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Friday, May 24, 2013
Santa Anita, Del Mar to pick up extra racing dates

Associated Press

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Santa Anita and Del Mar will pick up extra racing dates in 2014 after the closure of Betfair Hollywood Park in December.

The California Horse Racing Board assigned dates for the next two years at its meeting in Sacramento, with Santa Anita and Del Mar receiving the bulk of extra dates.

Santa Anita's winter-spring meet will begin on Dec. 26 as usual and run until July 6, 2014, instead of closing as it usually has in April. The track's fall meet will run from Sept. 26 to Nov. 2.

Del Mar, located north of San Diego, will run from July 16 to Sept. 3 this year, and have a new fall meet from Nov. 5 to Dec. 7, 2014. Fairplex Park will run its usual meet from Sept. 4-23 during the Los Angeles County Fair.

Los Alamitos asked the racing board on Thursday for permission to host two weeks of thoroughbred racing from Dec. 11-21, 2014. The track in Orange County usually conducts year-round quarter horse racing; it hasn't had a meet for thoroughbreds since the Orange County Fair in 1991.

Still to be decided is where more than 1,000 horses displaced by Hollywood Park's impending closure will be stabled.

Officials from Santa Anita, Del Mar, Fairplex and Los Alamitos and three horsemen's organizations plan to meet next week to discuss options that include off-track stabling. Since the late 1980s, the cost of off-track stabling has been offset by a portion of mutuel wagering from off-track betting locations.

However, the amount of money from that fund has been depleted with the increase in Internet and telephone wagering in the last 10 years.