11/19/2010 10:26AM

Claiming Crown may move to Fair Grounds, could be run later in the year


The 2011 Claiming Crown is unlikely to be held at its customary site, Canterbury Park in suburban Minneapolis, but instead could move to Fair Grounds in New Orleans, according to Jeff Maday, who served as Claiming Crown coordinator for the 2010 running at Canterbury.

Maday said Friday that ongoing talks have been held with Fair Grounds officials about hosting the Claiming Crown. A switch in sites likely would necessitate the next Claiming Crown being run in December 2011, since Fair Grounds traditionally conducts a four-month meet from late November to late March.

Fair Grounds officials were not immediately available for comment.

The Claiming Crown, run annually since 1999, has been held at Canterbury for all but its 12 runnings except two, when it was run at Philadelphia Park in 2002 and Ellis Park in 2007. The traditional date has been late July or early August.

The Claiming Crown is a series of six races run under starter-allowance conditions with total purses of about $500,000.
Canterbury released its 2011 racing schedule this week, with mention of the Claiming Crown being noticeably absent.
Canterbury is scheduled to run a 62-day meeting next year from May 20 through Sept. 5.