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Harness Racing A Hit In Osoyoos

Published: August 18, 2014 1:52 pm ET

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The first ever racing card featuring quarter-horse, thoroughbred and harness racing at Desert Park in Osoyoos, B.C. drew thousands of people to the interior B.C. oval.

As Trot Insider reported last week, the push to conduct exhibition racing came from Harness Racing B.C. in an attempt to find new summer venues. With dates cut at Fraser Downs, the organization looked to a track some four hours away and struck a deal to conduct two exhibition races. Those races were part of a card that could possibly be a first in Canada with three breeds all competing over a traditional thoroughbred surface.

The local exhibition society was thrilled with the close to 2,000 people that attended Saturday's card as the Desert Park Exhibition Society seeks to increase its profile in B.C. horse racing.

"We would like to be a player in the B.C. horse racing industry,” society chair Carol Youngberg told

The harness racing portion took place at the end of the card so that the track could be packed down and provide a firmer surface than that preferred by the quarter horses and thoroughbreds.

A photo gallery from the racing action at Desert Park is available here.

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