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SBOANJ Agrees To Meeting With NJRC

Published: November 13, 2008 3:46 pm ET

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The Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey has agreed to a special meeting of the New Jersey Racing Commission to address the group’s intention to pull simulcasting signal rights from Freehold Raceway.

“While we could pursue this right in federal court, we will defer to the request from the New Jersey Racing Commission and meet with them on December 3, 2008,” said SBOANJ president Tom Luchento.

“It has never been our intention to hurt Freehold Raceway, but we were pursuing one of the avenues we felt was available to us to apply pressure on Freehold and its parent company, Pennwood (Penn National Gaming and Greenwood Racing), to compel them to accept casino funds to supplement the purses at the track,” he explained. “We see no reason why Freehold should not accept the $1.6 million that is on the table for November through January and an additional $2.6 million in 2009.

“We respect the NJRC’s efforts to bring the involved parties together but still retain the right to pursue the options available to us,” he noted. “We would still argue that if Pennwood refuses the purse supplement or is unwilling to match the amount out of its own resources, the company is not fulfilling its contractual obligations to the horsemen. It puts into question Pennwood’s right to retain the license and receive racing dates in 2009.

“Without the supplement funds the survival of the hardworking horsemen at Freehold Raceway is very much in jeopardy,” he added.


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