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2/28/2013 1:00:11 PM

Heightened Purse Structure, New Player Rewards Program Highlight Opening Day

SARATOGA SPRINGS, New York (February 28, 2013) – Looking to build on positive 2012 handle reports that featured a 13.4% increase in all source Saratoga Raceway wagers, Saratoga Casino & Raceway opens the 72nd harness racing season at 12:45 p.m. on Sunday, March 3. One of harness racing’s most historic venues will feature increased purses and a lucrative “cash card” player rewards program aimed at giving back to players, as well as horsepersons, throughout the 2013 racing season.

 “The Saratoga Harness Track is an historic brand with a strong following,” said John Matarazzo, Director of Racing Operations at Saratoga Casino & Raceway. “We’re proud to be returning after 72 years with increased purses and a premiere product, simulcasting to over 150 venues throughout the world.”

Opening day will once again kick off with a giveaway. A complimentary commemorative baseball cap will be provided to patrons who purchase a live racing program during the matinee card. Programs are available for $2. As always, parking and admission are free.

A major addition to this season is the availability of rewards for on-track customers. Players that sign up for “cash card” account wagering at Saratoga Raceway will be eligible to earn up to five percent cash back in wagers placed on the Saratoga Raceway product. “We worked hard leading up to opening day to ensure that incentives were in place to give back to our loyal on-property players” said Alex Savage, Racing Development Manager at Saratoga Casino & Raceway.

For 2013, the highlight of the season has been upgraded. The fifth annual Joe Gerrity, Jr. Memorial will consist of one dash for $275,000 on August 17. In the past, this race consisted of a series of legs drawn out over several weeks. The Gerrity Memorial will draw the best pacers in the Northeast. Saratoga Raceway will also schedule an earlier post-time for most race dates, beginning at 6:45p.m. For March, racing is offered at that post-time on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday nights as well as Thursday, March 28. Matinee racing will take place at 12:45 p.m. the first three Sundays of this month. As the summer hits, the racing program will expand to five days a week. The full season schedule is available online at

The lucrative New York Sire Stakes program returns on June 28 with nine racing programs scheduled throughout the summer. For 2012, the Sire Stakes series contributed over $2 million in purses, which can be expected for this season as well. Also returning is the annual Back to the Track event, a cooperative effort among the U.S. Trotting Association, its member racetracks and horsemen from coast to coast. The event will be held on July 6, encouraging families to celebrate the track.

The Pick-5 wager that was launched by the track late last season will continue for 2013, after showing popularity among bettors. Saratoga Casino and Raceway offers New York’s only Pick-5 wager. It is available on Wednesday evenings only, and has a guaranteed pool. Other wagering options that will continue are the 50-cent minimum wagering option on pick-fours and trifectas which launched in 2011, the 10-cent superfecta and the traditional wagering menu.

Saratoga Casino and Raceway, located on Crescent Avenue in Saratoga Springs, NY, features over 1,700 slots, electronic table games, Vapor Night Club, two full-service restaurants with buffets, a casual dining restaurant, three full-service bars, deli and a variety of guest services including valet parking and coat check. Operating hours for the gaming facility are 9 a.m. to 4 a.m. every day. Simulcast races can be viewed seven days a week and live harness racing runs March through mid-December. For a full racing schedule and additional information, please visit or call 800-727-2990. Must be 18 years of age or older to play video gaming machines or wager on horses and at least 21 to enter Vapor.  Please play responsibly. 

For more information on the 2013 racing season, contact:
Don Hoover
Race Secretary
(518) 376-0242

For more information on promotions and events, contact:
Alex Savage
Racing Development and Simulcast Manager
(518) 581-5743

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Wagering on horse racing and playing Video Gaming Machines is entertaining and fun when done in a responsible manner. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, please call for 24-hour assistance at: 1-877-8 HOPE NY. Or visit the NY Council on Problem Gambling. Click here to view Saratoga Casino and Raceway’s Responsible Gaming policy.
logoMust be 18 years of age or older to play video gaming machines or wager on horses; 21 to enter Vapor. Please play responsibly.