Green Pastures Program Overview

If you are in the Thoroughbred horse racing business or if you like to watch or bet on horse racing, there is one thing all can agree on:  One of the most magnificent animals on Earth, is the Thoroughbred racehorse.  Their glossy look, engaging personality and huge heart--and their speed--endear all of us who get to share our lives with them.

Each year, thousands of racehorses are retired from racing. Many go on to second careers as stallions, broodmares or pleasure horses. Unfortunately, many other racehorses are retired due to age or injury after long and sometimes unsuccessful racing careers. These horses face an uncertain future because their physical ailments may make them unsuitable for riding or second careers. 

In response to the needs of retiring racehorses and their owners and trainers, Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI), launched its Green Pastures Program® in 2002 and continues as a Company-wide "best practices" program with four primary objectives:

  1. Educate horsemen about racehorse adoption and sponsorship programs and encourage them to retire horses sound and suitable for second careers.
  2. Facilitate the donation of retired racehorses to non-profits associated with CDI racetracks through the use of CDI properties and personnel.
  3. Raise funds to support retirement, retraining and adoption organizations associated with CDI racetracks through the Green Pastures Program. Funds raised through Green Pastures are earmarked for the care, retraining and adoption of the ex-racehorses.
  4. Raise awareness of the non-profit organizations servicing the CDI racetracks, through CDI-sponsored marketing and public relations initiatives.


How the Green Pastures Program Works

Educating Horsemen
To meet our No. 1 objective of educating and engaging horsemen, CDI has established a Green Pastures contact at each CDI racetrack (Arlington Park, Calder Casino & Race Course, Churchill Downs and Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots). The Green Pastures contact will be responsible for meeting individually with horsemen to inform them about Green Pastures and the options for their retiring horse.

Raising Awareness
We also work to educate race fans and the general public about the Green Pastures Program through public service announcements and advertisements in our racing programs and through information posted on our Company Websites. Green Pastures Program Information Centers will be established in our racing offices and guest services stations, featuring brochures explaining the program and the benefits of donating, adopting and sponsoring retired racehorses. We also work with media outlets in the communities where we do business, to spread the word about the Green Pastures Program.

Raising Funds
In addition to raising awareness, the Green Pastures Program will assist in raising funds to help the nonprofits servicing the CDI tracks facilitate the retirement and retraining of the horses from CDI's racetracks.