Horse racing season approved for Running Aces Casino in 2021

Running Aces Casino, Hotel and Racetrack, located in Columbus, Minnesota, is preparing for the 2021 horse racing season with some changes coming.

The approval for the 2021 season was made official in December. Opening day is scheduled for May 16, with the season running through Sept. 18. The number of race dates has increased to 55 days, which is an additional five days from 2020. One of the major changes will be Saturday races being moved to Thursdays. Race days will typically be every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday with a first race starting at 6:05 p.m., according to Running Aces.

Additionally, another modification includes no racing on the Fourth of July. Instead, racing will take place July 5. The Minnesota Night of Champions will close out the season in style on Sept. 18, with consolation events happening the night before.

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"Changing our Saturday races to Thursday will help us stand out and not compete with other tracks around the country, and attract more fans on our simulcast signal. In addition, we will no longer compete with our other spring and summer weekend activities and events," Running Aces Director of Marketing Aaron Bedessem said. "It will also benefit our seasonal race staff by not having to work every weekend. This makes it easier to attract employees."

The 2020 race season was met with many challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the purses for the 2021 season reflect only a slight reduction from the 2020 season.

Admission remains free for those attending during race season. For more information, click here.