03/06/2013 3:16PM

Remington Park: Quarter Horse meet opening with new drug testing policies


Remington Park in Oklahoma City will open its 50-date Quarter Horse meet on Friday night with a new integrity policy, prerace veterinary examinations, and a $4.9 million stakes schedule led by the Grade $1 million Heritage Place Futurity. The meet will run through June 2.

In a new practice being launched this meet, Remington will be refusing entries from horsemen facing penalties for major drug violations. The policy, which will also be in place for the Thoroughbred meet, calls for Remington’s racing office staff to “not knowingly accept” entries not only from any horseman on suspended lists for Class 1 or Class 2 drug violations but extending to those with unresolved positive tests, whether uncontested or not yet adjudicated but confirmed in a split sample.

This meet, any horse racing at Remington will be subject to a prerace exam at the discretion of stewards or the state veterinarian in a joint program with the Oklahoma Racing Commission. In addition, all horses in randomly selected overnight races will undergo prerace exams, as will all futurity and derby finalists and starters in Grade 1 races at Remington.

The Heritage Place Futurity on June 1 anchors a powerful card that includes the Grade 1, $250,000 Remington Park Championship, a race that offers its winner an automatic berth into the Champion of Champions at Los Alamitos. Also on the program is the Heritage Place Derby. Trials for the Heritage Place Futurity are scheduled for May 10-11.

Remington on May 12 will conduct a number of challenge stakes topped by the Grade 2, $100,000 Oklahoma Challenge Championship. The races offer berths into the American Quarter Horse Association’s annual Challenge Championships, which this year will be at Los Alamitos.

Remington will race on a Thursday through Sunday schedule. There will be a 6 p.m. Central post daily, except on Sunday, when the races will start at 1:30 p.m.

All American Futurity worth $2.6M

The All American Futurity will once again highlight the Ruidoso Downs meet in New Mexico that opens May 24. The $2.6 million race for 2-year-old Quarter Horses will be held on the closing-day card Sept. 2. Trials are Aug. 15.

The All American is one of three Grade 1 futurities on offer each meet. The series begins with the $750,000 Ruidoso Futurity on June 9, and continues with the $1 million Rainbow Futurity on July 21. The horse who can sweep the three races will earn his connections a $4 million bonus, according to a release put out by Ruidoso.

Other major races include the Grade 1 All American Derby, which is projected to have a record purse of $2.8 million when it is run Sept. 1. The 440-yard race for 3-year-olds is part of a major derby series that also includes the $800,000 Ruidoso Derby on June 8 and the Rainbow Derby on July 20.