Wednesday, April 18, 2007

News Hits 4/18

- A rule barring trainers not stabled at an authorized Maryland Jockey Club training center from claiming horses at the upcoming Pimlico Race Course spring meet was passed Tuesday on an emergency basis by the Maryland Racing Commission.
“It’s going to be similar to the New York rule for an owner or trainer to claim a horse in Maryland,” said Lou Raffeto (President of the Maryland Jockey Club). “They must be assigned stalls in one of the three Maryland Jockey Club facilities. The exception is going to be if a trainer who does not have a horse on the grounds loses one here; he can replace a horse for that particular owner.”
Trainers who do not have stalls at Pimlico, Laurel, or Bowie Training Center would only be allowed to claim the exact number of horses lost to claims at the track for the same owner. A licensed trainer without stalls will have 12 months after losing a horse at the claim box to make a replacement claim at a Maryland track.
“We’re a little tired of guys coming in from West Virginia and Pennsylvania at the end of the Pimlico meeting and taking horses out of state,” Raffetto said.
- The Maryland Racing Commission yesterday approved twilight racing at Pimlico during the spring meet that begins tomorrow. The commission OK'd six twilight days, May 24-25 and 31 and June 1 and 7-8, when racing will begin at 3:15 p.m.
"We experimented with twilight racing at Laurel last August, It was extremely successful. We found a different demographic, with families and young people coming in after they'd finished work. While that was August, when kids were out of school, we're hoping to see the same change in demographics at Pimlico." (Lou Raffeto)


Anonymous said...
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Warstone said...

This sounds like the desperate act of a desperate jurisdiction. With this they hope that the people that race in Maryland and support are not going to have their horses claimed by the evil people across the border (West Virginia, Pen and Del).
But with the way purses will be going the problem is that even the horses stabled at the Maryland tracks will be racing in the other states.
This will back fire. It will create the same problems that it does in NY. The problem is that if you are a new owner trying to get into the game this rule makes it very difficult to get started by claiming a horse. Since you need to be currenlty assigned a stall to claim as an owner as well, if you are not a current owner you can't get in.

In a sport where tracks continually say that they want to promote to a new fan base. These rules are just another barrier to entry.

They also do not stop anyone that wants to claim a horse. The only thing that will happen is that all those out of town people will just apply for a couple of stalls at one of the tracks and keep claiming all the horses to run for real purses.


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