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STATE FAIR CONSOLIDATES HARNESS RACING MEET
New Meet Schedule is Wednesday though Saturday; Sundays Dark
Wednesday, August 24, 2005 - from the California State Fair Media Center

SACRAMENTO, CA -- In an effort to improve the quality of the harness racing program, Cal Expo officials have decided, with the approval of the California Horse Racing Board and the California Harness Horsemen’s Association, to consolidate the State Fair harness racing program into four nights instead of five. The new schedule will operate live nighttime harness racing from Wednesday through Saturday for the duration of the Fair. There will be no Sunday night racing programs on August 28 or September 4, 2005, as previously scheduled.

“We want to offer the highest quality race meeting possible,” said Norb Bartosik, General Manager and CEO of the California State Fair. “The horsemen have really stepped up and supported us in many ways and with this schedule shift we hope to alleviate some of the pressure of having to race their stock so many nights of the week.”

A focus on the health and wellbeing of the racehorses prompted the State Fair to reevaluate its meeting schedule. “We feel we can provide a higher quality race meet and support the overall health of the industry and horses by focusing our attention on four days instead of five.” Bartosik said.

The revised racing schedule for the remainder of the fair is Wednesday, August 24 through Saturday, August 27; Wednesday, August 31 through Saturday, September 3; and a special Labor Day daytime program on September 5. Cal Expo will continue operating the harness racing meet after the Fair for 6 racing programs on September 9 and 10, and September 14 through 17. The Sacramento Harness Association will take over the operation of the harness racing meeting at Cal Expo beginning September 23, 2005.

For more information about the State Fair harness program, please contact the California State Fair Media Center at 916-263-3108 or media@calexpo.com