06/12/2012 10:51AM

Harness: Meadowlands and Pennsylvania tracks collaborate on Open races


Meadowlands Racetrack, Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs and Harrah’s Philadelphia have reached an agreement to alternate the dates of their free for all races in order to spur fuller fields and wagering on the upper echelon of horses.

Utilizing the existing stakes calendar for openings, the three facilities have come up with a schedule of dates for each track to host an open race for a purse of $50,000 for the best horses in the region. 

“We are pleased to announce that as of a result of a suggestion that was emailed to me, and thanks to the cooperation of the Pennsylvania horsemen, Ron Battoni and Sam Beegle in particular, we have reached an agreement with the race offices at both Philadelphia and Pocono to alternate the dates of our free for all races,” said New Meadowlands Racetrack LLC Chairman Jeff Gural.

“We believe that putting these races on the schedule in advance will allow trainers of those top horses to plan accordingly,” Gural continued.  “Equally important, it will enable our customers to have more competitive open races with full fields, which we think will make them more attractive as far as wagering goes.

“We want to thank Rick Kane, the race secretary at Pocono, and Joe Auger, the race secretary at Philadelphia, for working with us on this effort.  We hope that it will be the beginning of our being able to work together in the future for the benefit of the horsemen and our customers.”

The schedule for the $50,000 open events:

Open Pace
7-7 Pocono
7-14 Meadowlands
7-22 Philadelphia

Open Mare Pace
7-17 Pocono
8-10 Meadowlands
8-31 Philadelphia

Open Trot
7-8 Pocono
7-27 Meadowlands
8-10 Philadelphia

(edited press release)