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ThistledownThistledown is a one-mile thoroughbred race track in North Randall, Ohio. The track is located on 128 acres approximately 10 miles southeast of downtown Cleveland.

Thistledown holds live horse racing in a season that typically starts either in March or April and ends in December. In fact, the track has one of the longest racing seasons of all North American thoroughbred racetracks, covering approximately 185 racing days.

Thistledown hosts the Ohio Derby every year. The Derby is the premier graded stakes race in the state and one of the top races for three-year olds in the country. Aside from the Derby, other Stakes events hosted by Thistledown include:

Merry Time Stakes Ohio Debutante Handicap
Cleveland Gold Cup The Emerald Necklace Stakes
Rose DeBartolo Memorial The Best of Ohio Endurance
George Lewis Memorial The Best of Ohio Distaff
North Randall Stakes The Best of Ohio Sprint
Cleveland Kindergarten Stakes The Juvenile Stakes
Miss Ohio Stakes The John W. Galbreath

One of the peculiar aspects of horse racing at Thistledown is that they consider some simulcast races from the nearby Ohio track of Beulah Park as being “theirs”. This is the reason why many betting schedules and guides often put the names of these two tracks side-by-side on their materials.

Thistle Down Track Facts

Main Track : One Mile, oval
Distance from last turn to finish line : 978 feet

History of Thistledown


  • Thistledown race track opened.


  • Onion Roll reached 43.26 mph in a race at Thistledown on Sept. 27. This was the fastest speed recorded by any horse in a single race.

North Randall, Ohio

Click to Enlarge


  • Magna Entertainment, one of North America’s biggest owners, operators and managers of horse racing tracks, acquired Thistledown in November.


  • Five barns with 34 stalls each opened on the Thistledown backstretch, increasing the Cleveland-area track’s stable capacity to 34 barns and 1,598 stalls.

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