With live harness racing, a casino, a hotel, a variety of dining options and a concert venue, it’s easy to see why Batavia Downs Hotel And Gaming in Batavia, N.Y. is billed as the area’s premier entertainment destination. It is located in Genesee County between Buffalo and Rochester, just off of the New York State Thruway.
The half-mile layout at Batavia Downs is the oldest lighted racetrack in the United States. The facility first opened its doors to live harness racing on September 20, 1940. A crowd of more than 2,500 was in attendance and $10,411 was wagered on that first card.
The Clubhouse is open on race nights during the live harness racing season from July-December and features tiered style seating for a view of the racetrack. Both buffet-style and sit down menus are offered and the clubhouse also houses a bar. Along with live racing, there is also wagering offered via simulcast from racetracks spread across North America. All of the track’s horse racing can be wagered on from home via the telephone or the internet at Bataviabets.com.
For those who prefer casino-style gambling, Batavia Downs Hotel And Gaming offers over 850 of the hottest and in-demand video gaming machines available for play. Popular titles include Wheel of Fortune, Sex & The City, 88 Fortunes, 5 Dragons and Double Diamond.
There are five dining options at Batavia Downs Hotel And Gaming. These include Fortune’s Italian Steakhouse, Burnin’ Barrel BBQ at the Homestretch Grill, the Clubhouse and Rail Bar, The Gatsby At Fortune’s and The Labatt Blue Zone at 34 Rush. The latter spot is named in honor of Buffalo Bills Hall of Fame running back Thurman Thomas.
The Hotel at Batavia Downs offers 84 well-appointed guest rooms and suites. There are track view rooms available that will enable guests to catch all the harness racing action. Each room features luxurious bed sets, feather down pillows and high count bed sheets, as well as Green Natura Bath amenities and a complimentary hot breakfast. There is $10 free play in the gaming area allotted to each guest per night’s stay. As well, wireless high speed Internet is accessible throughout the hotel.
The hotel features space for weddings, meetings and other events. Room rates start as low as $79 per night.
The summer is all about music in the Batavia Downs event center. The Rockin’ The Downs Concert Series has been highlighted by such acts as Vince Neil, Molly Hatchet, the Spin Doctors, Skid Row, The Grass Roots, Tommy James And the Shondells and Queensryche.
Batavia Downs is licenced by the Schenectady-based New York State Gaming Commission.
Major Horse Betting Events at the Venue
With a purse of $50,000, the Robert J. Kane Memorial Pace is the highlight race of the season at Batavia Downs. The open free-for-all pace was won three times by Foiled Again. The gelding pacer who raced from 2006-18 won the race in 2009, 2013 and 2016. Foiled Again remains on the books as the richest earning harness horse in history, with a career bankroll of $7,635,588.
There’s also New York Sires Stakes events for two and three-year-old New York breds held throughout the season at Batavia Downs.
Live harness racing is conducted at Batavia Downs from July-December.
Batavia Downs also offers simulcast wagering on tracks from across Canada and the United States, both thoroughbred and harness courses. There are as many as 27 tracks to choose from for wagering purposes on certain days of the week.
Bet Types Allowed
Types of bets available at Batavia Downs include win, place, show, across the board, exacta, trifecta and superfecta. Bets with multiple races included are daily double, pick 3, pick 4, pick 5, pick 6 and grand slam.
Horses can be boxed or wheeled in exacta, trifecta and superfecta wagering. When boxing horses, a bettor is enabling a ticket to cash as a winner no matter the order of finish of the horses that are part of the box. In the case of wheeling, one horse is keyed in a specific order of finish and the remaining horses in the bet are wheeled around that horse.
Mobile Betting App
Batavia Downs does not offer a mobile app.
Players who sign up for a new BataviaBets.com account and wager a $100 will get a $25 bonus on top of that. Only win and exotic wagers count towards the threshold bonus. Once $100 has been wagered, the promotional bonus will be deposited to the player’s account the following day via an automated process. Customers who accept the $25 bonus may not withdraw the funds from the account. It must first be wagered. Once the $25 has been wagered, whatever is left is eligible for withdrawal. Wagering must be conducted through BataviaBets internet and/or telephone account wagering system to be eligible for the $25 bonus.
Visit Batavia downs at least 10 times in a month and earn a minimum of one point per day and that makes a player eligible for membership in their Ambassador Club. The reward for being part of their Ambassador Club is $5 in free play at the kiosk on the date that is provided by the track.
In their gaming area, bettors can join the Batavia Downs Hotel And Gaming Player’s Club and be eligible for perks, free offers and exclusive contests.
Get a friend to sign up for a new BataviaBets account and earn a $10 bonus once they’ve wagered $100 via win and exotic bets. The referral account must be a new account and the referral account must enter the account number of the friend who referred them in order for the promotion to be activated.
There are also special promotions for seniors (50 and over) and followers of Batavia Downs Hotel And Gaming on their social media sites. Batavia Downs offers recurring handicapping competitions for horseplayers and rotating promotional offers in their gaming area. Be sure to check their promotions page for the most up-to-date promotional information.