, I've Seen Rain  !     

Fair GroundsaFair Grounds Logo

Plenty of history here, The Fair Grounds was one of the first racetracks in North America. It enjoyed the benefit of winter racing for many years and was also rebuilt from the ashes of devastating fires that twice leveled the facility. Oddly enough its purse structure was only rated a 9 but now being a Racino and under the Churchill Downs banner that number has risen to 43.

 The original site of the Fairgrounds dates back to 1852 which preceded both the Civil War and Saratoga Race Course. With that the track has survived the Civil War, the fires, and Hurricane Katrina.

Fair GroundsaGentilly Road Gates

 In 2011 The Fairgrounds once again conducted both quarter horse and thoroughbred meets. The thoroughbreds starting on their traditional Thanksgiving Day opening. Rising female star Rosie Napravnik, ran away with top rider honors. If you drive into the Gentilly Road entrance you will pass through the ornate iron gates that have guarded the track for over a century.  

Since the sixties the track has transformed from an open air grandstand to a glass enclosed climate controlled facility which now includes a casino. The only chance I had to visit The Fair Grounds was on a dark-day, it also was a dark day outside the track, raining cats and dogs. The casino seemed a little small, but the rest of the facility and track was major league. Since that time there has been grumbling from horseman that the parent company Churchill Downs, has been ignoring their track and putting all the profits into the home track in Louisville.