equestrian news

Northern California horse race fair circuit begins


The Northern California summer fair circuit, which opens Thursday in Pleasanton, used to be the poor stepchild to the region's major racing venues - Golden Gate Fields or Bay Meadows before it closed. Not so much anymore.During the circuit's first eight weeks - at the Alameda County, State and Sonoma County fairs - 15 stakes races are scheduled. Golden Gate Fields ran only 11 in its 25-week season that ended Sunday. Purses have been raised as much as $3,000 on the lower end of the class spectrum, so that a majority of them are higher than comparable races at Golden Gate. Still lagging are purses for the higher-class non-stakes races."We're working on our program on three levels," fair circuit racing secretary Tom Doutrich said.

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