09/13/2008 12:00AM

Tracks mostly unhurt by Ike


Officials from Sam Houston Race Park in Houston and Delta Downs in Vinton, La., on Saturday afternoon were assessing damages to their facilities and plotting reopening schedules just hours after Hurricane Ike made landfall in nearby Galveston, Texas. In advance of the storm last week, Delta closed its casino and simulcast operations Thursday, and Sam Houston canceled the final two dates of its Quarter Horse meet on Friday and Saturday.

The horses on the grounds at Sam Houston are believed to have weathered the storm well, said Gina Rotolo, a spokeswoman for the track. She said management was to have a conference call Saturday to assess damage and set a timeline for reopening. Because of power outages, the track was not scheduled to open for simulcasting on Sunday, while a decision on Monday was to be made by 1 p.m.

Delta is located about 30 minutes from the Gulf of Mexico, near Beaumont, Texas. Steve Kuypers, the assistant general manager at Delta, said reports from personnel stationed at the track have indicated some wind damage to the roof over Delta's steakhouse, and some downed fencing and trees. He said that at this point the storm would not affect the opening of the Thoroughbred meet Oct. 29.