12/18/2009 12:00AM

Laurel cancels Saturday program


Weather forecasts calling for up to 15 inches of snow in central Maryland caused the Maryland Jockey Club to cancel the final day of live racing for 2009 at Laurel Park.

In addition to calling off Saturday's card, officials said that both Laurel and Pimlico would be closed for simulcasting.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning for Maryland and its neighboring states from Friday evening until late Saturday night, with predictions of 10 to 15 inches of snow in Anne Arundel County.

Also canceled is the Maryland Horse Council rally, which was scheduled to be held in the Laurel paddock at 11 a.m.

The closing-day feature, the $50,000 Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship for 2-year-old fillies, has been rescheduled for Jan. 1, but with different conditions since all horses become a year older on the first day of the year.

The race will be renamed the Maryland Filly Championship.

The racing office will draw for the Jan. 1 card on Dec. 29. All 16 runners nominated are eligible to run.

The 15-week Laurel Park fall meeting ended Friday with Erick Rodriguez and Scott Lake winning individual titles.

Rodriguez captured the riding title by winning 53 races, 14 more than apprentice Joshua Navarro.

Lake won 25 races, three more than runner-up Dale Capuano. Since 2006, the Lake barn has captured 12 of the 16 meets conducted at Laurel and Pimlico.

Lake and Luis Garcia captured year-round titles in the state. Lake runners won 89 races at Laurel and Pimlico, while Garcia rode 84 winners. Both will be honored by the Maryland Jockey Club on Jan 9.