"Night School," the racing industry's online fan education program, will return for a fourth season the evening of March 4.
This year's program will run for 40 weeks through Dec. 2. More than 40 websites in the Thoroughbred, Quarter Horse, and Standardbred industries will offer the Night School lessons, which begin each Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. Eastern time.
Organizers said they expect to top the one-million view mark in 2014. Thus far there have been more than 780,000 views of the online program.
Program creator Jeremy Plonk of Horse Player NOW will return to host Night School and be joined by Caton Bredar and Jerry Shottenkirk. Each has been with the program since its inception, and they will team this year with radio host Steve Byk.
Night School generally has operated as a live chat, but last year it sampled live audio streaming. More than half of this year's lessons are scheduled to be simulcast on SiriusXM satellite radio, joining "At the Races with Steve Byk" from 8:30-10 p.m. The radio stream is linked within the Night School lesson's chat box, or can be found on the dial at Sirius 93, XM209.
Title sponsors for 2014 include charter members the National Thoroughbred Racing Association and the American Quarter Horse Association, as well as Keeneland Select, The Stronach Group, TwinSpires.com, BRIS, Bet America, and Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort. Supporting sponsors include charter member West Point Thoroughbreds as well as Trakus.
As usual there will be late-night handicapping sessions involving live racing from Mountaineer on Tuesdays and Remington Park on Fridays.