2003/2004 Thoroughbred Stakes Schedule Announced at SHRP

The 2003/2004 Sam Houston Race Park Winter/Spring Thoroughbred meeting will begin on Thursday, October 23. The 93-day meeting will offer in excess of $110,000 in purses each day and will feature 37 stakes races with more than $2.1 million in purses. The northwest Houston racetrack’s tenth Thoroughbred meeting will conclude on Saturday, April 10, 2004.

Robert L. Bork, president and general manager, is pleased to announce that the Texas Thoroughbred Association and Sam Houston Race Park will continue their long-term association with Texas Champions Day. One of the premier days of racing in the state, Texas Champions Day has been moved forward on the Sam Houston Race Park schedule to Saturday, November 15. This exceptional day in Texas Thoroughbred racing will offer nine stakes races with $650,000 in purses.

Some notable changes in the upcoming Thoroughbred meeting will take place on Saturday, January 17 and Saturday, April 10. The $100,000 MAXXAM Gold Cup is set for January 17, but two additional stakes have been added that evening, the $50,000 Sam Houston Sprint Handicap and the $50,000 Sam Houston Distaff. Sam Houston Race Park will host the Texas Thoroughbred Association Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet that evening and wanted to have a strong racing card. Additionally, the $200,000 Connally Breeders' Cup Turf, held traditionally in February, has been moved to April 10.

"There were several reasons for moving the Connally to our final night of the meeting," said Sam Houston Race Park racing secretary, Eric Johnston. "We have always competed with the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo in February, one of the biggest events in Houston. We would like to attract more fans and media attention to this prestigious race and feel that the April date will be beneficial in that regard. Furthermore, we will follow the Mervin Muniz Stakes (formerly the Explosive Bid Handicap) at the Fair Grounds and may be able to attract even more nationally prominent turf horses to Sam Houston Race Park."

The Sam Houston Race Park racing office is currently accepting stall applications and have printed the first condition book covering races from October 23 - November 19.

The stable area will open on October 8 and horses can return to the racetrack for training on October 11. Horsemen who would like a copy of the Winter/Spring Thoroughbred Stakes book may contact the Racing Office at 1-800-807-RACE or visit the Sam Houston Race Park web site at www.shrp.com.

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