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New Director named for Penn National Racing

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Eric Johnston had been named the new Penn National Director of Racing.

Eric Johnston, currently Vice President of Racing/Racing Secretary at Sam Houston Race Park, has been named Director of Racing Operations for Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course.

Johnston, a native of Grantville, Pennsylvania where Penn National is located, began his racing official’s career at that facility in 1983 and also served as a racing official in the state of Maryland for five years.   He moved to Texas in 1994 to open the then brand new Sam Houston Race Park as Stakes Coordinator and was soon promoted to Director of Racing and Racing Secretary.   In addition to his racing office responsibilities Johnston also had management oversight for the mutuel, simulcast and player services departments at Sam Houston.  For the past three seasons Johnston has also served as Director of Racing at Fort Erie Race Course in Canada.

Penn National Gaming, Inc., the parent company of Penn National Race Course, entered into a joint venture ownership agreement with Maxxam, the parent company of Sam Houston Race Park, in 2011.

“Eric brings a strong foundation of both racing and management experience to this position.   He has had to be creative in recent years at Sam Houston due to the intense regional racing competition but the program is always one of the more highly regarded in the country,” said Christopher McErlean, Vice President of Racing for Penn National Gaming, Inc.   “In addition, Eric knows the Mid Atlantic region and is passionate about racing – a great combination to help Penn National going into the future,” McErlean added.

“I am extremely excited about this next chapter in my racing career. While it will difficult to leave Sam Houston after twenty years, I am looking forward to working with the talented staff at Penn National and helping to elevate a great racing product to the next level,” said Johnston.

Johnston will begin his duties at Penn National in early April pending all required regulatory approvals.