Whipping Rule Change At Buffalo

Published: January 17, 2020 12:29 pm EST

When the Buffalo Raceway 66-day live season begins on Wednesday, January 29, there will be changes both on and off the track.

One of the most important changes will be the stricter guidelines for the whipping rule at Buffalo Raceway that was instituted last season.

Along with previous regulations, the track has modified the rule which states "drivers shall keep a line in each hand (except as may be necessary to adjust equipment, pulling plugs, dropping blinkers) from the start of the race until the top of the stretch and both hands shall stay in front of the body and cannot be raised above the shoulder from the start of the race until the finish. Continuous whipping is prohibited."

Drivers will be subject to penalties set down by Buffalo Raceway and are not contingent on any rulings made by the New York State Gaming Commission's judges.

Other changes at the half-mile oval located at the Erie County Fairgrounds in Hamburg include the addition of 600 tons of material placed on the racing surface in the fall, new HD televisions in the clubhouse and paddock along with new self-serve wagering terminals.

The Winner's Circle Cafe will continue to serve freshly prepared food that will be delivered to your table. New menu items for 2020 include personal pan pizzas along with philly cheese steak and meatball hoagies.

The popular 'All-You-Can-Eat' buffet returns the last Saturday each month. The cost is $19.99 and includes the dinner, race program along with a $5 betting voucher and $5 in free play at Hamburg Gaming.

Racing Secretary Tom Agosti is bringing back the A, B and C classifications. He said, "We think this system works best for Western New York horsemen."

Also on the racing end, with the purse structure be the same as in 2019.

Buffalo Raceway's Director of Operations Manager Jon Cramer said, "We are excited about the improvements we've made on and off the track for the fans and horsemen and look forward to a great 2020 meet."

Horses will begin arriving on the grounds this Sunday in preparations for the campaign. Racing will be held on Wednesday evenings beginning at 5:00 p.m. while Saturday nights will have a 6:00 p.m. post. Action on Fridays will return on April 3 with a 5:00 p.m. start time.

For more information on Buffalo Raceway's 79th racing season including entries, race replays, results, upcoming promotions and the latest news, go to buffaloraceway.com.