Live horse racing returning to Colonial Downs after 5-year absence

Local News

NEW KENT, Va. (AP) — Live horse racing returns to Virginia today after a 5-year absence.

Colonial Downs, which has been dormant since 2014, is launching a 15-day race meeting that begins Thursday.

RELATED: Horses arrive ahead of much-anticipated reopening of Colonial Downs

The live racing follows an infusion of revenue from historical horse racing machines, which function like slot machines but technically base their payouts on the results of old horse races.

The Colonial Downs Group, which owns the racetrack, also operates the machines at three locations throughout the state under the name Rosie’s Gaming Emporium. In June, gamblers wagered more than $88 million at the machines. Wagering at the Colonial Downs site alone grew 10 percent from May to June.

RELATED: And they’re off! Live horse racing returning to Colonial Downs in 2019

Admission to the New Kent County racetrack, about halfway between Richmond and Williamsburg, will be free throughout the meet.

Stay with 8News for updates throughout the day.

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