11/07/2006 1:00AM

Churchill income at $2.7M for quarter


Churchill Downs Inc., the racetrack owner and operator, had net income on continuing operations of $2.7 million in the third quarter of 2006 on revenues of $106 million, according to financial statements released Tuesday.

The third-quarter results were reported based on continuing operations because Churchill sold Ellis Park in the quarter and because the company sold Hollywood Park in the third quarter of last year, making comparisons difficult. With the sale of Ellis Park included, earnings were $8.7 million.

According to the statements, the sale of Ellis resulted in a gain of $4.2 million to Churchill during this year’s third quarter, but that was as a result of several tax benefits Churchill accrued because of write-downs on the Ellis property and did not reflect the sales price. Churchill has said that the price of Ellis was not material to its financial results.

Revenue was up 4.6 percent from the third quarter last year, though operating expenses rose 4 percent to $91.7 million and administrative expenses rose 8.2 percent to $14.6 million.

Revenue from Churchill’s Louisiana operations, which includes Fair Grounds and its OTB’s, were up sharply in the quarter to $15 million, from $7.5 million. Last year during the third quarter, New Orleans and many parts of Louisiana were devastated by flooding and Hurricane Katrina.