05/14/2014 3:48PM

Suffolk Downs cancels two Tuesday cards

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EAST BOSTON, Mass. – Suffolk Downs, which had planned to add Tuesdays to its live-racing calendar beginning next week, has scratched the cards for May 20 and May 27 due to a shortage of horses.

“Right now, the horse population is not adequate to go to a four-day schedule. We’re going to have to take this on a week-by-week basis,” said Chip Tuttle, the track’s chief operating officer.

There are reportedly only about 600 horses on the grounds. The track opened May 3 and has been running three days per week, with racing Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays and cards that numbered from seven to nine races per day.

Suffolk’s meet opened about a month earlier than in the recent past so that as many live days as possible could be run before the Massachusetts Gaming Commission awards the sole destination resort casino license for the greater Boston area.

Mohegan Sun, which plans to develop a $1.3 billion project at the track, and Wynn Resorts, which proposed a $1.6 billion casino only two miles from the stable gate, are the two finalists for the license.

The gaming commission was originally scheduled to make the award in February but has pushed back the timetable several times due to procedural and political issues. The date is now undetermined.