Battaglia, Espinosa To Fill In As Track Announcers At Churchill On Thursday, Friday

by | 06.18.2017 | 1:05pm
Mike Battaglia's Last Full Time Race Call on March 13, 2016

Longtime Churchill Downs track announcer and current morning line odds maker Mike Battaglia and Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races announcer Paul Espinosa Jr. will fill in for Travis Stone on Thursday and Friday, respectively, while Stone gives the commencement speech at his former high school in Schroon Lake, N.Y.

Battaglia, who spent 19 years as Churchill Downs' announcer (1978-96), will step behind the mic for Thursday's eight-race program that kicks off at 5 p.m. (all times Eastern).

Espinoza, 27, began calling at Charles Town, located in West Virginia, full-time in 2016. Previously, the West Virginia University alum was the Sports Director at WHAG-TV in Hagerstown, Md. The first of nine races Friday kicks off with a first post of 12:45 p.m.

Stone is scheduled to return to the Churchill Downs' microphone Saturday afternoon.

  • J

    Stone is Wonderful.
    He called the Stephen Foster Perfect.
    The current NY Announcer is AWFUL.

  • C Hogan

    I’ll make my one and only trip to Churchill Downs this Thursday. Turfway and Churchill Downs have been fired. Wish Mike was calling everyday.

    • Ky Race Fan

      His calls are accurate. Know he was beat up in the news for dry calls,but I over the years like his calls.

  • Brent T

    Noone is worse than the Prairie Meadows announcer. He never gets anything correct

    • jimmy ski

      The clown at Beltarra gives him a run for the money.His big call of a horse flying down the stretch usually doesn’t pan out.I think he calls who he bets!

      • Longshot

        Yeah you said it right ” the clown at Belterra” . Belterra won’t pay a real announcer

  • Stewart Winograd

    Battaglia’s minimalist style gets a lot of bad press on social media, but I always liked it that he doesn’t chatter a mile a minute. He paints a decent picture with few words.

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