Canterbury to Begin Meet With 10% Purse Hike

Canterbury Park in Minnesota will open May 14 with a 10% increase in purses. The daily average will be $138,000, the highest since the track reopened in 1995.

The purse hike was announced jointly May 10 by Canterbury Park, the Minnesota Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, and the Minnesota Quarter Horse Racing Association. The 68-day meet, which runs through Sept. 6, offers Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing.

"We're thrilled to be able to enact this increase prior to the season," Canterbury president Randy Sampson said in a release. "Our card club continues to flourish, and that is good news for not only for our horsemen, but for all the people in Minnesota that do equine-related business with Canterbury Park. This purse increase validates the legislation that allowed us to open the card club, and in turn demonstrates the kind of impact the passage of (racino legislation) could have on the horse industry in Minnesota."

Canterbury for the last few years has lobbied for alternative gaming. The track is located a few miles from a large Indian casino.

The 2004 meet is highlighted by the July 17 Claiming Crown, which features six races worth a total of $550,000. Minnesota-breds will be in the spotlight in stakes action Aug. 22, when divisional championships will be held.