Wyoming Breeders Program
In a time when horse racing across the nation is suffering, Wyoming jumps up and leads the way with the new technology of historic racing terminals, one of the few states in the nation to permit the public to bet on historic races using self-service terminals at Off Track Betting sites throughout the Cowboy State. The revenue from these terminals has been used as a way to restore the viability of the state’s horse racing industry, as well as securing some economic stability for the state. In 2017, the combined total handle for the Historic Racing terminals throughout Wyoming exceeded over $420 million in handle, that of which over $4.2 million was generated back as revenue to cities and counties in Wyoming where the terminals where located, as well as over $1.6 million being supplemented as incentives for the horse breeders throughout the state.
Many changes have been seen in Wyoming racing over the past couple years, including in April 2017 the Wyoming Pari-Mutuel Commission was designated as the State Breed Registrar for Wyoming as well as the payee of the breeder’s award fund. There has been a rise in the number of weanlings, yearlings and broodmares accredited through the Wyoming Bred Program, proving the racing equine industry in Wyoming is resilient. The Wyoming Bred Breeders Award Program paid out an astonishing $1,723,458.62 in 2017 to 79 awardees that were eligible for owners, breeders and stallion owners of Accredited Wyoming Breds that ran throughout Wyoming, including 6 individuals earning triple digit numbers as high money earners through the program.
The top awardee was the late KC Carden of Sheridan, Wyoming, earning $176,404.26. Following close behind on the leader's list were Gerald Kaul of Sheridan, earning $167,092.89; John & Marie Whipp's Broken Bones Cattle Co. of Lander, Wyoming ($147,858.93); Dan & Carol Lee of Riverton, Wyoming ($112,202.91); Mike Lipp of Greybull, Wyoming ($110,793.63); and Pedro Mena-Evanston, Wyoming ($107,682.70).
Additionally, the revenue from simulcasting and historic horse racing has helped boost the live race days and horsemen’s purses for live horse racing events which is why the Wyoming Pari-Mutuel Commissioners approved 34 race dates to be conducted in 2018. Wyoming Downs will run 16 days total, Saturdays and Sundays, starting June 30 and running through August 19, 2018, at the Evanston, Wyoming racetrack. Wyoming Horse Racing, LLC will run 18 days total throughout the state. Energy Downs in Gillette, Wyoming will run nine days; June 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 22, 23, 24. Sweetwater Downs in Rock Springs will run nine days; August 24, 25, 26, 31, September 1, 2, 7, 8, 9.
With the resurrection of racing again in Wyoming the Commission strives to continue the protection of the wagering public and the health, safety and welfare of both human and equine participants with our regulatory processes, presence and integrity. After much discussion and consideration, the Wyoming Pari-Mutuel Commissioners are taking the first step in the rule change process to allow hair testing on the equine athletes.