Nat Wess, a longtime presence on the racing scene in California and Minnesota, retired December 31, 2009, completing a 45-year career in thoroughbred racing.
More than 200 horses have been nominated for the 2009 Claiming Crown series to be run on July 25, Canterbury Park announced.
The Claiming Crown will return to Canterbury Park Aug. 2, 2008, with new conditions designed to increase participation in the event.
The 2007 Old National Bank Claiming Crown, which will be held at Ellis Park for the first time Aug. 4, has received a record number of nominations.
The Claiming Crown, to be held for the first time at Ellis Park in western Kentucky, has been scheduled for Aug. 4, officials said.
Organizers hope to spark some new interest in this year's Claiming Crown, a $600,000 series of seven starter allowance stakes set for July 15 at Canterbury Park.
In an NTRA teleconference call with members of the national turf media Tuesday, Bill Slevin, owner of Lord of the Game, and Tom Tomillo, trainer of the 4-year-old Saint Ballado colt, discussed the fortuitous $10,000 December claim that so far has spawned six wins--including a grade II--and earnings of more than $300,000.
As organizers of the Claiming Crown gear up for the sixth edition of the event in 2004, the focus will be on obtaining sponsorships and getting the races into more wagering outlets around the country. Meanwhile, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association has signed on as a sponsor of the event.
The Claiming Crown is scheduled to return to Canterbury Park in 2004. In five runnings to date of the event, Canterbury has hosted it four times.
For the National Thoroughbred Racing Association and the racing industry, the phrase "strength in numbers" can apply to sponsors, the wagering public, legislative clout, and even movie theaters.
In Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships style, a charter flight carrying 18 Thoroughbreds pointing for the Aug. 4 Claiming Crown is scheduled to arrive at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport Sunday afternoon.
Canterbury Park, the Minnesota racetrack that hit rock-bottom in the early 1990s, could have its best meet since its "second coming." Officials report heightened interest in the Shakopee track's racing program, which this year will offer $120,000 per day in purses.
Some changes have been made to this year's Claiming Crown, scheduled for Aug. 4 at Canterbury Park. There will be one less race, but the same amount of purse money, and a new eligibility requirement organizers hope will generate more nominations for the event.
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