Dates Slashed In Illinois

Published: August 28, 2015 12:36 pm EDT

Reports from Illinois indicate that the state's already diminished live harness racing calendar is about to take another substantial reduction.

An update posted to the Illinois Harness Horsemen's Association website states that the Illinois Racing Board approved a motion by Maywood Park to drop the remainder of its Thursday and Friday night cards starting October 8. This reduction equated to 22 dates, and would reduce the track's overall live seasonal race date total to 74.

"Because of this ruling, hundreds of horseman, racetrack employees and state employees will lose their jobs," IHHA Executive Director Tony Somone said in a statement. "Maywood Park Racetrack testified that they would save $165,000 in the last quarter of the year by doing this. Horsemen will lose the opportunity to race for approximately $1 million during that time period and hundreds of jobs will be lost.

"Maywood and Balmoral Park are currently operating under the jurisdiction of the bankruptcy court and before this Racing Board decision becomes final, it must be approved by that court. Stay tuned."

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