2010 Racing Season to feature over $9.8 Million Dollars in Purses

VANCOUVER, March 8 /CNW/ - Hastings Racecourse is proud to release its 2010 Racing Schedule. The 2010 schedule has been carefully designed to please and thrill racing enthusiasts and fans of great live entertainment with the assistance of the British Columbia Lions organization and the Pacific National Exhibition "PNE" executive.

Over $9.8 Million Dollars in purses will be available during the 71-day 2010 Racing season that will begin Saturday, April 24th and conclude on Thanksgiving day, Monday, October 11th. Raj Mutti, Hastings General Manager said "Our stakes schedule will be worth $2.5 million in purses, highlighted again by the $200,000 BC Derby on Sunday, September 26. That day alone will represent $375,000 in purses with the Ascot Graduation ($75,000), Sir Winston Churchill ($50,000) and Derby Bar & Grill Express ($50,000) all featured on the same card." Mutti continued "We are very proud of these purses allocated this season given the ongoing challenges facing Racetracks across North America."

BC Cup Day, which takes place on the holiday Monday of August 2, will have seven stakes races on the card, featuring the $75,000 BC Cup Classic. The six other races, all of which have $50,000 purses, include the BC Cup Debutante, Nursery, Dogwood, Stellar's Jay, Distaff and Sprint. "In order to help the breeders better promote British Columbia bred horses, we have implemented several changes to race conditions," said Paul Ryneveld, Hastings' Director of Racing. "The most important of these changes will be the BC Cup Classic, Distaff and Sprint all reverting back to B.C.-bred horses only."

Hastings' management is delighted that a Grade III status has been retained for the Derby, Ballerina and Premiers. The $120,000 Ballerina on Saturday, October 9 is one of two stakes this season that will feature an added Breeders Cup bonus of $20,000. The other is the $100,000 BC Oaks on Saturday, September 25. The $100,000 Premiers is set for Sunday, October 10.

"Overall, for us to be in this position is a significant victory," Mutti said. "Many tracks have suffered severe purse cuts, some for as much as $1 million. We're fortunate not to be in that position."

Hastings Racecourse is also pleased to be partnering with the British Columbia Lions Football Team to cross promote our offerings with the Lions playing on the PNE grounds this coming season. Hastings also is pleased to continue its important relationship with the PNE in offering guests outstanding entertainment options.

The 2010 Hastings season includes 17 of the very popular "Friday night cards", beginning May 14 and continuing through the end of September. Hastings Racecourse and Slots will also be promoting and presenting a number of new and tried and true promotions and events that will appeal to seasoned racing veterans and novice players. Action and excitement of live thoroughbred horse racing, outstanding food and beverage options, live and unique entertainment and promotions will be featured both day and night this upcoming season.

The thrill and fun of the sport of kings will be running 71 times from April through to October 2010.

To view the 2010 Racing Calendar and Stakes Schedule please visit:

http://www.hastingsracecourse.com/racing/schedules/

For Racing Inquiries: Raj Mutti - (604) 216-5245

SOURCE Hastings Racecourse

For further information: For further information: For media inquiries please contact: Howard Blank, (604) 512-6066 or hblank@gcgaming.com

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