07/27/2011 9:06PM

Santa Anita to run 24-day fall meet

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Santa Anita’s autumn race meeting will run for 24 days, Sept. 30-Nov. 6, the track announced on Wednesday.

The autumn race meeting marks the first time that Santa Anita will conduct a fall meeting fully operated by its own management. The Oak Tree Racing Association conducted a fall meeting at Santa Anita from 1969 through 2009 and at Hollywood Park in 2010, but was not granted racing dates for the fall by the California Horse Racing Board earlier this year.

Santa Anita and Oak Tree reached a financial agreement earlier this year for Santa Anita to use the familiar Oak Tree stakes as prep races for the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita this fall. Many of those prep races will be run on Oct. 1-2, though Santa Anita has not published a stakes schedule.
The financial arrangement will allow Oak Tree, a not-for-profit organization, to continue its donations to a variety of racing-related charities.

Racing will primarily be conducted on a four-day per week basis, with the exception of a three-day opening week from Sept. 30 through Oct. 2, and a five-day week, ending on Columbus Day, Monday, Oct. 10. The season will include simulcasts of the Breeders’ Cup races from Churchill Downs on Nov. 4-5.

The racing dates are subject to the approval of the California Horse Racing Board, which is expected to discuss them at its August meeting.