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Dec 19, 2008

Tropical Park Derby among stakes cut by Calder

By: By Don Agriss, Horse Racing Editor

Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Word came out this past weekend that Calder Race Course in Miami will not run the three remaining stakes on its Tropical Park meet. The track gives as the reason for the move the continuing overpayment of purses during the current meet.

"Unfortunately, we have to take this action to lessen the overpaying of purses," stated Kevin Flanery, senior vice president of Churchill Downs Incorporated, Calder's parent company,"and to help balance the purse account."

According to the press release from Calder, "A dispute with the Thoroughbred Horsemen's Group continues to prevent Tropical Meet races from being offered to advance deposit wagering platforms."

The most prominent of the three stakes eliminated is the $100,000 Tropical Park Derby for three-year-olds on the turf. Usually held on January 1, the meet's last day, the derby is the first graded stakes of the new year for just turned three-year-olds. In 2006 Barbaro used the race as his launching pad to that year's win in the Kentucky Derby.

Also dropped will be the $100,000 Stage Door Betty Handicap and $100,000 Frances Genter Stakes on Saturday, December 27.

The final four stakes were held on Saturday at Calder, $150,000 La Prevoyante Handicap, $150,000 W.L. McKnight Handicap, $100,000 Fred W. Hooper Handicap and $100,000 Kenny Noe, Jr. Handicap.

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