08/06/2009 11:00PM

Clark, longtime official, dies

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Longtime racing official Bob Clark died Friday at the Cleveland VA Medical Center, several weeks after suffering a neck injury that required surgery. Clark was working as a steward at Thistledown up until the time he was injured. He was 78.

Clark worked at Tampa Bay Downs for 30 years before leaving in 2008. He started off at Tampa as a claims clerk, spent many years as the track's racing secretary, and also served as a steward there.

Clark was a steward at Detroit Race Course from 1978 until the track closed in 1998 and was a steward at Arapahoe Park in Colorado for the track's 2008 meet. Clark had been a steward at Thistledown since 2006.

"Bob was a super guy," said Philip "Butch" Gore Jr., the state steward at Thistledown. "I worked with him for many years. He was a true professional."

Funeral arrangements are pending.