Laurel Park

Sheldon Russell Set For Surgery

Maryland's leading rider this season Sheldon Russell will undergo have surgery to repair an injury to his right foot suffered in a pre-race spill Sept. 9 at Laurel Park. The 34-year-old received the news Monday after visiting Dr. Jacob Wisbeck, an orthopedic surgeon specializing in foot and ankle injuries at MedStar Health in Timonium, Md. Russell said a date for surgery won't be determined before a follow-up visit Sept. 20. "What we found out is it's the main bone in the foot and needs to be addressed," Russell said. "If...

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Training Over New Main Track at Laurel to Start Aug. 10

The extensive, expensive, and months-delayed installment of the new main track from the base up at Laurel Park is now close enough to completion that executives with The Stronach Group (TSG) have greenlighted Aug. 8 as the move-in date for horses and Aug. 10 as the first day of training. Speaking via videoconference, Steve Koch, the senior vice president of racing for TSG, which owns both Laurel and Pimlico Race Course, said July 28 that the "whole oval really is an entirely new racetrack." Years of piecemeal repair jobs failed...

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Pimlico's Weekend Turf Races Moved to Main Track

With the track renovations at Laurel Park ongoing and the season extended nearly three months at Pimlico Race Course to compensate, all of the upcoming weekend's grass racing at Pimlico has been moved to the main track. The time will be used for enhanced maintenance to prepare the grass course for extended use. There were originally four turf races scheduled for Friday and two for Saturday, with none scheduled on Sunday. All races over the weekend will be held on the dirt. "As a result of our extended race meet...

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MJC Hopeful Horses Can Return to Laurel in August; Racing to Continue at Pimlico

Maryland Jockey Club and its parent company, 1/ST RACING (The Stronach Group), is hopeful horses will be able to return to Laurel Park the first week in August barring any delays in the ongoing renovation of the dirt surface, but even if they do, racing will likely continue at Pimlico Race Course in August until the Maryland State Fair at Timonium meet begins. An update on the project and a timeline were discussed June 14 during a Zoom community meeting hosted by the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association. It was also...

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Massive Laurel Horse Move-Out Preakness Week

Difficulties with the dirt track base repair and cushion resurfacing project at Laurel Park continue to mount, with the loose-ended timetable for the work now expected to extend at least until the start of July. Executives with The Stronach Group (TSG), which owns both Laurel and Pimlico Race Course, said during a Friday tele-meeting that they now need to pause work on the problematic and expensive project at Laurel until management can relocate of all horses stabled at Laurel to other facilities in Maryland. This news was delivered two weeks...

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June Now Best Guess for Laurel's Main Track to Be Fixed

Mounting problems that have forced the closure of the main dirt track at Laurel Park are now tentatively anticipated to be fixed by the start of June. But difficulties related to the sourcing and testing of materials for the base and cushion are keeping the Maryland Jockey Club (MJC) from setting an exact timetable for the return of racing and training at its primary venue. On Thursday, the Maryland Racing Commission (MRC) met at Laurel for the board's first in-person monthly meeting since the onset of the pandemic. But Laurel's...

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Laurel Resurfacing Project Begins

Edited Press Release The reconstruction of the Laurel Park dirt surface began in earnest April 17 as heavy machinery began removing the cushion from the base from the rail out. Maryland Jockey Club Track Superintendent Chris Bosley said that over the next several days the cushion will be removed and the base will be inspected to determine if there are any deficiencies. Bosley, who has been in contact with Glen Kozak, who oversees racing surfaces for the New York Racing Association, said the MJC is in the process of locating...

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Laurel Weekend Cards Cancelled Due to Ongoing Track Issues, Racing Will Move to Pimlico

Live racing will be cancelled from Saturday, Apr. 17 through Monday, Apr. 19 at Laurel Park due to the ongoing evaluation of the main track surface conditions, the Maryland Jockey Club and 1/ST RACING announced Thursday. As part of regular track maintenance, the MJC identified Apr. 14 that the main track had not responded sufficiently to wintertime cushion repairs. Gallops will be allowed during an abbreviated training schedule Friday, Apr. 16. Due to the uncertainty of the timeline to rehabilitate the main track surface cushion at Laurel Park, 1/ST RACING...

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Laurel to Add Racing Days to Spring Meet

The Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association and Maryland Jockey Club announced the addition of racing days over the next several months to make up for multiple cancellations in the winter and early spring because of weather conditions and equine herpesvirus (EHV-1) restrictions. MJC earlier announced that the Spring Stakes Spectacular program originally scheduled for Apr. 17 at Laurel Park has been moved to the following Apr. 24. Racing will be held April 17-19 instead of Apr. 15-18. Extra races listed for Thursday, Apr. 15, will move to Saturday, Apr. 17, while...

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MATCH Series to Return in 2021

The Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred Championships (MATCH) Series, which was forced to go on hiatus in 2020 because of regional COVID-19 restrictions, will return this year under a two-state schedule put together by horsemen and racetracks in Maryland and Virginia to bridge the gap until the full Series is restored in 2022. The Series, the only one of its kind in racing, will run from May 14 at Pimlico Race Course through Dec. 26 at Laurel Park, and will feature 24 stakes--20 of them in Maryland and four at Colonial Downs in...

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Friday Racing at Laurel Cancelled Due to EHV-1

As Laurel Park continues to face lock downs due to EHV-1, the Maryland track cancelled Friday's nine-race program as a number of horses entered on the Mar. 12 card are now under quarantine. The Maryland Jockey Club will try to have the remaining horses--that aren't under quarantine--from Friday's program fill cards on Saturday and Sunday. Laurel will remain open for simulcasting Friday. The Stronach 5, Friday's national wager, was to feature two races from Laurel. It has been postponed to Mar. 19 with a carryover of $154,931.   Statement issued...

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Laurel Locks Down Over EHV-1; Kentucky Urges Caution On Ship-Ins

Four barns at Laurel Park were placed under quarantine and shipping out was barred for horses stabled at Maryland's two Thoroughbred tracks Mar. 9 after a symptomatic horse at Laurel tested positive for equine herpesvirus type 1 (EHV-1) and was removed to a veterinary facility. On a national scale, active cases of the highly contagious respiratory disease are being monitored in several states right now, including in Florida at the World Equestrian Center in Ocala. On Mar. 7, the Kentucky Department of Agriculture state veterinarian's office issued written guidance related...

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