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Update From The Meadowlands

Published: September 24, 2019 3:46 pm ET

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Major Standardbred yearling sales are on the horizon, and given that owners and horsepeople will be making important decision in the coming months, the Meadowlands Racetrack has released an update to the industry. The update pertains to the use of lasix at the track, the length of the 2020 ‘Big M’ meet, and the scheduling of some of the Meadowlands major stakes.

The contents of the Meadowlands release appear below.

With the major yearling sales coming up, we felt it necessary to have those with an interest in harness racing be made aware of a few recent developments involving The Meadowlands for 2020 listed below.

On Wednesday, September 18 at a meeting of the New Jersey Racing Commission, a request by The Meadowlands to eliminate lasix for two-year-old Standardbreds racing in New Jersey for 2020 and 2021 and for the 2021 Meadowlands Pace was rejected.

This request was opposed unanimously by the Board of Directors of the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey and by some practicing veterinarians.

It is our intention to re-submit this request within the next six to eight months once we have a better understanding of how the public is going to react to the negative press that the Thoroughbred industry has recently received.

In addition, we have been officially notified by the Monmouth Park Thoroughbreds that they intend to exercise their option to convert the surface of the racetrack and race on the Meadowlands main track from October 2 through December 5 next fall.

While it is still possible that they will reconsider based on the costs, we must assume that there will be no live harness meet next fall at the Meadowlands. Should that occur, The Meadowlands would extend the 2020 live meet beyond Hambletonian Day, racing until mid-September.

Regarding a few of the important stakes that have historically been raced during the fall meet, our intention would be to race the Kindergarten Classic Finals and TVG Finals right after the Little Brown Jug and prior to the beginning of the Lexington meet. It is as of now unclear what will be done with the Fall Freshman Final Four stakes which have annually taken place at the end of November.

In any case, we thought it important that everyone be aware of these developments so you may plan accordingly.

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