Hurricane Dennis heads toward U.S. mainland.

Hurricane Dennis heads toward U.S. mainland.

The Weather

Calder's Summit of Speed Postponed Until Sunday Due to Hurricane

Edited press release
Due to power and telephone outages caused by Hurricane Dennis-related storms in the area, Calder Race Course is postponing its Summit of Speed card until Sunday, July 10 with a first-race post time of 12:50 p.m.

Calder president Ken Dunn made the decision early Saturday morning. Electric power and telephone service were restored at Calder around 9 a.m. Saturday, and the track was planning to be open for full-card simulcasting Saturday.

Calder suffered no physical damage overnight. Southeast Florida was not in Hurricane Dennis' direct path, but related storms powered through the region throughout the night.

The Summit of Speed is Calder's $1.9 million day of sprint stakes, featuring eight stakes and the country's top sprint specialists, including the undefeated Lost in the Fog, Madcap Escapade, and others.

"It is too good of a card to try to run it under these conditions," said Dunn. "We'll combine it with ItalianFest (special promotion) on Sunday."

Both the main facility and stable area were affected by the outages.

"We had to consider the horses and our horsemen first. The administering of medications to horses had to be taken into account, so we had to make a decision and be able to communicate it in a timely manner to the trainers," said Dunn Saturday morning.

"We had no confirmation nor guarantee from FPL (Florida Power & Light) of when electricity would be restored. We are fortunate that it was restored fairly quickly, but by then the decision to postpone had already been made. And it was the right decision. Luckily we could remain open for simulcasting today and we have a good crowd considering the circumstances and the weather. We're estimating about 3,000 in attendance today."

Dunn also expressed the hope that fans that might have avoided coming to the track today because of poor weather will indeed attend on Sunday.

"It would have been unfair to the racing fans to hold this great race card on a day that their attention is understandably focused on the hurricane. The track here is in order and ready to go. Racing on it today would not have been a problem," he said.

In other developments:

* The entire 13-race Summit of Speed card will be run on Sunday, while Sunday's original 11-race card will be run on Monday. Likewise, the Monday card will be run on Tuesday. Therefore, no entries were taken today.

* Two non-stakes races originally carded for turf on the Summit of Speed card, the fourth and seventh races, have been taken off the grass. All efforts will be made to keep the $100,000 Calder Turf Sprint on the turf, but it will ultimately depend on rainfall between now and race time. Approximately four inches of rain have fallen at Calder since yesterday.

* As of this afternoon, all original participants - horses and jockeys - are scheduled to compete on Sunday.

* The Summit of Speed All-Stakes Pick 5 wager has been cancelled.

* The Daily Racing Form is publishing a special Sunday edition with Summit past performances.

* ItalianFest activities will go on as scheduled on Sunday, July 10.

* Calder's Handicapping Summit, a qualifying round for the National Handicapping Championship, has been postponed from Sunday, July 10 to Sunday, July 17.