Fair Grounds Picks
Choose a Featured Package
Select one of the below packages to gain access to Daily Horse Picks premium picks for every race, and every track along with our expert handicapping tools.
Daily - $4.99
All tracks, all picks for 1 day
Track bias analyzer
Weekly - $9.99
All tracks, all picks for 7 days
Track bias analyzer
Monthly - $29.99
All tracks, all picks for 30 days
Track bias analyzer
Ultimate - $299.99
All tracks, all picks for 365 days
Track bias analyzer
About Fair Grounds
Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots is located in New Orleans and is the third-oldest racetrack in North America. It is located in the mid-city area and is approximately 20 miles from New Orleans International Airport.
The track regularly hosts thoroughbred racing and also boasts a casino and slots area. It is currently operated by the Churchill Downs Louisiana Horse racing Company, and they have been responsible for the day-to-day running of the venue since 2004. The track is partnered with Arlington Park, which is located in Arlington Heights, Ill.
The track also offers simulcasting, which is available all year round at Fair Grounds. This has been in place since 2008.
The configuration of the Fair Grounds track is fairly straightforward, with a one-mile dirt track sitting alongside a seven-furlong oval turf course. Other facilities at the track include the clubhouse and the grandstand.
The track also holds a number of unrelated events throughout the course of the year, with the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival traditionally staged here.
The most high-profile race to be staged at the track is the Louisiana Derby, which is a Grade II event and is held in late March. The current prize purse stands at $1 million.
Fair Grounds History
The origins of live racing in the region date back to 1838 when "Louisiana Race Course" was established by Bernard D Marigny, Henry Augustine Taylor, and Jenny Cameron. The first contest was called "The Creole Purse" and came with a prize of $1,000 (a very decent amount at the time). Although some events did take place the following year, it wasn't until 1852 that the course enjoyed a second opening.
The track was using the moniker "UnionRace Course" and held live race-days for five years until closing due to competition from a nearby venue. Two years later, the track renamed itself "Creole Racecourse" before finally settling on "FairGrounds" in 1863.
In 1871, the "Louisiana Jockey Club" was formed, and they opted to hold meetings at the track. The first official race-day was in 1872.
"The Crescent City Jockey Club" was established in 1892 and ran a winter card (December-April) each year until the beginning of the next century. Racing was banned in the state between 1908 and 1915.
In 1919, the track suffered another setback with the grandstand catching fire. However, the blaze was quickly dampened, and live racing continued unaffected by the incident.
The track was on the verge of destruction in the early 1940s before being saved by a group of investors. It continued to race after the conclusion of World War II.
The turf course was installed in 1981, and this allowed a greater number of races to be staged at Fair Grounds. It also helped attract a decent caliber of competitor to the track.
Another fire broke out in 1993, destroying theGrandstand. Although the impact was significant, the track continued to race using temporary facilities. The structure officially re-opened in 1997 at the cost of $27 million. It opened to the public on Thanksgiving Day.
Shortly after being sold to the Churchill Downs Louisiana Racing Company, the track began to allow race-goers to enjoy affiliated off-track betting and video poker facilities. In 2005, Fair Grounds was damaged by Hurricane Katrina and wasn't able to re-open until November 2006.
Famous names to have competed at the track include Tippity Witchet, Black Gold and Pan Zareta. The latter is buried in the infield part of the venue.
Fair Grounds Track Configuration and Bias
The turf course at Fair Grounds has always been a handicapper's dream. It has deep roots and differs from the majority of other surfaces in North America. Therefore, horses with previous winning format the track tend to replicate that success time and time again. It is advised to watch out for repeat winners on the grass at this unique track.
On the main track, there is a short run until the first turn, which doesn't necessarily allow rail runners to get sufficient speed going into the bend. Therefore, late speed is ideal. The long stretch is ideal for closers, and those who leave it until the final furlong tend to prevail more often at Fair Grounds.
It is also worth noting that the track has a unique drainage system, which does benefit horses on the inside rail following a substantial downpour in the Louisiana region.
Winning Post Position
According to the stats for 2018-19, sprint races were dominated by horses given an inside draw. Stall 1 had 18.9 percent of winners, while 16.3 percent began the race in stall 2. Stalls 6 and 7 posted the weakest results and were responsible for just 18 percent of winners combined. Just two of the 21 runners who were posted in stall 12 entered the winner's enclosure, while none of the three runners in stall 14 made an impact.
Races held over the distance (one mile or greater) produced a fairly even spread. Stalls 1 and 2 were responsible for 15 percent of winners each, with 14 percent of successful horses being drawn install 5. Stalls 8-14 all produced single-figure returns, with stall 10responsible for just 10 percent of all winners in these types of contests.
On the turf track, there was a notable decline in the results of stall 4. Just 6.5 percent of winners came from this position.Once again, the inside posts were slightly more profitable, posting 14 percent of winners each. Stalls 5-7 were moderately productive, with figures of 11.6,10.5 and 12.3 percent, respectively. None of the nine runners posted in stall 14 were successful.
Fair Grounds Racing Season
Fair Grounds traditionally holds one meet per year, which runs from late November through to early March. The first day tends to take place on Thanksgiving Day. The majority of the stakes races are held towards the end of the meet, with the Louisiana Derby taking place in March, and it is regarded as a major prep race for the prestigious Kentucky Derby.
● Louisiana Derby
● Fair Grounds Oaks
● New Orleans Handicap
● Risen Star Stakes
● Rachel Alexandra Stakes
● Mervin H Muniz Jr MemorialHandicap
● Lecomte Stakes
● Fair Grounds Handicap
● Mineshaft Handicap
● Colonel E.R Bradley Handicap
Other notable races:
● Crescent City Oaks
● Crescent City Derby
● Bayou Handicap
● Louisiana Champions Day Classic
● Sugar Bowl Stakes
● Tenacious Stakes
Fair Grounds Address
1751 Gentilly BoulevardNew Orleans, LA 70152
Fair Grounds Best Jockeys and Trainers
There are a number of top horsemen who operate on a regular basis in Louisiana. With a number of tracks in the region, there are several opportunities to produce winners in the state.
There are plenty of jockeys who ride this track on a regular basis and regularly enter the winner's enclosure. With its unique turf track, Fair Grounds is the perfect venue for local riders to excel.
|Jockey||Races||Win Rate||Place Rate||Show Rate|
|Hernandez Brian Joseph||305||24.92%||39.34%||56.07%|
|Hernandez Colby J||366||15.30%||23.50%||28.14%|
|Trainer||Races||Win Rate||Place Rate||Show Rate|
|Shirer Matt A||58||41.38%||51.72%||63.79%|
|Heitzmann Eric L||46||30.43%||30.43%||30.43%|
|Foley Gregory D||65||29.23%||36.92%||49.23%|
|Catalano Wayne M||56||28.57%||37.50%||50.00%|
|Pessin Neil L||45||26.67%||26.67%||26.67%|
|Hartman Chris A||87||26.44%||37.93%||68.97%|
|Hodges James E||46||26.09%||78.26%||78.26%|