Lincoln Gets New Track

Plans to build a new horse racing track on the outskirts of Lincoln are being looked at, at the present time. In 1935, the state of Nebraska became the first state to offer pari-mutuel wagering and horse racing has been a part of Lincoln for many years. Unfortunately, Nebraska has not followed in the footsteps of other states by legalizing other forms of gambling at its racecourses, and even though there is still a loyal fan base and attendance at the present racecourse, racing has not attracted new interest and it is feared that without the new development, horse racing in Lincoln might face extinction.

The proposed racing track will become known as the Nebraska Horse Park and will be located on the grounds adjoining the Event Centre, which belongs to the University of Nebraska. It will become more than just a horse racing facility, but a centre for equine research, a general research facility and offer various attractions, accommodation and a Business Park, to attract more members of the public, and in doing so, promote horse racing and equine development.

Supporting the development and new facility are Sunrise EquiTherapy, Lancaster County Officials, Lancaster Event Center, the NHBPA, 2015 Vision, the City of Lincoln and the UNL. Presenting the proposal to the Legislature’s General Affairs Committee, a few lawmakers wanted additional information, such as who was going to fund the $50 million project, as these details have not yet been confirmed.

Over and above the one mile track, the Nebraska Horse Park will offer an indoor and outdoor horse riding centre to allow for various equine discipline events to be hosted here, stables, horse riding trails, camping grounds, businesses, shopping facilities, restaurants, hotels and ample parking. Sunrise EquiTherapy hopes to expand their operations at the centre from seasonal to full time, as they are dedicated to assisting the mentally and physically disabled through working with horses.

The Nebraska Horse Park will be completed by 2012 and hopes to boost the horse racing industry of Nebraska, as well as equine related sports and research. It would also generate a greater income and boost the economy of Lincoln. Everyone in the industry and especially the city of Lincoln are looking forward to the new state of the art facility and the hope it brings.