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Track To Boost Purses 30 Per Cent

Published: December 16, 2015 11:52 am ET

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It’s not technically a Christmas present, but a Standardbred racetrack announced on Wednesday, December 16 that it will be raising its purses 30 per cent early in the new year.

As its new race season rapidly approaches, Miami Valley Gaming & Racing and the Ohio Harness Horsemen's Association has jointly announced a 30 per cent purse increase, which will surely attract an abundance of quality racing interests to the upcoming meet that is scheduled to kick off on January 9.

"It is a pleasure to see the loyalties of our Ohio based horsemen rewarded,” horsemen association representative Brett Merkle stated. "It is refreshing to know our purses double as soon as Miami Valley’s meet opens; it really gives the horsemen a serious race program to train towards."

Helen Carlo, MVG's racing operations manager, said, "Our third consecutive year of higher purses is driven by the continued success of our property's VLT revenues. It is a pleasure to see our Ohio-based horsemen rewarded."

Veteran race maker Gregg Kiedel wasted no time in drawing the framework for Miami Valley’s racing program. A total of 30 late-closing events for a wide variety of horses are scheduled throughout the season, which will contribute to the competitive overnight racing that Miami Valley fans are already accustomed to over the lightning fast five-eighths-mile oval.

Other highlights include the $35,000 finals of the James K. Hackett Memorials for Ohio-sired sophomore pacing colts and fillies, multiple $40,000 divisions of first-leg Ohio Sire Stakes races for three-year-old pacers and trotters, and a pair of $100,000-plus Grand Circuit races for the continent's best pacing trotting mares on closing day.

In addition to late-closer series and stakes action, day-in and day-out overnights will strike a balance between Ohio-restricted and Open opportunities.

A ‘dress rehearsal’ session, including non-betting qualifying races, will prime the action on Wednesday (Jan. 6) with a 2:05 p.m. first-race post time. The track will be open for training hours from Jan. 4 to Jan. 8 from 7:30-11:30 a.m.

(With files from Miami Valley)

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