California horse racing politics are as contentious as its races these days.
The California Horse Racing Board meets Thursday in the Grandstand Clubhouse at the Cal Expo racing facility to hammer out details of future racing. Hollywood Park made it official on May 8 that its last day of live racing will be Dec. 22 to allow the 238-acre landmark to be razed for development, Del Mar and Santa Anita have lined up to take over Hollywood’s racing dates, and therein lies the challenge.
Despite Del Mar and Santa Anita picking up dates, there will be a hole in the schedule in December, with no racing planned at either track until Dec. 26 when Santa Anita reopens. “No matter how you look at it, 2014 is going to be a test,” Joe Harper said. “We might find that we need a bigger break or need to schedule some things differently in 2015. We’re trying to do the best with what we think will happen and see how it works.”
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