In a wild ride of ups and downs, Evangeline Downs Racetrack & Casino has proved to be a resilient and steadfast venue. Currently located in St. Landry Parish, Louisiana, it originally opened in 1966 at Carencro, Louisiana, but moved afterward to Opelousas.

It was forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 1986, after a missed payment on a purse, and it had to close for a few years. After changing to a Chapter 7 liquidation, the owners asked the court to take over and Evangeline Downs was sold. Mortgage-holder Louisiana Savings Association auction-bought it and races resumed in 1987.

The venue tried adding video poker machines in 1992, but in 1996, Lafayette Parish banned video poker on its turf, leaving the track owners to plan a move to nearby St. Landry Parish. In February 2002, Peninsula Gaming bought the track and carried out the move to Opelousas, along with the opening of a casino, and races were resumed, yet again, in 2005. Peninsula was acquired by Boyd Gaming in 2012.

Evangeline Downs was rated #6 in a rating system introduced by the Horseplayers Association of North America in 2009, which rated 65 North American thoroughbred racetracks. It is also the country’s first Racino (racetrack + casino) built from the ground up. It caters to Thoroughbred flat and American Quarter Horse racing.

BETMANIA players can find Evangeline Downs Betting Odds on competing horses, including horse racing bet types such as Win/Place/Show, Exactas, Trifectas, Superfectas and many more. Visit our Racebook to learn more about the available bet options and other popular race tracks.

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Evangeline Downs Facts:

  • Racecourse type: American Stakes Thoroughbred (dirt)
  • Location: St. Landry Parish, Louisiana
  • Purse: N/A
  • Venue Capacity: N/A
  • Track length: the main track is 1 mile oval; 7/8-mile track with a 1 1/8-mile chute
  • Important track records: (1977) US Hall of Fame inductee, John Henry won his first stakes race