- The Chicago Bears entered a purchase agreement for Arlington International Racecourse from Churchill Downs for $197 million in September.
- A Bears executive named Scott Hagel told the Chicago Tribune Wednesday that the Bears were not planning on continuing to offer horse racing at Arlington International Racecourse.
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. – The Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications for the Chicago Bears, Scott Hagel, said Wednesday that they are not interested in continuing horse racing at the 326-acre Arlington International Racecourse.
The Bears entered a purchase agreement for the racecourse from Churchill Downs in September for $197 million. The Bears are still evaluating the proposal, but hope to close the deal in 2022 or 2023.
“We are in the process of conducting our due diligence on the property and are not pursuing any horse racing opportunities on the site,” Hagel told the Chicago Tribune in an email.
The public comment from Hagel came after a report that a group of investors had proposed working with the Bears to continue offering gambling on horse racing at the venue; however, the group did not bid on the property when it was for sale, and they have not contacted the Bears in any official capacity.
Roy Arnold, CEO and President of Endeavor Properties (which was a finalist among bidders for the track) told the Chicago Tribune that Churchill Downs was asking for offers for the race track separately from the rest of the facility.
Arnold also said Endeavor valued the race track alone at $40 million, and that his team would be willing to purchase the Illinois property if the deal with the Bears fell through.