Emerald Downs Concludes Healthy 2020 Season


Emerald Downs concluded its 38-day 2020 racing season with record average daily handle. The track’s 25th season was conducted with strict COVID protocols and without spectators.

Daily wagering averaged $1,796,475, a 61% increase over last year’s average. Most of the wagering came from internet and mobile site customers located throughout the United States and Canada.

Track president Phil Ziegler reported there were no positive COVID cases, “We want to thank all our stakeholders for working together safely. We had unprecedented challenges not only at the track but in all aspects of our lives. We were the first professional sport to return in the state of Washington and through everyone’s efforts we were able to put on a healthy and successful meet”

Good health was not limited to the human participants. Over the 391 races conducted there were zero catastrophic breakdowns from the 2,895 starters.

On the track accomplishments included trainer Blaine Wright winning his first Longacres Mile with Anothertwistafate, Frank Lucarelli winning his 7th training title with 42 wins and Alex Cruz taking the jockey title with 72 wins in his first season at Emerald Downs.

2020 Season Timeline

• Barn area and training begins February 1. Opening Day scheduled for April 18.

• Stay at Home order issued on March 16. Only essential workers permitted in stable area as training and horse care continued. Opening Day delayed indefinitely.

• Approvals to run live racing (and other professional sports) posted by Governor’s office on June 5.

• Washington Horse Racing Commission approves revised dates. Opening Day set for June 24 with racing Wednesdays and Thursdays without fans.

• June 24 – Opening Day. Horse Racing becomes the first professional sport to return in Washington.

• Longacres Mile is run on Thursday September 10th marking the first weekday running and the first time run under the lights.

• The 38 Day Race Meet concludes on Thursday, October 29.

Emerald Downs is located right off Highway 167 in Auburn, WA.