01/15/2011 10:15AM

Horses able to train over track at Oaklawn

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HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - Oaklawn Park resumed morning training Saturday for the first time in five days following a snowstorm that had forced the track to cancel Friday’s opening-day card. The meet is scheduled to begin on Saturday.

More than five inches of snow fell on Hot Springs late Sunday, leading to the cancellation of training from Monday through Thursday. Oaklawn was able to open its track for training late Friday afternoon, after maintenance crews harrowed the surface for about eight hours.

But morning training resumed on Saturday, with the first group of horses stepping onto the track at 6:40 a.m. It was clear and about 40 degrees. A handful of horses worked within the first hour, including the D. Wayne Lukas-trained set of Tidal Pool, the third-place finisher in last year’s Kentucky Oaks, and Decelerator, a Grade 3 winner. The fillies breezed a half-mile together in 49.80 seconds.

Oaklawn’s opening-day feature on Saturday is the $50,000 Dixie Belle for 3-year-old fillies. Forecasters are calling for a high of 48 degrees. First post is 1 p.m. Central.