Minnesota Racing Commission

Minnesota Racing Commission

Steve May has been named MRC executive director.

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Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz has appointed Steve May of Georgetown, Kentucky, as the next executive director of the Minnesota Racing Commission.

May will assume his new duties in late April. He succeeds Tom DiPasquale, who retired in February after serving as director since 2013.

May is the Director of Pari-Mutuel Wagering and Compliance for the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. Previously, he was vice president and business manager of the Association of Racing Commissioners International, a national association that represents pari-mutuel racing regulators in most racing states, including Minnesota. May’s educational background includes bachelor and master degrees, including an MBA.

Commission chairman Jim Lane congratulated Gov. Walz on his appointment of a respected, nationally known racing and wagering industry official to serve as director at a critical time for horse racing in Minnesota and the nation.

“Steve May has had broad background in racing and pari-mutuel operations and is well suited by education and experience to lead the fine commission staff assembled here in Minnesota by his predecessor,” said Lane.

Public health emergencies have cast uncertainty over horse racing throughout the U.S. and Canada. Racing continues in some states, such as in California, Arkansas, and Florida, but without fans in the stands or at the betting windows. Last week both Canterbury Park and Running Aces Casino, Hotel, and Racetrack in closed their card clubs and race books for indefinite periods.

Uncertainty also surrounds opening of the stable areas for training and 2020 race meetings. Canterbury Park had planned to open its stable area to horsemen in mid-April but informed the Commission last week that it did not now anticipate opening to horsemen until May 1, at the earliest, and perhaps later. Racing dates at Running Aces are also on hold.

Chairman Lane cautioned that the much anticipated opening of live racing in Minnesota in mid-May is likely to be postponed for several weeks, perhaps longer, if health emergencies persist.

"We simply don’t know what the future of this pandemic holds for our sport,” said Lane. “At least for now, we must remain vigilant and exercise common sense by following applicable CDC and Minnesota Department of Health guidelines to protect ourselves and families, horsemen, racetrack and card club customers, and commission and racing association employees. As we’re being reminded daily, ‘we’re all in this together’."

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