As one of the oldest courses in the USA, Hawthorne Race Course in Illinois is a unique spot. Best of all, it's not just about a long and illustrious history. The track is about to become Chicago's first 'Racino', bringing a much-loved venue bang up-to-date.
That long-awaited $400-million racino — an exciting mix of on-course equestrian action and glittering gambling halls — should be open in 2024. Even before that, there is plenty for sports lovers to enjoy at Hawthorne.
About Hawthorne Race Course in Illinois
The story begins in 1890, when Chicago businessman and racehorse owner Edward Corrigan followed up his Kentucky Derby win by purchasing a plot of land in Cicero, IL. The following year, Corrigan opened his own racetrack, and the Hawthorne legend was born.
There was a hiatus from 1905 to 1922 when the Chicago authorities banned the horses, but otherwise, the course has an unbroken history of high-class racing. Chicago's Hometown Track is unique in the USA: it is the only race course that offers year-round contests for thoroughbreds and standardbred horses. Stand-out meetings include a trio of Grade 3 stakes: the Hawthorne Gold Cup Handicap, the Illinois Derby, and the Sixty Sails Handicap. The Hawthorne Derby had a Grade 3 rating until 2017 and remains a big draw each October.
Sports fans can get their fix at the PointsBet Sportsbook lounge in the Hawthorne Racecourse in Illinois clubhouse, an exclusive space for watching and betting on top sporting action televised from around the world. And dedicated Chicago sports fans won't want to miss the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame, commemorating the biggest stars from the metro area.
Hawthorne Race Course and PointsBet sportsbook partnership
As soon as the state-authorized sports betting, Hawthorne Race Course was quick out of the traps in forming a partnership with PointsBet in Illinois. The pair signed a 20-year partnership deal on July 1, 2019, less than a month after legislators opened the door for Illinois sportsbooks to apply for licenses.
The deal means that Hawthorne can expand its on-site betting to include a retail sportsbook, provided by the fast-growing PointsBet brand. It also paved the way for PointsBet to open two off-course retail sportsbooks in the track's chain of betting bars throughout the state.
In the future, the partnership will also drive Hawthorne's transformation into Chicago's first racino, bringing a premium casino and sportsbook action to the historic race course.
What types of gambling does the Hawthorne Race Course offer?
How do I place a bet at the Hawthorne Race Course?
If you're a first-timer at the races, you might be confused about how to bet. Here's a beginner's guide to getting your wager on.
Can I bet on sports at the Hawthorne Race Course?
Yes, sports betting is all a part of the Hawthorne Race Course experience. The track has a 20-year partnership with PointsBet sportsbook and has a special lounge area in the clubhouse devoted to the best in sporting action.
Here, guests aged 21+ can relax and enjoy top events from anywhere in the world, broadcast live on the big screens. And, while the action unfolds, anyone is welcome to place their bets on the outcome.
Which sports can I bet on at the Hawthorne Race Course?
The retail sportsbook at Hawthorne offers wagers on a full range of sports from all over the world. Here are some of the biggest attractions.