07/03/2007 11:00PM

Barn area opens for eagerly awaited meet


Kari Craddock, who trains stakes winner Annie Savoy, was one of the first trainers to move horses into Remington Park in Oklahoma City when the stable area opened on Monday. The track's 69-date meet will get under way on Aug. 2. Remington was to open for training on Thursday.

"I'll be the first one on the track," said Craddock, who is looking forward to what is shaping up to be one of the most anticipated meets in the history of Remington.

The track, which opened a casino in November 2005, is expected to draw a strong contingent of horsemen. Donnie Von Hemel, who won his 12th title Remington title in 2006, will be back to head a group that includes Bret Calhoun, the leader at Lone Star Park. Steve Asmussen, who as of Wednesday morning ranked second in the nation in trainer wins, just two off Scott Lake, also plans to have a large division at Remington.

"They granted me 40 stalls," said Asmussen.

Cliff Berry, who has won 11 riding titles at Remington, will head a jockey colony deep in newcomers. Ramsey Zimmerman, who leads the standings at Lone Star, is expected for the meet, as is Eddie Martin Jr., who recently moved his tack back to this region after riding in New York.

The first official trainer through the stable gate Monday was F.L. Downey, who bedded down six runners.