Wheeling Island Hotel, Casino, and Racetrack is cutting back on the number of dog races it presents. They will still have seven "performances" of racing each week, but on Friday and Saturday, both the matinee and evening performances will have two fewer races than they did in 2012.
Casino officials say the racetrack will reduce the number of races per week from 115 to 107. They say dog racing is a declining industry.
"Racing was very popular many years ago, but with the extra casinos and lotteries and different forms of entertainment that have come on line, racing has year over year become a declining business for us," said Vice President of Operations Michael Maestle. "And currently about 10 percent of our business is on the racing side and 90 percent on the casino end of the business."
When asked if dog racing may go away completely someday, Mike Maestle said under current West Virginia law, to have a casino, you must have racing.
He says it's necessary, the way the law stands now, but it's certainly not a large part of their business.