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Kentucky Horse Racing Commission approves historical track license

ASHLAND, Ky. — The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission awarded its ninth and final license to a new facility with plans to re-introduce quarter horse racing to the Bluegrass state. Revolutionary Racing will build in Ashland, Kentucky, and feature an American quarter horse “sprint racing” track and a historical horse racing (HHR) facility.

Quarter horse racing has deep roots in Kentucky with a history dating back to the earliest days of Daniel Boone’s “Kentucky Territory.” A historical marker near Lexington indicates that in 1780, pioneers established the starting point of the first race path and extends southward one-quarter mile. In 1988, there were two race tracks with quarter horse racing. It has been three decades since quarter horse racing took place in Kentucky.

Revolutionary Racing obtained the last available racing license in Kentucky. The application included a request to build a quarter horse race track in Boyd County. Phase one includes the construction of the sprint race track, HHR facility, paddock with offices and walking ring, two racing barns with 88 stalls each, a test barn, and parking. The construction project is expected to be completed in 2024.

The American Quarter Horse excels at sprinting short distances, namely the quarter mile or less. According to the Kentucky Quarter Horse Association, there are 30,000 registered quarter horses in Kentucky in 2021 owned by more than 10,000 residents.

In 2021, The Kentucky House of Representatives passed a resolution in support of the quarter horse industry in the commonwealth, recommending that at least one race track license be awarded or held explicitly for quarter horse sprint racing.

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