California State Fair Cancels Weekend Racing

Sarah Andrew

Opening weekend for Thoroughbred racing at the California State Fair's Cal Expo in Sacramento has been cancelled due to projected extreme temperatures, the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) said in a release Wednesday. Racing was scheduled Friday-Sunday, July 14-16.

The CHRB follows an Inclement Weather Policy (IWP) which examines temperature, wind speed, and humidity to include recommendations and requirements pertaining to the heat index. The IWP lists the heat index in steps, beginning at 130, the point at which some horses experience discomfort. The danger to horses increases at 150, then reaches a critical level at 180.

While the heat index is not expected to reach 150 in Sacramento this weekend, management at Cal Expo elected to cancel racing out of safety concerns and an abundance of caution. The decision was made in consultation with the CHRB and the California Authority of Racing Fairs (CARF).

“The Board commends the State Fair and CARF for putting animal welfare first,” said Scott Chaney, executive director of the CHRB.

Racing at Cal Expo is currently scheduled July 21-23 and again July 28-30.

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