12/20/2001 12:00AM

New Jersey dates set at 141

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The New Jersey Racing Commission approved a plan for 141 live racing days in 2002 for Monmouth Park and The Meadowlands without assigning actual dates for the meets.

With the action, which took place at a regular commission meeting Thursday, the commission declined to endorse a specific dates schedule reached between horsemen and the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, according to Bruce Garland, the vice president of racing for the NJSEA, which owns Monmouth and The Meadowlands.

The commission will assign the actual racing dates at its January meeting, Garland said.

The commission's approval will allow the NJSEA to continue to offer simulcasts in 2002. If the commission had not approved racing dates before the end of the year, that ability would have been jeopardized.

Racing commission officials could not be reached for comment on Thursday afternoon, when the meeting took place.

Horsemen and the NJSEA had agreed last week on a plan for 141 live racing dates, with racing beginning at Monmouth Park on May 11 and continuing until Sept. 1. The next day, racing would begin at The Meadowlands, with the meet scheduled to end Nov. 30.