Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Loaded Stakes Schedule, Full Menu of Promotions Highlights Tioga Downs Season

When Tioga Downs opens for its seventh season of live racing this Saturday, fans will once again be treated to a full menu of fast horses and exciting promotions.

Special opening day post time is at 5:00 PM.

The first three races of the card will be contested then a break will be taken at 6:00 PM to allow fans to watch and wager on the 138th Kentucky Derby. Following the Run for the Roses, the remainder of the 10-race card will be run, starting at approximately 7:00 PM.

The season-long festival at Tioga Downs begins with a Cinco de Mayo themed party featuring a live mariachi band, margaritas and mint juleps plus the traditional race date t-shirt and magnet giveaway and a spectacular fireworks show following live racing.

Giveaways will be presented at least once a month with daily promotions designed to help introduce and engage fans with harness racing.

For the second year in a row, Tioga Downs presents the Million Dollar Ball Drop promotion. Fans can enter each racing day for a chance to win $1 Million on September 3 when 500 golf balls are dropped from a fire truck.

The always popular Horseplay Car Giveaway also returns. For a $1 donation to a local charity, fans can throw a mini rubber horse into a moving car. Each night, one successful fan will receive a $100 betting voucher and also be entered into the Grand Prize drawing to win the 2012 Toyota Yaris on Closing Night, Saturday, September 15.

New this season is Hot Dog Weekend featuring pig, ostrich and camel racing. The festivities take place June 16-17. July includes "Back to the Track" weekend featuring a free concert by former American Idol contestant Aaron Kelly. The now famous Corntastic Weekend, celebrating all things corn, returns in August.

On the track, Tioga Downs features a loaded stakes schedule worth more than $2.5 million, highlighted by the $400,000 Cane Pace, opening leg of the Pacing Triple Crown. Eliminations are scheduled for Sunday, August 26 with Finals on Labor Day, September 3.

North America's fastest standardbreds return on June 10 for the $200,000 Bettor's Delight. The previous two editions of the event have produced world record performances, including Bettor Sweet's 1:48.1 victory last year. The pacing mares share the spotlight on the same day when they contest the $200,000 Artiscape, won last year by Dan Patch Award winner, Anndrovette.

Tioga Downs will also host several legs of the lucrative New York Sire Stakes throughout the season beginning May 18.

The full 2012 stakes schedule is listed below:
June 10 - $200,000E Artiscape Aged Mare Pace (Post Time 1:30)
June 10 - $200,000E Bettor’s Delight Open Pace (Post Time 1:30)
June 17 - $300,000E Historic 3YO Trot & Pace (Post Time 1:30)
July 19-22 - $720,000 Tompkins-Geers Grand Circuit Stakes (Post Time 6:50)
July 22 - $720,000 Tompkins-Geers Grand Circuit Stakes (Post Time 1:30)
August 5 & 12 - $500,000E Empire Breeders Classic 3YO Pace (Post Time 1:30)
August 26 - $40,000E Miss Versatility Open Mare Trot (Post Time 6:50)
August 26 & September 3 - $400,000 Cane Pace 3YO Open Pace (Sept. 3 Post Time 1:30)
September 3 - $125,000E Shady Daisy 3YO Filly Pace (Post Time 1:30)