WINNEBAGO, Neb. (KCAU) — A division of Ho-Chunk has begun the process of including casinos as part of their horse racing facilities.  

WarHorse Gaming stated in a release that it submitted applications to operate gaming licenses to operate casinos at Horsemen’s Park in Omaha and Lincoln Race Course in Lincoln. WarHorse Gaming is the first casino operator to submit an application to the Nebraska Racing and Gaming Commission.  

WarHorse Gaming is a division of Ho-Chunk, Inc., the economic development corporation of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska. the company announced plans in July 2021 to construct five furlong horse racing tracks and an eventual gaming facility in Norfolk.

Lynne McNally, CEO Nebraska Horsemen; Tom Sage, Executive Director of Nebraska Racing and Gaming Commission; Lance Morgan, CEO Ho-Chunk, Inc. The checks are the application fees for Lincoln, Omaha and South Sioux City.

“The commission has done a phenomenal job in creating a comprehensive regulatory standard for an entirely new industry within the state,” said CEO of Ho-Chunk, Inc. Lance Morgan. “We are extremely excited the time has come for us to submit our application and begin the process of bringing world-class casinos that all Nebraskans can be proud of. As a Nebraska-based company, we are honored for this opportunity.” 

The release stated that WarHorse management anticipates construction to begin in both Omaha and Lincoln as soon as possible. Lincoln is expected to be the first location to open with 1,300 gaming stations, a 296-room hotel, event space, restaurants, live and simulcast racing, along with other amenities.  

The projects are anticipated to take 18 to 24 months to finish and $600 million in investments.  

WarHorse Gaming will organize a phased opening prior to the grand opening at Omaha and Lincoln. These will take place before the facilities are completed, according to the release. The phased opening in Lincoln will have 400 slot machines, and Omaha’s phased opening will have 800 slot machines.  

The release specified that Lincoln’s facility is intended to open later in the year, and Omaha’s is intended to open in 2023.