Freehold Raceway is a ½-mile Standardbred harness racetrack located in Freehold, New Jersey that dates back to the 1830s — today Freehold Raceway is known as the “Nation’s oldest and fastest daytime ½-mile harness racing track.”
In addition to their daytime harness race dates Freehold Raceway plans to incorporate sports betting later this year to compete with the Meadowlands (East Rutherford) and Monmouth Park (Oceanport) — both of which already offer sports betting.
Freehold Raceway is the oldest racetrack in the United States with informal races taking place as early as the 1830s. The Monmouth County Agricultural Society (founded December 17, 1853) began holding an annual fair — with harness racing officially beginning in 1854.
Penn National Gaming and Greenwood Gaming & Entertainment, Inc. (in a partnership) acquired Freehold Raceway in 1998 for $46 million.
Freehold Raceway owns and operates 2 Favorites off-track wagering facilities in New Jersey, one in Clementon and the other in Toms River.
From 1998 to 2010, Freehold Raceway played host to the Cane Pace, an annual Standardbred (harness) horse that began in 1955 and is also the first leg in the Triple Crown of Harness Racing for Trotters. Today the most notable race held at Freehold Raceway today is the Dexter Cup final for 3-year-old trotters with an estimated purse of $130,000 (2019). USA Today says that the “Road to the Hambletonian starts with Dexter Cup at Freehold“.
The Daily Racing Form (DRF) assigned Freehold Raceway a speed rating of 9 (1:58 1/5-1:58 2/5) and a record rank of 18t.
Date opened: 1854
Track length: ½-m
Stretch length: 480 ft
Stretch width: 80 ft
Seating capacity: 2,450
Track surface: Dirt
Race type: Harness
Owned by: Penn National Gaming