Santa Anita and the Thoroughbred Owners of California reached an agreement Saturday that will allow the track to reopen racing March 29. Santa Anita has been closed since March 5 after a dramatic rise in horse deaths, which is at 22 since Dec. 26.
While speculation was that racing could resume as soon as Friday, there was always the issue of getting the deal approved by the California Horse Racing Board. There was a CHRB meeting originally scheduled Thursday, but these medication changes were not listed on the docket and did not meet a 10-day public notification period.
Chuck Winner, CHRB chairman, late Saturday decided to move the meeting a week so as to meet all the legal rules regarding public notice.
Initially, all race-day Lasix was to be prohibited, under a proposal by the Stronach Group, which owns and runs Santa Anita. But the compromise position is that it will be applied only to 2018 foals, or horses that won’t race until next year. Horses currently on Lasix will be allowed to continue to receive the medication on race day but in a maximum dosage of 5cc, instead of the 10cc currently allowed.
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