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Maryland Lifts Ban on Delaware, NY Shippers

The Maryland Jockey Club announced June 8 that it has lifted the restrictions on horses planning to ship to Pimlico Race Course, Laurel Park or the Bowie Training Center from Belmont Park, Aqueduct and Delaware Park.

Sod Planted for New Laurel Park Turf Course

The Maryland Jockey Club said the installation of sod for the Laurel Park turf course began May 31 under the supervision of turf superintendent Robbie Mitten.

Pimlico Spring Meet Begins April 20

Live racing on the Maryland circuit shifts to historic Pimlico Race Course April 20 for the spring meet. The headline event of the eight-week stand is the 130th running of the $1 million Preakness Stakes (gr. I), the middle jewel of the VISA Triple Crown, on May 21.

Maryland Industry Issues Plan to Revitalize Racing

The Maryland racing industry has signed off on a plan to revitalize the sport should legislators approve alternative gaming. Though efforts to win approval for racetrack slot machines have stalled in recent years, a key legislator said the plan represents progress.

HRTV to Air on Comcast in Baltimore Area

The Maryland Jockey Club signal will appear on local Comcast systems beginning Jan. 14 as part of a digital sports package involving HorseRacing TV.

MJC Announces Final 2004 Handle Figures

With eleven fewer racing days than in 2003, the Maryland Jockey Club announced its total handle declined 4% in 2004. All sources handle totaled $868.1 million as compared to $905.7 million from the same period in 2003. The daily average handle from all sources decreased 2% from $3.48 million to $3.41million. For the fourth consecutive year, the daily average handle on the export signal increased, this time by 4%.

Pimlico Meet Extended; Laurel to Reopen Dec. 26

The Maryland Jockey Club announced Oct. 8 that it intends to extend the current Pimlico meet until mid-December, with the re-opening of Laurel Park scheduled for Dec. 26. The current Pimlico stand was tentatively scheduled to end on Nov. 2.

Retired Rider Mario Verge to Join MJC Office

Mario Verge, who retired from riding during the Pimlico spring meet, has joined the Maryland Jockey Club racing office. The 39-year old won 2,118 races in his 23-year career for purses exceeding $31 million.

Magna Moves Gagliano to Maryland Executive Post

Jim Gagliano, who joined Magna Entertainment Corp. more than two years ago, has been appointed executive vice president of Maryland racing operations for MEC, majority owner of Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course under the Maryland Jockey Club banner.

Deal Allows for Temporary Simulcasts in Maryland

Maryland's Thoroughbred interests have reached agreement with Rosecroft Raceway, a harness track in southern Maryland, on a 90-day resumption of Thoroughbred simulcasting at Rosecroft and the return of night simulcasting at Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course.

MJC Sets House Rules on Jockey Ads at Pimlico

The Maryland Jockey Club issued a list of house rules Tuesday for any jockey wishing to wear advertisements in races at Pimlico. Competitors of current sponsors enlisted by Triple Crown Productions and the MJC will not be allowed, which is similar to the rules in place at Churchill Downs for the Kentucky Derby (gr. I).

Rosecroft Simulcasting Cut; Costs Cited

Rosecroft Raceway will not be permitted to offer simulcast wagering of Thoroughbred races effective April 19, according to a statement released Friday evening jointly by the Maryland Jockey Club, the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Assoc. and the Maryland Horse Breeders' Assoc.

Preakness Media Award Winners Announced

Winners of the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) media awards for coverage of last year's race includes Sean Clancy for his recap that appeared in Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred and photographer Jeff Snyder for a photo that ran in The Blood-Horse's Preakness results issue.

MJC President Cleared in Probe of Campaign Contributions

Joe DeFrancis, president of the Maryland Jockey Club, and Maryland Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. did not violate campaign finance laws by arranging more than $200,000 in donations to a national organization headed by Miller, Maryland's state prosecutor said Monday.

Purse Cuts Possible In Maryland After Difficult Year

Tough times and uncertainty mark the passing of one year and the beginning of another in Maryland racing. Joe De Francis, president and CEO of the Maryland Jockey Club, calls 2003 "the toughest year we've had in the last decade." And the battle for relief in the form of slot machines has taken more unexpected twists and turns.

Progress Made in Pimlico Barn Closure Dispute

The first indication a deal might be worked out to keep Pimlico's stable open for the winter emerged Tuesday. Meetings took place between horsemen's leadership and track management in a Baltimore office and between horsemen's leadership and angry Pimlico backstretch workers in the Pimlico track kitchen.

Maryland Horsemen Seek To Block MJC Simulcasts

Maryland Horsemen Seek To Block MJC Simulcasts

In the continuing dispute over the Maryland Jockey Club's closing of the Pimlico stables for the winter, the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association has voted to try to stop the MJC from simulcasting out-of-state races.

MJC Denies Racism Charge in Heated Commission Meeting

In an explosive meeting marked by a commissioner's expletive-filled response to charges of discrimination, the Maryland Racing Commission voted Oct. 14 to review the Maryland Jockey Club's documentation for evicting trainers and closing the Pimlico stable for the winter.

Stakes Coordinator Rollinson Leaving MJC

Stakes coordinator David Rollinson will be leaving the Maryland Jockey Club to concentrate on his bloodstock business specializing in acquiring and managing European Thoroughbreds for American racing.

Preakness Day Handle Down 9.5% From Last Year

Total handle on the May 17 Preakness Stakes Day program at Pimlico Race Course topped $60 million for the third consecutive year, but it was down 9.5% from last year, according to figures released May 21 by the Maryland Jockey Club.

Magna Says Maryland, Preakness Top Priorities

The Maryland Racing Commission voted unanimously Nov. 13 to approve Magna Entertainment Corp. as majority owner of Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course, turning the spotlight on Magna to begin fulfilling its promise for Maryland racing. The Preakness Stakes, second leg of the Triple Crown, is a big part of the equation.

Stronach: Pimlico Should Be Leveled, Rebuilt

Stronach: Pimlico Should Be Leveled, Rebuilt

In his first public comments about specific plans for Maryland racing, Magna Entertainment chairman Frank Stronach said the company will tear down Pimlico Race Course and build a new track on the same site.

Maryland Track Deal Figures to Have Broad Impact

Magna Entertainment has plans to transform Maryland's premier Thoroughbred racetracks into "destination entertainment centers," and apparently expand off-track wagering in the state. At this time, though, officials are reluctant to discuss details.

MJC Attorney: No Deal Made for Sale of Racetracks

A Maryland Jockey Club attorney told Maryland legislators June 25 that no deal has been made to sell Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course to Magna Entertainment, and that any deal would have to clear major regulatory hurdles.

Security Policies Set for Preakness at Pimlico

The Maryland Jockey Club has joined local, state, and federal law enforcement and other government agencies to develop and implement a thorough series of safety and security procedures May 17-18 for the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes and Preakness Stakes, respectively.

Maryland Purse Supplement Less Than Expected

The expected $4.5-million purse supplement for Maryland racing has apparently shrunk to $3 million, according to Mike Hopkins, acting executive director of the Maryland Racing Commission.

Prospects for Maryland Purse Subsidy Seem Bright

Thoroughbred and Standardbred racing in Maryland probably will receive an infusion of about $4.5 million in the fiscal year beginning July 1 as the result of a recent flurry of activity in the General Assembly.

Maryland Factions Strike Deal; 'Special' Suspended

The Maryland Jockey Club and the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association reached a four-year deal Feb. 27 that resolves conflict that has lingered for years over racing dates and stakes schedules. As part of the deal, though, the grade I Pimlico Special will be suspended for 2002.

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