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The 'Big M' Adds Integrity Clause

Published: January 15, 2019 10:20 am ET

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On Tuesday, January 15, officials with the Meadowlands Racetrack announced that the track has added a new integrity clause to the conditions for some Meadowlands-administered stakes.

The clause appears below.

…..any owner who participates in a Meadowlands Stake or Early Closing event (with added money greater than $25,000) with a trainer who has an outstanding Class 1, Class 2 or TC02 positive test having occurred on or after January 1, 2019 and under appeal in any jurisdiction will be declared ineligible to participate in any Meadowlands Stake or Early Closing event for 12 months following the conviction if such trainer is subsequently found guilty relating to the Class 1, Class 2 or TC02 positive test.

The release goes on to state that, “It is important to understand the gravity of this clause. Simply stated, if a trainer appeals the penalty for a listed offence and continues to race while on a stay; if that penalty is upheld those owners that raced horses in stakes with the trainer in question would be excluded from racing any of their horses in any of the Meadowlands' stakes for one year from the date of the decision on the appeal.”

The contents of the Meadowlands’ release appear below.


Meadowlands Announces 2019 Stakes

The Meadowlands Racetrack' 2019 Grand Circuit stakes schedule will offer more than $13 million in purses, led by harness racing's most coveted prize, the 94th edition of the $1 million Hambletonian.

The Meadowlands will again be the stage for two of the sport's biggest events. The track's signature Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace ($700,000e) headlines a card worth an estimated $2.5 million on Saturday, July 13. ‘The Greatest Day In Harness Racing,’ the $3 million Hambletonian Day extravaganza featuring an entire day of major Grand Circuit stakes, ends the ‘Championship Meet’ on Saturday, August 3.

With the help of our generous sponsors, all of The Meadowlands marquee stakes, which include many of the most sought after trophies for each division of trotters and pacers, will return in 2019. Nominations for those stakes close on February 15, 2019.

The proposed stakes schedule remains contingent upon the pending purse subsidy having been approved by the New Jersey Legislature prior to the February 15 payment deadline and is subject to revision.

The Meadowlands remains committed to racing integrity, adding a clause to the conditions for all Meadowlands administered stakes under the ‘Rules’ heading that states:

"...any owner who participates in a Meadowlands Stake or Early Closing event (with added money greater than $25,000) with a trainer who has an outstanding Class 1, Class 2 or TC02 positive test having occurred on or after January 1, 2019 and under appeal in any jurisdiction will be declared ineligible to participate in any Meadowlands Stake or Early Closing event for 12 months following the conviction if such trainer is subsequently found guilty relating to the Class 1, Class 2 or TC02 positive test."

It is important to understand the gravity of this clause. Simply stated, if a trainer appeals the penalty for a listed offence and continues to race while on a stay; if that penalty is upheld those owners that raced horses in stakes with the trainer in question would be excluded from racing any of their horses in any of The Meadowlands' stakes for one year from the date of the decision on the appeal.

"Clean racing has been and remains a top priority at The Meadowlands," said Meadowlands President Jeff Gural. "The Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) shares our passion and has included virtually the same language in their stakes."

Complete information including schedules, conditions and nomination forms may be downloaded from The Meadowlands website. Questions should be directed to the racing office at 201-842-5130.



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