Suffolk Downs, which opens its 109-day meeting on Saturday, will revive the Massachusetts Handicap (gr. II) with a new date this season and a reduced purse. The track's signature race was canceled two of the past three years because of financial constraints.
The 2006 Mass 'Cap is scheduled for Sept. 30, a departure from the traditional June date. The race offered a purse of $500,000 in recent years, but will be reduced to $300,000 this year.
Track officials hope to draw horses looking for a Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) prep."We are excited about bringing the Mass 'Cap back," said Bob O'Malley, Suffolk's chief operating officer. "The Mass 'Cap has a great tradition and our fans have always come out to support it. With the race scheduled five weeks before the Breeders' Cup, it will be a logical spot for some of the Classic division contenders."