Texas Racing Commission Approves Move of Sam Houston Race Park's 2008/2009 Thoroughbred Dates to Retama Park

The Texas Racing Commission has approved the request to move Sam Houston Race Park’s Thoroughbred race dates to Retama Park as a result of damage suffered by the Houston race track from Hurricane Ike last month. The Texas Racing Commission held a public meeting on October 29 at Sam Houston Race Park and agreed to relocate 43 live racing dates to Retama Park in San Antonio. The remaining 12 days scheduled for Sam Houston were cancelled and will not be rescheduled.

“We are extremely disappointed that we had to cancel the Thoroughbred meet at The Park this winter,” said Andrea Young, Chief Operating Officer, Sam Houston Race Park. “However, we are proud of efforts made by the Texas Racing Commission, the horsemen and our counterparts at Retama to preserve wintertime racing in Texas. We plan to support Retama in any way possible.”

The additional racing dates will extend Retama’s current meet, which opened August 29, through February 28, 2009, creating 78 days of live Thoroughbred racing.

The Park was forced to relocate the 2008/2009 Thoroughbred meet, which consisted of 65 live racing dates, due to damages sustained by the facility as a result of Hurricane Ike. The storm’s high winds and rainfall caused significant damage throughout the property including the facility’s grandstands, stable areas and the large infield tote board.

Hurricane Ike slammed into the Texas Gulf Coast on Friday, September 12, 2008. The hurricane forced The Park to end the 2008 American Quarter Horse meet one week early and suspend simulcast operations for more than a week.

The Park will re-open for live racing events on May 1, 2009, for the 16th American Quarter Horse meet. Later that weekend, The Park will host its annual Kentucky Derby festivities.

“We look forward to returning to live racing in the spring. We will return even bigger and better,” Young stated.

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