Horse racing returns to Colonial Downs after pandemic closes in 2020
RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – Horse racing returned to Colonial Downs on Monday a year after being halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
There was a lot of excitement on the New Kent track for opening day. A crowd of around 2,000 watched the race live from the stands.
For fans like Jeff Rouse from Suffolk, there are many fond memories at Colonial Downs.
“I worked here on opening day 15 or 16 years ago,” he said, adding that it was a great place. “This is a really great track for owners, trainers, jockeys, horses.”
Tom Kelly from Yorktown got the whole family out. He said: “On opening day they have good coaches, good sports people, it’s a good day to bring the family and have a good day.”
Until September 1, spectators can watch the action, place their bets and bet on their luck.
A big difference this season: no races on weekends. Post time is 1:45 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
John Marshall, executive vice president of operations at Colonial Downs Group, calls it a morning run, a schedule they had to declare in November while Virginia was still on lockdown.
“We went for the start of the week, the start of the day to try to temper the live attendance,” he said.
Admission is free and you can expect to see around nine races each day.
For more information, in particular to see the 2021 race calendar, visit the Colonial Downs website.