Challenge, Vegas prize for Penn National stakes
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Penn National Gaming Inc., the largest operator of Standardbred racetracks in North America, has announced the inaugural Penn National Gaming Harness Racing Challenge, to be conducted throughout the 2018 racing season.
The series includes six separate stakes events with purses totaling an estimated $800,000. The races will be conducted at three Penn National Gaming owned, or jointly owned racetracks – Freehold Raceway (Dexter Cup Final and Lady Suffolk - May 5), Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway (Dayton Trotting Derby and Dayton Pacing Derby - Sept. 28) and Plainridge Park Casino (Spirit of Massachusetts and Clara Barton Distaff - July 26.)
The top owner, driver and trainer based on points accumulated in the series will receive two (2) round trip airline tickets to Las Vegas and a three (3) night stay at either the Tropicana Las Vegas or M Resort in Henderson, NV, both Penn National Gaming owned properties.
"We have had a similar successful series in place the past few years for our Thoroughbred racetracks and thought with our strong presence in the harness racing industry, and having key stake events throughout the season, this would be a nice incentive for those competing in our major races," said Mark Loewe, Vice President of Ohio Racing Operations for Penn National Gaming.
The series will feature two events at each track, both conducted on the same day. A new stakes race on the calendar this year will be the Clara Barton Distaff for aged pacing mares to be conducted at Plainridge Park Casino. "The Clara Barton fills a needed void for this division in this time frame and is a great compliment to our Spirit of Massachusetts (aged trot) which debuted last year as the richest harness race ever in the Commonwealth," said Steve O'Toole, Director of Racing for Plainridge Park Casino.
Complete rules and the point system for the Penn National Harness Racing Challenge will be posted shortly on the websites of the participating racetracks. (Penn National)