Statement from Meadowlands, Tioga and Vernon Downs:
East Rutherford, NJ - Given the current situation The Meadowlands and Tioga and Vernon Downs are doing whatever can be done to look after our employees and be a good neighbor in the community.
We also realize the plight of the horsemen that race at our tracks and the anxiety of not knowing what the near future might hold.
It is in this spirit that we try to shed a little light on what may be possible.
It is our hope that we may be able to resume live racing at The Meadowlands on May 1, 2020. That is of course contingent on many things, most of which we do not control.
Tioga and Vernon Downs will set to preparing for live racing as soon as the casinos are cleared to open.
Fortunately, our stakes at The Meadowlands would have barely begun on the original calendar. The only casualty thus far is the new 4-year-old NJSS Maturity stakes that were scheduled for March and April. We'll look to race those later in the season.
The first open stake scheduled is Leg #1 of the Graduate Series for pacers on May 2. If we get open, we would likely delay that race for a bit to give those horses a chance to get a start while looking for a logical spot to race it. The NJSS for 3-year-olds were to begin on May 15 and we might move them back a few weeks.
These ideas are contingent upon whether stakes at other tracks are raced when originally scheduled.
We are cautiously optimistic that as a result of the delay to the opening of their live meet that Monmouth Park will race a turf only meet at The Meadowlands in 2020 and not convert the main track. This potential development may give us some flexibility so far as making up live race dates in October and November.
"We are working to get the tracks open, but only when it's safe," said Meadowlands President Jeff Gural. "I get that guys need to race, I'd like to race too. We must adhere to the guidelines set forth by Governors Murphy and Cuomo and we will follow their direction."