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Canterbury Park requests 52-day racing season starting in June

The racetrack and card casino has been shut down since mid-March.

Canterbury Park has submitted a request that it be allowed to open in June for a shortened racing season.

The Shakopee racetrack has made its request to the Minnesota Racing Commission, which would allow a 52-day live racing season between June 10 and Sept. 9.

Races would be held Monday through Thursday.

The racetrack has been closed down since Mar. 16 because of the coronavirus pandemic, with Canterbury Park also suspending its card casino and simulcast wagering, which are "major sources of horsemen purse revenue."

It furloughed 850 employees as a result.

Its request to the MRC – which would also have to be approved by the Minnesota Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association – includes procedures and protocols to be implemented during racing that take into account the COVID-19 crisis, which would be provided to state and local officials for review.

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The race days would be carried out with "no or limited spectators for all or part of the 52 days."

"This is another important step toward a racing season at Canterbury Park,” Vice President of Racing Operations Andrew Offerman said.

"Determining a planned start date provides a timeline for those planning to participate in the 2020 race meet. The importance of this additional step and the cooperation required of all parties involved should not be underestimated. As in every industry during these times, the ability to remain open to change and agile enough to react and make decisions as needed will be crucial to success."

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