Gulfstream Announces Plan to Race


Gulfstream Announces Plan to Race
Year-Round

 

 

Updated: Thursday,
February 24, 2011 9:59 PM
Posted: Thursday, February 24, 2011 9:52 PM

Gulfstream Park went on the offensive in
its dispute with Calder Casino & Race Course Feb. 24 when it said it plans
to race year-round during the 12 months beginning July 1.

 

Gulfstream officials announced that plan
following a meeting at the Hallandale Beach, Fla., track with Frank Stronach,
chairman of Gulfstream and of its parent MI Developments (MID).

Stronach
later left for Louisville, Gulfstream officials said. On Feb. 25 he is scheduled
to meet with Bill Carstanjen, chief operating officer of Churchill Downs Inc.,
the parent of Calder.

Gulfstream hopes the meeting will help resolve some
issues between the two tracks, said Tim Ritvo, Gulfstream’s vice president of
racing.

Gulfstream and Calder have until Feb. 28 to resolve a dispute in which both have said they will hold racing in
December 2011.

By Feb. 28, each track must submit its final date filing
to the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering for the 12 months beginning July
1.

 

Florida Thoroughbred tracks choose their
own dates, with automatic approval from the Florida DPMW.

Calder
officials declined comment Feb. 24.

Gulfstream traditionally races from
early January through late April. Calder, in Miami Gardens, Fla., traditionally
races the remainder of each year.

On Feb. 22, Calder said it will
consider filing for year-round dates for the 12 months beginning July
1.

Ritvo said that Gulfstream’s preliminary plan starting July 1 is to
run twice a week.

“But that could increase depending on the horse
population,” he said.

That points to another Calder-Gulfstream
issue.

On Feb. 22, Calder announced that starting Feb. 26 it will not
allow Calder-stabled horses that race at Gulfstream during its current meet to
re-enter Calder without prior written approval from Calder’s racing
secretary.

 

Calder’s new policy applies to all horses
except those that are vanned from Calder to Gulfstream for graded
stakes.

Gulfstream responded on Feb. 23 by saying it plans to add
approximately 200 temporary stalls in its stable area for trainers who send
horses from Calder to run in Gulfstream races.

 

Gulfstream expects to have the temporary
stalls ready by Feb. 26.

In addition, about 250 stalls for horses that
leave Calder will be available within several days after March 3 at the Palm
Meadows training center in Boynton Beach, Fla. On March 3, Palm Meadows, also
owned by MID, will be the site of the Fasig-Tipton Florida Sale, and horses in
that sale will then leave the training center.

On Feb. 24, Ritvo said: “I
have received calls from more than 25 trainers in just the past few hours,
asking about relocating (from Calder) and stabling here at
Gulfstream.”

Ritvo said Gulfstream is adding stalls and preparing to run
year-round because Stronach “believes in free enterprise.”

“Mr. Stronach
believes that Calder is holding its horsemen hostage,” Ritvo said. “Horses
stabled at Gulfstream will never be prohibited from racing at the other venue
(Calder).”

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