Their operating company is in Chapter 11, the economy is forcing down betting, and nationwide attendance is falling -- so why is Lone Star Park still optimistic about having a good season?
G.W. Hail, vice president of the track, tells the Dallas Morning News that things aren't so bad for the Grand Prairie racetrack -- attendance was up last year and there is possible expansion opportunities into slot machines if Austin passes a new gambling bill.
We think it might be time to face facts. Though attendance numbers for the track were stronger last year, they weren't dealing as directly with a recession keeping folks out of work. Even those hoping to win big at the track will have less to bet with, just making the pot smaller overall.
Then there's the gambling bill. While the Texas legislature may pass it, the expansion of slot machines or even video poker might stop the blood loss...next year. There's no way the bill will be passed before the end of Lone Star's season, which starts Thursday. Plus, with the proposed gambling options, casino operations like WinStar could conceivably offer some gambling in the Lone Star State.
We don't want to see the track fail -- especially since we enjoy watching the races on warm summer nights -- but don't say we didn't warn you if the park shuts down after this season. Best way to help them out? Start placing your bets this Thursday.