07/06/2004 11:00PM

Mixed meet opens


ALTOONA, Iowa - Looking to sustain the momentum from a successful Thoroughbred meeting, Prairie Meadows begins its 47-day mixed meeting Friday evening.

The 49-day Thoroughbred meeting, which ended Sunday, saw total daily average handle increase more than 20 percent from 2003.

The mixed meeting runs through Sept. 25 with racing to be conducted on Monday and Tuesday afternoons and Friday and Saturday evenings. The mixed meet consists mainly of 10-race programs. The first six races are for Thoroughbreds, and the final four races each day for Quarter Horses.

The highlight of the mixed meeting is the 12th annual Iowa Classic Night on Aug. 28. Iowa Classic Night is an all-stakes program for statebreds, highlighted by six Thoroughbred stakes for Iowa-breds in various divisions, totaling more than $410,000 in purse money.

In line with last year, purses are expected to average approximately $114,000 per day during the mixed meeting as part of a three-year contract between the track and horsemen, which runs through 2005.

On the track, Dick Clark, Prairie Meadows' all-time leading trainer, and runaway champ at the 2004 Thoroughbred meeting, seeks his fourth straight mixed meet training title.

Glenn Corbett goes after his sixth straight mixed meet riding title. Corbett finished third in the recently concluded Thoroughbred meeting after riding the final six weeks of the meeting with a broken fibula in his left leg. He was injured when he was unseated leaving the starting gate on May 25

Corbett figures to get a stiff battle from Tim Doocy, who won the riding title at the Thorough-bred meeting. That meeting was the first time Doocy, a winner of over 4,400 career races, had ridden on a regular basis at Prairie Meadows.

Post time will be 3:15 p.m. Central on Monday and Tuesday and 6:15 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. There is a special racing program on Sunday, Sept. 5, starting at 1:15 p.m.