OCEANPORT, N.J. – Monmouth Park Racetrack, a storied name in American
Thoroughbred racing, will open for the 2012 season on Saturday, May 12, under
the auspices of Darby Development LLC, the management company representing the
New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association.
Dennis Drazin, an advisor to the horsemen in negotiating the lease of
the track from the New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority, will continue in
that role. Bob Kulina, a long-time Monmouth
Park executive, will
serve as president of the management company.
John Forbes, president of the NJTHA, said the horsemen were eager to
get the new meeting underway.
“Everyone is looking forward to this meeting and all it means to the New Jersey horse racing
industry,” Forbes said. “We’ll take what we know worked in the past and couple
that with some new ideas.
“Our 2012 meeting is the first step in ensuring Monmouth Park’s
prominence within the racing industry as we strive to enhance our simulcast
appeal, develop a more fan-friendly atmosphere at the track and provide our
fans with world-class Thoroughbred racing.”
Drazin said Darby Development is looking forward to the challenges presented
by the 2012 meeting.
“It’s exciting that the horsemen will now control their own destiny,”
Drazin said. “We look forward to working with the NJTHA to build a long-term,
sustainable racing industry in the Garden
The NJTHA won a five-year lease of the facility from the NJSEA, with
options for three, 10-year extensions of the lease.
Under the terms of the lease, Darby Development will also operate the
off-track wagering facility in Woodbridge,
N.J. Plans call for the creation
of several more OTW sites in the state, and Drazin said that they are expected
to be up and running by January of 2014.
The NJTHA also has exclusive rights to open up to a dozen Easy Bets
outlets in bars and restaurants throughout northern New Jersey.
Drazin said that Darby Development will retain a site planning manager
to determine the best use of the Monmouth
Park property in
“While Thoroughbred racing will always be our core business,” Drazin
said, “we need to explore alternative revenue sources that enhance the
operation and prove popular with locals and shore visitors.”
Monmouth’s 2012 racing schedule includes a 65-day meet at Monmouth Park, plus 10 days of turf racing at the
Monmouth Park’s meeting opens on Saturday, May 12, and
runs through Oct. 7. The track will race on Saturdays and Sundays for the first
three weeks. Fridays will be added to the schedule in June, and three holiday
cards will be run on Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day. Monmouth will
also run four Thursday twilight cards in August, with a first post time of 4
The first two turf days at the Big M were held on May 4-5. The final
eight will be run on Fridays and Saturdays from Oct. 12 through Nov 3.