02/06/2004 12:00AM

Golden Gate cuts purses

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Citing a 10 percent reduction in handle through the first 64 days of the current meeting, Golden Gate Fields officials announced Friday that purses will be cut 3.8 percent beginning Wednesday.

In addition, the purses for the Richmond, San Carlos, Danville, and Soviet Problem overnight handicaps will be cut from $60,000-added to $55,000-added.

The purse on the Grade 3 Golden Gate Breeders' Cup Handicap will drop from $150,000 to $125,000. The purse for the Grade 3 Berkeley Handicap will remain at $100,000, but $25,000 will come from the Breeders' Cup and the race will be renamed the Berkeley Breeders' Cup Handicap.

Purses have been cut during the past three Southern California meetings but have not been cut in northern California since it went to a year-round purse distribution schedule in 2001, although the purse schedule has been revamped to increase the purse structure at the bottom levels.