Saratoga to open for its 148th season of thoroughbred racing


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (AP) — The 148th season of thoroughbred racing in Saratoga Springs gets underway this week, kicking off nearly seven weeks of a summertime tradition dating to the Civil War.

Opening day for Saratoga Race Course is Friday, with gates opening at 11 a.m. and the first race post time scheduled for 1 p.m. Racing will be held on 40 days through Labor Day, Sept. 5, with the track closed on Tuesdays.

The New York Racing Association runs Saratoga along with the Belmont and Aqueduct tracks. It says fans will see a number of upgrades at the track, which first opened in 1864.

The improvements include the planting of more than 850 trees on the track grounds and adding 100 picnic tables, bringing the number available on a first-come, first-served basis to 950.