The new Saratoga

Updated: July 18, 2012, 5:28 PM ET
By Paul Moran | Special to ESPN.com

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- It is the best of times at the Spaaaaa.

Historic Saratoga Race Course, the nation's oldest, most celebrated and revered venue of thoroughbred competition will launch a 40-day meeting on Friday. (OK, everyone in the civilized world already knows this.) Purses will be astronomical, fueled by revenue from a three-level casino some 200 miles to the south, at Aqueduct, which since its opening late last year has exceeded expectations and -- despite the best efforts ...

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