11/12/2004 12:00AM

Hoosier cancels program after jockeys refuse to ride


ANDERSON, Ind. - Hoosier Park canceled its 12-race program Friday night after some members of the jockey colony refused to ride just prior to the first race. According to track steward Gary Wilfert, the jockeys refused to ride in protest of what they believe is inadequate accident insurance and the lack of a safety rail.

Fourteen riders were banned from Churchill Downs this week after they threatened to boycott over the insurance issue. Churchill Downs Inc. is majority owner of Hoosier Park.

The boycott Friday night left Hoosier without enough riders to put on the card, and the program was canceled.

Horses had already been brought to the paddock for the first race when the jockeys held a meeting.

Racing secretary Butch Cook said, "We will have 10 riders here tomorrow night that will ride."