Blog: Prairie Meadows Preview

Trey Buck: We're in for a treat during the Challenge Championships

April 17, 2012

Q Racing Blog

We are in for a real treat …

My coworkers Kellye Baker and Matt Darby and I recently made a trip to Altoona, Iowa, for a site visit and meeting with the staff at Prairie Meadows Race Course and Casino in preparation for the 2012 Bank of America Racing Challenge Championships and AQHA Racing Conference. The event is October 23-27, and I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

Since I started at AQHA in 2000, we have been fortunate to hold the Challenge Championships at great facilities. Obviously, Los Alamitos and Lone Star Park have been great regular hosts along the way, and Sam Houston Race Park, Evangeline Downs and Fair Grounds have also left their special mark on this fall tradition. The previous (and hopefully future) host tracks have each brought something special of their own to the event. But no matter where we go, the racing and camaraderie has been superb. Each track has put on a great show and made the American Quarter Horse industry feel welcome. It was reinforced at our visit that Prairie Meadows will offer several new twists to the event that I know everyone in attendance will really enjoy.

First, Prairie Meadows just built a brand-new hotel that is beautiful: great lobby, great bar (not that I know firsthand), great location and great rooms that will make you feel very welcome. he room rates are excellent and, if rooms fill up the way they should, the whole hotel will be ours. How cool will that be?

Second, Prairie Meadows has a full casino – slots, tables, poker, simulcasting, just about everything. For those times when you aren’t watching the races or attending meetings, you can enjoy the casino with music and bars everywhere you turn around. You can go from the hotel to meeting rooms to casino to track and never step outside.

Third, for the first time, we will be in the Midwestern part of the United States. Beautiful geography, great weather and the greater-Des Moines area promises to have something for everyone – shopping, museums, restaurants and tours (and shuttles) hosted by the Iowa QHRA.

The staff at Prairie Meadows is already going out of its way to make this a great event and I hope you are planning to attend. Information on hotel rooms, schedules, meetings, tours, etc. will be posted soon at and also in upcoming issues of the Q-Racing Journal.

The week starts with a post-position draw on Tuesday for Iowa Quarter Horse Champions Night (Friday night’s racing) and ends Saturday with the Bank of America Challenge Championships. Don’t miss out on a chance to see great racing, have a lot of fun with outstanding hospitality, visit with horsemen and friends from across the industry and visit a true jewel of the horse racing industry – Prairie Meadows.

If we can ever help in any way please do not hesitate to contact the AQHA Racing office at (806) 376-4811 or by email ( or contact me at (806) 376-4811, Ext. 4360 or