ARCADIA, Calif. — Racing is underway at Santa Anita for the first time since it was stopped nearly a month ago following the deaths of 22 horses.
Discrete Stevie B, the 8-5 favorite, won the first race on the main dirt track Friday under jockey Tiago Pereira.
The race was the first at the Arcadia, California, track since March 3. The main dirt surface was inspected and renovated during the nearly monthlong shutdown that followed the deaths of 22 horses since the winter meet began on Dec. 26.
The card includes eight races that are being closely watched by the racing industry and the general public concerned about the safety of the horses.
The biggest change in place Friday is an immediate reduction in the allowable dosage of the anti-bleeding medication known as Lasix.
A proposed rule limiting the use of a whip during races still needs approval by the California Horse Racing Board as well as a legal review by the state government.
ARCADIA, Calif. — Anticipating approval by the California Horse Racing Board, Santa Anita plans to reopen for live racing on Friday for the first time since it was shut down following the deaths of 22 horses.
The track on Sunday issued a revised stakes schedule that includes the $600,000 Santa Anita Handicap to be run April 6, the same day as the $1 million Santa Anita Derby.
The CHRB is to meet on Thursday to consider new safety and medication rules that Santa Anita, Golden Gate Fields and the Thoroughbred Owners of California agreed to on March 16.
Racing has been suspended at the track since March 5 after 22 horses suffered fatal injuries since Dec. 26. Limited training is being allowed on the main dirt track while testing of the surface and new rules involving safety and medication have been worked out.
If the CHRB approves and racing resumes, Santa Anita will feature the $200,000 San Luis Rey Stakes on Friday.
The Santa Anita Handicap originally was to be run on March 9.
LEXINGTON, Ky. — The Breeders’ Cup has chosen Santa Anita, Keeneland and Del Mar to host its World Championships from 2019-2021 respectively, continuing its recent venue rotation between California and Kentucky tracks.
Santa Anita will host the season-ending event for a record 10th time in Nov. 1-2, 2019. Kentucky-based Keeneland (Nov. 6-7, 2020) and Del Mar (Nov. 5-6, 2021) will present the races for the second time each after debuting as venues in 2015 and 2017 respectively.
Breeders’ Cup president and CEO Craig Fravel noted those tracks’ success with the event in a release on Friday and added we “look forward to building upon past triumphs.”
Louisville’s Churchill Downs will host races on Nov. 2-3. The last Breeders’ Cup held outside California and Kentucky was at New Jersey’s Monmouth Park in 2007.