It’s Twilight at Golden Gate Fields

Golden Gate Fields continues horse racing, closes to publicHistoric Golden Gate Fields, nestled in the backdrop of the San Francisco Bay and the iconic Golden Gate Bridge is set to conduct its final meet this summer. Champions like Cigar, Lost In The Fog, Silky Sullivan and John Henry raced at the Northern California racetrack, but that legacy will conclude in June. Parent company Stronach is closing the facility with the meet that begins June 9.

In-person sports betting would have been conducted at Golden Gate Fields if Proposition 26 had passed two years ago, but it did not, and Stronach is shutting it down effective this summer. Bay Meadows Racetrack was closed in 2008 and condos now sit on the property.

Berkeleyside.org has an in-depth article about the final meet at Golden Gate Fields.

 

Tapeta Surface at Gulfstream Park Ready in 2 Weeks

According to the Blood-horse, synthetic racing will soon join dirt racing on the wagering menu at Gulfstream Park.

The Florida track began notifying horsemen Sept. 2 that its Tapeta track, which is being installed on the outer portion of its turf course, would be ready for use in approximately two weeks. At that time, the turf course will be rested and seeded in preparation for racing later in the year.

Races scheduled for turf in the condition book will be moved to the Tapeta, which will require adjusting distances scheduled at 7 1/2 furlongs and a mile to a longer distance of a mile and 70 yards on the Tapeta.

The Tapeta was added to reduce wear on its turf course and to retain field size when rain forces races off the grass. Synthetic tracks handle inclement weather better than dirt and turf and remain fast when they drain efficiently.

Many observers feel turf-specializing horses are more likely to transfer their form to a synthetic surface than to a dirt one.

In North America, Tapeta is the surface in use at Turfway ParkGolden Gate FieldsPresque Isle Downs, and Woodbine—though it is the main track at those facilities. Tapeta is comprised of silica sand, wax, and fibers…

Racetracks Announced for NHC Tournament in Las Vegas

NTRA NHC logoLEXINGTON, Ky. (Friday, June 25, 2021) — Seven North American racetracks, including premier summer-time race meetings Del Mar, Saratoga and Monmouth Park, make up a menu from which all mandatory and optional races will be selected when the world’s richest and most prestigious handicapping tournament – the NTRA National Horseplayers Championship (NHC), presented by Racetrack Television Network, Caesars Entertainment and Bally’s Las Vegas – is contested Aug. 27-29, 2021. The official NHC 2021 racetracks are Del Mar, Ellis Park, Golden Gate Fields, Gulfstream Park, Monmouth Park, Saratoga Race Course and Woodbine Racetrack.

This year’s NHC, which includes more than 600 entries, was originally scheduled to be held February 9-11, but was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic and was rescheduled for late August. The total cash and prizes to be awarded at the 2021 NHC are estimated to be nearly $3.8 million, including an estimated $3 million in prize money.

“The menu of racetracks represents the best possible mix of quality racing and geographical diversity,” said NTRA Chief Operating Officer and NHC Tournament Director Keith Chamblin. “Del Mar and Saratoga, which on Saturday, Aug. 27, will feature six Grade I events headed by the Runhappy Travers Stakes, highlight the racing, but it will be great to introduce Ellis Park, Monmouth Park and Woodbine to NHC contest play.”

The three-day NHC requires players to make mythical $2 win and place wagers on eight mandatory races and 10 optional races on each of the first two days. The top 10 percent of players achieving the highest bankroll at the conclusion of the first two days will advance to Sunday morning’s Semi-Final round which will consist of 10 optional plays. The top 10 players following the Semi-Final round will advance to Sunday’s Final Table where they will compete in seven mandatory races to determine the National Champion. The winner will receive $800,000 and an Eclipse Award as the Horseplayer of the Year.

The NHC is the most important tournament of the year for horseplayers and is the culmination of a year-long series of NTRA-sanctioned local tournaments conducted by racetracks, casino race books, off-track betting facilities and horse racing and handicapping websites, each of which sends its top qualifiers to the national finals. There are no buy-ins to the NHC. Each year, the NHC winner joins other human and equine champions as an honoree at the Eclipse Awards. The NHC is presented by Racetrack Television Network, Caesars Entertainment and Bally’s Las Vegas.

For more information on the NHC Tour and a complete contest schedule, visit NTRA.com/nhc.

ELIGIBLE TRACKS FOR 2021 NHC IN LAS VEGAS*

Del Mar

Ellis Park

Golden Gate Fields

Gulfstream Park

Monmouth Park

Saratoga Race Course

Woodbine Racetrack

* Subject to change

AGOS Horses to Watch & Trip Notes – May 21

AGOS Free Horses to Watch & Trip Notes, compliments of Agameofskill.com.  Put these runners in your stable mail service.

 

Golden gate turf breakGOLDEN GATE FIELDS

LIVE IT WELL (Race 7 @Golden Gate, May 14, 2020) – strange ride from one of the top local jockeys, Frankie Alvarado.  She was blocked inside and never really given the chance to run her best. Alvarado gave her a 10lb bug boy ride.   Vronsky filly loves the grass and can win back in a similar spot.

FRENCH TUDOR (Race 8 @Golden Gate, May 14, 2020) – this debut runner was looking to make it three firsters in a row for  trainer Sherrie Monroe and DP Racing.  She made a strong, steady run after breaking from the far outside 10 post and just missed getting up for third in a sneaky good performance.   This was a pretty competitive field won by a Ron Ellis firster.

Art Parker’s look at what horse racing can do during the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

GULFSTREAM PARK

CHARMAINE’S MIA (Race 10 at GP, May 8, 2020) – The Factor filly ran a really strong 2nd to R Happy Ending, the logical winner of this race for Baxter.  Edgar Zayas, who rode her to her last win at 12-1, was aboard.  Fits at optional 2x, $50,000 claiming level sprinting.  Prefers 5f.

 

SANTA ANITA

OH MARVELOUS ME (Race 6 @Santa Anita, May 15, 2020) – Finished strong in first start for Mark Glatt barn to get up and defeat a competitive field of $25,000 claimers.  Emerald Downs stakes winner has some back class.

 

TAMPA BAY DOWNS

PREPARE FOR GLORY (Race 7 @Tampa, May 9, 2020).  This first time starter from a 0% debut barn drew the rail to boot, which is very tough on a debut runner in general.  The 3yo gelding closed sneaky well for third behind the top 2 betting choices that laid over this field.  Can move forward off this for sharp Jordan Blair outfit.

LIL B QUICK (Race 5 @Tampa, May 9, 2020) – 5yo mare figured to be tough in this $6,250 open claimer but she suffered a trip with multiple excuses.  Managed to get 4th in a sneaky good performance.  Watch back.

Handicapping Tip #52 – Prepare for the 2yos

Golden Gate Fields continues horse racing, closes to fans

Golden Gate Fields race track will continue its horse racing schedule without fans, the race track announced in a news release Thursday.

With the coronavirus outbreak, most other sporting events have been canceled.

“With the utmost regard for the safety and well-being of our customers and employees and in following the best available guidance from local and international health authorities, Santa Anita Park and Golden Gate Fields will temporarily close to the public effective immediately,” the release stated.

The races are open for off-track betting.

Other tracks still open for business include Gulfstream Park, Oaklawn Park and Tampa Bay Downs.

Golden Gate Fields Sees Increase in Handle in 1st Half of 2018

Track reported total handle was up 15.85% for meet that ended June 10, 2018

Source: Golden Gate Fields Sees Increase in Handle

Is Horse Racing Dead? Golden Gate Field Reports Gains

Golden Gate Fields concluded its 99-day winter/spring meet on Sunday, June 18 with gains in both attendance and on-track handle. The Bay Area track was able to achieve these gains despite experiencing one of the wettest seasons to affect Northern California in years, with over 40 inches of rain recorded during the first part of the season. This is the first winter/spring meet since 2011 where attendance was up by 5.65% with on-track handle also increasing by 3.44%. The most notable change in attendance came from the popular Dollar Day Sundays which saw a 13% increase year-over-year.

“We are very happy with our loyal fans for braving the weather and supporting our live racing product. I look forward to seeing them again during our summer meet,” said Joe Morris, senior vice president of West Coast operations for the Stronach Group.

The leading trainer of the meet was John Martin with 62 wins, leading him to back-to-back winning trainer titles (Martin was the leading trainer of the 2016 fall meet at Golden Gate Fields). Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer came in second. The leading jockey for the winter/spring meet was Abel Cedillo with 89 wins.

“It was a long meet. I’ve just been working hard and running a lot of horses. I tried really hard to win it this time. I need a little bit of a rest now,” said trainer John Martin. 

“I learned a lot down at Santa Anita from great jockeys like Mike Smith and Kent Desormeaux. I’m just blessed I’m here. I’m getting great horses now and my agent, Roger Olguin, couldn’t be better,” said jockey Abel Cedillo.

Golden Gate Fields is set to open its doors for another exciting summer meet on Thursday, August 24. The brief summer race season will run through Sunday, September 17, with special holiday racing on Labor Day Monday, September 4. First post every race day is scheduled for 1:45 p.m. The summer meet will feature a Turf Festival during the last two weeks: September 8 to September 17, a time in which Golden Gate Fields will be the only track in California offering turf racing. The track will offer vanning and stabling incentives for horsemen looking to ship from Southern California. The Turf Festival will be highlighted by the $50,000 Rolling Green Stakes, which will be contested on the lakeside turf course at a distance of a mile and one-sixteenth.