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Sunday, November 6, 2011

Meadowlands Stakes Overhaul; Cal Expo Joins the Pick 4 15% Clug

As the 2012 Meadowlands Stakes calendar is being revised, it reflects Jeff Gural's belief that the industry puts too much emphasis on 2yo races.  Here are some of the changes occurring

  • Scratched (off the schedule) - Oliver Wendell Jones, Niatross, and Countess Adios
  • Added - Simpson Memorial and Reynolds Memorial
  • Other two year old events- reduced purses and nominations fees.
  • Marque events may see purse cuts.  The Meadowlands will add $300,000 to the Meadowlands Pace but in the past has added more money to get the race to $1 million; this year purses or these races will be determined by nominations and fees;  The Jersey Classic will be kept at the fixed $150,000 added money.  The added money will not be increased to get the purses artificially high.  Of course the Meadowlands is contractually required to have the Hambletonian at $1.5 million and the Oaks at $750,000.
In other words, the Meadowlands will live within its means next year and the former generosity with pures have come to an end.

Starting this week, Cal Expo has lowered their takeout on the Pick 4 to 15% for all days. Up to now, Fridays had the regular takeout rate.  Thursdays, will continue the $10,000 Pick 4 pool for the late Pick 4 for the late Pick4 and with Twinspires the $10,000 guaranteed Pick 4 on Saturdays with a zero takeout for those who wager on track or through; all others will be subjected to the 15% take out.  However the point is for those looking for 15% Pick 4s, Cal Expo maybe added to their wagering calendar.

This week kicks off the Harrisburg Sales.  This is the laat major sale for breeders in 2012 and for slot states, you can expect rewarding prices.  For NJ-bred horses, expect another pounding.  This year Harrisburg will be selling their broodmares at a dispersal sale.  It will be interesting to see what they get for the broodmares.

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