by Dustin Ross, Regional Racing Operations Manager, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs
Nichols, NY — The 2008 racing season is nearly here for Tioga and Vernon Downs and each track is preparing for a vigorous stake season.
First up in 2008, with a $1,500 payment due March 15, are the Tioga and Vernon Downs early closers. There are four events for older horses and mares.
The Conway Hall (open mare trot) returns with an estimated $125,000 purse and the Artiscape makes its third appearance (open mare pace) with an estimated purse of $120,000. The Credit Winner (open trot) also returns with an estimated purse of $140,000.
The Miss Versatility (open mare trot) will make its third appearance with a little change this year. The Meadowlands has graciously accepted to hold a leg which will increase the total number of legs to three. The Big M will hold the first leg followed by a second and third leg at Tioga and Vernon Downs. An estimated $120,000 final will be contested on Jug Day at the Delaware County Fairgrounds in Ohio. The “versatile” mares will race on four different sized tracks (mile, five-eighths, seven-eighths, and half-mile).