Horse racing is once again in the news, and this time its positive. Shares of Churchill Downs closed slightly higher Thursday. The gaming company reported solid fourth quarter results late Wednesday. Having said that, analysts are already looking ahead to the near future. The cause for optimism are the operator’s new venues and the potential impact they could have on the stock price.
One such venue is The Rose Gaming Resort in Dumfries, VA. The operator recently won approval to proceed with phase one of the project. Churchill Downs is also preparing to open Owensboro Racing and Gaming in Owensboro, Ky. in early 2025. The Owensboro venue will operate as an annex of Ellis Park Racing and Gaming, and serve to fund purses for horse races at the track. All of this is in the midst of concerns about the domestic horse racing business at the track. Even with those concerns, live and historical racing remains a source of strength for Churchill Downs.
Analysts are bullish on Churchill Downs stock. And that is even though the operator has no Las Vegas exposure. It is also not a major player in the realm of online sports betting. Eight of the 10 analysts covering the stock rated it as a buy or strong buy with a price target of $143. That would be up 19.31% from Thursday’s close. One reason for the optimism is the growth in the operator’s TwinSpires unit. Smart acquisitions are another reason for the promising outlook.
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