04/28/2010 12:00AM

Quarter Horses get going

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Sam Houston Race Park in Houston will open its Quarter Horse meet Friday night with trial races for the Grade 3 John Deere Juvenile Challenge. The 45-date meet will run through Aug. 14.

The Juvenile Challenge finale will be run May 15. The 350-yard race is one of four graded stakes for 2-year-olds during the meet. The main event is the Grade 1 Sam Houston Futurity on July 2. Last year, the 350-yard race had a purse of $321,900. Other top juvenile races will include the $100,000-added Texas Quarter Horse Association Sale Futurity, a restricted Grade 1 that goes July 31.

The meet's chief offerings for older horses include the Grade 1, $100,000-added Bank of America Texas Challenge Championship on July 10 and the Grade 2 Sam Houston Classic on Aug. 13. Both races are at 440 yards. The annual Texas Summer Showdown of four statebred stakes is July 30.

Sam Houston will have a special daytime post of 1 p.m. Central on Saturday to accommodate the simulcast of the Kentucky Derby. First post Friday is

7 p.m.