NYRA's Renovation of Belmont's Pony Track Complete

The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) has installed a Tapeta Footings synthetic surface at Belmont's pony track, located just to the northeast of Belmont's training track. The quarter-mile pony track, which is used mostly for jogging horses, will be open seven days a week from 5:30-10:30 a.m. beginning Tuesday, Dec. 6. "Modern synthetic surfaces have a wide range of applications for horsemen and track operators alike, and we look forward to working with the product every day and in all seasons at Belmont Park," said Glen Kozak, NYRA Senior...

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Where Are They Now: Ninety One Assault

Lousiana-bred Ninety One Assault (Artie Schiller) was a bit of a hometown hero at Fair Grounds, where he scored seven of his eight lifetime victories, including three stakes wins for trainer Tom Morley. However, he was also a familiar face in New York as well, calling Belmont home for part of the year. The hard-knocking gelding was a family favorite for Morley, his wife Maggie Wolfendale and their two daughters, Grace and Willow. So, when it came time for him to retire, there was no question that he would remain...

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2023 Belmont Fall Meet Will Again Be Run At Aqueduct

The New York Racing Association has released its 2023 racing schedule, which will include a return to Aqueduct for the traditional fall Belmont meet. NYRA first moved the Belmont fall meet to Aqueduct this year so that tunnels could be built that would provide access to the infield. In 2023, moving the Belmont fall meet will allow for reconstruction of the three Belmont racing surfaces. The 28-day Belmont at the Big A fall meet will open on Thursday, Sept. 14 and continue through Sunday, Oct. 29. Live racing will be...

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Breeders' Cup at Belmont? No Timetable, But Edging Closer to Reality

The topic of Belmont Park hosting the Breeders' Cup resurfaced again Monday with the public release of a letter from Breeders' Cup executives to the New York Racing Association (NYRA) to "reaffirm the strong desire" to return the event to Belmont "as soon as the potential infrastructure projects we discussed are complete." That undated letter, which was attached as part of a Nov. 7 pro-Breeders' Cup press release issued by the "We Are NY Horse Racing" coalition of small businesses, labor unions, non-profits, and trade associations, did not include any...

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NY Commission Expresses Frustration About Endless Lasix Studies

The New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC) took a unanimous voice vote on Thursday to request an exemption from the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act Authority (HISA) that will allow the continued use of Lasix in races other than those for 2-year-olds and in stakes. Asking for the exemption also opts states into a three-year study that will be conducted by HISA that is designed to shape future federal Lasix policies, possibly as early as 2026. The vote itself was hardly a surprise. Not applying for the exemption would have...

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Skims Becomes Newest Graded Winner For Frankel in Sands Point

Skims (GB) (Frankel {GB}) took over on the GII Sands Point S. turn under Hall of Famer John Velazquez and kept finding from there to turn the tables on Vergara (Noble Mission {GB})--who beat her by a head last time in the Dueling Grounds Oaks--while giving her superstar sire yet another graded winner. Victorious in her first two turf routes, the Andrew Rosen homebred was subsequently third in the GII Appalachian S. at Keeneland in April and again in Belmont's GII Wonder Again S. over yielding sod June 9. Fifth...

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Signator Becomes 50th Rising Star for Tapit

Signator (Tapit) earned the 'TDN Rising Star' tag with a good-looking score at second asking at Belmont at the Big A. A $1.7-million OBSAPR acquisition after breezing in :20 4/5 for Eddie Woods, he finished up well to be second on debut going six panels at this oval Sept. 16 and was hammered down to 3-5 favoritism to go one better here. Away a beat slow from his inside stall, the gray tugged his way up the fence, sitting near the back of the tightly bunched group. Saving ground off...

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Poll Shows New Yorkers Support Belmont Construction

We Are NY Horse Racing, a coalition of small businesses, labor unions, non-profits, and trade associations, released a public opinion poll that found 68% of voters statewide and 75% of voters on Long Island support using state bonding authority to construct new horse racing facilities at Belmont Park. In addition, New Yorkers view horse racing favorably by a 3-to-1 margin. In 2022, legislation was introduced for the first time that would allow the New York Racing Association to finance the modernization of Belmont Park through state-backed bonds. "Constructing a new...

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33 Stakes on Tap For Aqueduct Fall Meet

The 2022 fall meet at Aqueduct Racetrack will offer 33 stakes, 10 of them graded events, worth a total of $6.375 million. As previously announced, the Belmont Park fall meet will be held at Aqueduct due to the construction of vehicular and pedestrian tunnels designed to provide access to the Belmont Park infield. The Belmont at the Big A meet will begin on Thursday, Sept. 15 and continue through Sunday, Oct. 30. Following the conclusion of Belmont at the Big A., the 29-day Aqueduct fall meet will run from Friday,...

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New First-Turn Spa Seating, Belmont Infield Horse Tunnel Proposed

A first-turn seating expansion at Saratoga Race Course and the addition of a 400-foot long infield horse tunnel at Belmont Park were among the improvement projects floated by New York Racing Association (NYRA) executives on Thursday. Three new backstretch dormitories at Saratoga are also on NYRA's to-do list, according to a preview of possible 2023 projects discussed at the Sep. 1 Franchise Oversight Board (FOB) meeting. The FOB represents the interests of NYRA's state-owned properties, and that board still must formally approve the projects if and when NYRA submits a...

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Dams of Nest, Mo Donegal Entered In Book 1 at Keeneland November

Marion Ravenwood (A.P. Indy), dam of multiple Grade I-winning sophomore filly Nest (Curlin); and Callingmissbrown (Pulpit), dam of Mo Donegal (Uncle Mo)--who beat his stablemate Nest in this year's GI Belmont S.--have been entered in Keeneland's November Breeding Stock Sale to sell on opening day, Nov. 7, during Book 1. Marion Ravenwood is carrying a full-sibling to Nest, while Callingmissbrown is carrying a full to the Belmont winner, who also took the GII Remsen S. last year and GII Wood Memorial S. in April. Ashview Farm, agent, will consign both...

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NYRA CEO Dave O'Rourke Talks Winterizing Belmont On Writers' Room

It was announced last week that in order to properly renovate and reimagine Belmont Park for 2023 and beyond, the New York Racing Association would be shifting this year's fall meet at Belmont to Aqueduct, and Wednesday, NYRA CEO Dave O'Rourke joined the TDN Writers' Room presented by Keeneland as the Green Group Guest of the Week to discuss the process and future ramifications of this major capital investment in Big Sandy. O'Rourke said that the main objective of the construction project is the building of two major tunnels to...

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