08/02/2006 12:00AM

Saratoga, Monmouth, Delaware cancel


Officials at Saratoga Racecourse, Monmouth Park, and Delaware Park announced that they have canceled their Wednesday racing programs because of the intense heat and humidity blanketing the Northeast and Middle Atlantic regions. Suffolk Downs announced on Tuesday that it would not race on Wednesday.

In Saratoga Springs, N.Y., track officials met with horsemen and jockeys and reached a unanimous decision to call off racing early Wednesday morning, the track reported. Simulcasting wagering at the track was also canceled.

"The consensus in the room was to take the ultimate precaution and cancel the entire card for the safety of all participants," said Bill Nader, NYRA Senior Vice President. "Racing will resume tomorrow and Friday's card will be expanded to a 10-race program."

In Oceanport, N.J., Monmouth Park officials canceled racing for the fourth time this season, the first because of heat. Monmouth lost two days in July due to the shutdown of state government and one all-turf card in June scheduled for the Meadowlands Racetrack because of a wet course.

The National Weather Service issued an excessive heat warning for Saratoga Springs with a high of 94 degrees, a heat index of 106, and a risk of severe thunderstorms. An excessive heat warning was also issued for Oceanport with a high of 101, a heat index of 113, and a risk of thunderstorms.

Three tracks canceled racing on Tuesday because of the heat: Delaware, Colonial Downs in Virginia, and Finger Lakes in central New York.