Commissioner Van Clief Proposes Compromise at Monday’s Commission Meeting

The room at yesterday’s Racing Commission meeting was full of Virginia trainers, owners, and breeders who were able to effectively express their need for more weeks of racing to the Commissioners in attendance. One by one, horsemen explained why Colonial Down’s current six-day race proposal would not work for them or grow Virginia’s thoroughbred industry.

Commissioner D. G. Van Clief  proposed that Colonial and the horsemen regard 2014 as a transitional year and run a seven-week, 21-day meet (Friday, Saturday and Sunday). Going forward they would look to the Commission’s Blue Ribbon Committee to create a three-to-five year plan for Virginia Racing. While it was not the eight weeks of racing Virginia horsemen had been hoping for, Frank Petramalo of the VA HBPA thought it was “good compromise” and expressed support for Van Clief’s proposal. Colonial Downs was non-committal on Van Clief’s proposal.

The next Commission meeting is scheduled for March 27th at Colonial Downs.