Turf Paradise Horse Racing Track in Arizona
It all started in 1954 when a businessman by the name of Walter Cluer bought 1,400 acres of barren desert and set about realising his dream of building a first-class race track in Phoenix. Cluer was a millwork founder, a manufacturer and a horse owner, but even though he’d enjoyed so much success in other fields, many thought his latest project was badly timed and destined to fail. They argued that the property was 25 miles from downtown Phoenix and that the only access to the track would be badly maintained dirt roads. Still, Cluer forged stubbornly ahead and just two years later, Turf Paradise racetrack opened it’s doors to the public. The track was a success and Cluer remained head of the track for nearly 25 years.
The first major renovations took place in 1980 when Turf Paradise came under new management. The new owner, Herb Owens, added a seven-furlong infield turf course with a 1 1/8 mile chute to the existing one-mile oval circuit. Owens also enlarged the clubhouse and added a Turf Club, a penthouse-like Directors’ Suite and an outdoor patio. The tracks next owner, Robert Walker, added off-track betting. At the time the track had managed to accumulate significant debt and the move to off-track gambling proved to be just what was needed to help carry the track through. Numerous other renovations have been made – perhaps the most notable being the addition of an equine swimming pool in the stable area. This pool is utilized by more than 2,200 thoroughbreds who are in need of equine therapy. The pool cost $125,000 to install and contains 140,000 gallons of water. It continues to draw a number of racehorses in need of this form of gentle therapy.
Today Turf Paradise truly is a horse racing paradise. It offers two great tracks, plenty of grandstand seating, a family picnic area, 75 betting carrels, a VIP luxury dining room known as the Turf Club, a stunning clubhouse, a 300 person terrace and a Directors’ Suite all in picturesque surrounds. The course facilities can be hired out for special occasions and provide a truly stunning venue for weddings, meetings, anniversary parties, birthday parties and other special occasions. Parking is generally free unless you opt for valet parking. Turf Paradise’s racing season starts in October and ends in May the following year. So for unbeatable live horse racing, venues with a touch of class, and hi-tech wagering, Turf Paradise is Arizona’s racetrack of choice.