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Canada Day At Summerside A Success


Published: July 2, 2009 5:28 pm ET

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Trot Insider has spoken with Barry Biggar of the Prince County Horseman's Club and Standardbred Canada breeder director (Atlantic region) George Riley in regard to the highly successful card of racing which went forward on Canada Day at Summerside Raceway.

Twelve dashes comprised the card in front of a packed house. All reports indicate that fans were five-deep along the rail and customers and horsemen alike are excited for the prospects of the revitalized Summerside venue.

"The new grandstand is still not complete, but the upper level was filled and people were wagering in droves," Biggar told Trot Insider. "We've had some terrific feedback from those that fancied the buffet. On the racing side of things, horsemen were very pleased with the ship-in barn, which is beautiful."

"I've been to every track east of Toronto, and I don't want to sound like I'm being biased, but I believe that it is the best," said Riley, who explained that the grandstand is expected to be ready for early August. He also stated that the new barns and horsemen's area is top notch, offering anybody that races the best in facilities. Riley said that the progress that was made leading up to Canada Day, and the way yesterday's card went over with the public gives much optimism for the future of the historic facility.

"In the past, there just wasn't the extra capital available to maintain facilities up to the level that everybody wanted," Biggar explained. "The investment by the government and the Atlantic Lottery Corporation has been a great one, and we are now seeing that investment begin to truly pay off."

The Canada Day card produced an overall handle of over $20,000. Both Biggar and Riley state that the handle could have been significantly higher if all infrastructures had been in place. "If the bottom level of the grandstand would have been complete and there would have been more machines for people to wager at, there would've been a much higher handle for the card --- that goes without saying. People were there enjoying the racing and the demand was there in full," Biggar said.

Biggar, who raced three horses during the card, said the track was in good shape after having taken much rain for a handful of days leading up to Canada Day. "We had a race that went in [1:] 56. The track was in good shape and we're all looking forward to getting out there again and putting on some good racing for the public."

Click here to view the charted lines from Summerside's Canada Day card.

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