09/06/2013 2:56PM

Fair Grounds: Halstrom leaving as general manager


Eric Halstrom will leave his position as vice president and general manager for racing at Fair Grounds Racecourse and Slots on Oct. 1, Halstrom confirmed Friday morning.

Halstrom has worked at Fair Grounds in a similar capacity since 2008. He said he was leaving the job in New Orleans “for personal and family reasons.”

Fair Grounds president Tim Bryant said the track was in the early stages of finding a replacement for Halstrom, with the track’s 2013-14 meet scheduled to start Nov. 21.

“The timing is interesting, but we’re already in the process of working to find a replacement,” Bryant said.

Halstrom came to Fair Grounds from Canterbury Park in Minnesota and is rumored to be returning to the Twin Cities-area racetrack. Halstrom would not confirm that he’d taken a job with Canterbury, and Canterbury president Randy Sampson did not return a phone call Friday.

Bryant came to Fair Grounds, a Churchill Downs Inc. property that houses a slot-machine parlor, with a background in the casino industry, and Halstrom was the racing-oriented part of the track’s upper-management hierarchy. Bryant said it wasn’t entirely certain Halstrom’s replacement would serve in an identical capacity.

“That’s what my assumption is, but there are some factors involved there,” Bryant said.