Corporate Name: The New York Racing Association, Inc.
Street Address: 267 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs, New York 12866 (click for map)
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 90, Jamaica, New York 11417
Telephone: Year-Round: (718) 641-4700; In Season: (518) 584-6200
Saratoga Race Course again will conduct a 40-day meet in 2016, from July 22–September 5, a successful expansion of racing’s most prestigious meet first implemented in 2010.
Saratoga, along with Belmont Park and Aqueduct Racetrack, is operated by the New York Racing Association, Inc., a private not-for-profit racing association established in 1955.
The 147th running of the Grade I Travers Stakes for 3-year-olds on August 27 serves as the meet’s centerpiece. Mainstays of the Saratoga stakes schedule include the Grade I Whitney, Grade II Fourstardave Handicap, Grade I Sword Dancer Invitational, Grade I Alabama, Grade I Woodward, Grade I Spinaway, and Grade I Hopeful. The 2016 Fasig-Tiption Saratoga Sale will be held on August 8 and 9.
Saratoga has come a long way since its first Thoroughbred meet, staged by gambler, casino owner, ex-boxing champion, and future Congressman John “Old Smoke” Morrissey, on August 3–6, 1863.
Also in 1863, Morrissey enlisted his friends, John R. Hunter, William Travers, and Leonard Jerome to form the Saratoga Association. Travers was named president of the new organization. The Association was responsible for building a new course the following year on the present site of Saratoga Race Course, while the old course became a training facility known as “Horse Haven.”
Saratoga’s populace embraced racing from the beginning and when the trains would arrive at the old station on West Circular Street, passengers would greet the horses and escort them around Congress Park to the barns on Union Avenue and off Nelson Avenue. Racing and Saratoga have walked together ever since.
In 1957, New York State Governor W. Averell Harriman, who owned Log Cabin Stud, put into effect “The Harriman Law,” which mandated Saratoga Race Course race a minimum of 24 days every year. The phenomenon was born.
Today, Saratoga’s population of about 26,000 is said to triple every summer when the thoroughbreds return. People come for the races and discover a wonderful part of New York in the process.
Saratoga Springs, which boasts the motto “Health, History, and Horses,” is home to the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, the Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC), the National Museum of Dance, Skidmore College, and the healthful mineral springs that have attracted visitors since the region was given its present name by colonists trying to pronounce the Iroquois word for the region, “Sarachtogoe.”
Officers: Christopher K. Kay, CEO & President; Joseph Lambert, Senior Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer & General Counsel; Lynn LaRocca, Senior Vice President & Chief Experience Officer; David O’Rourke, Vice President, Chief Revenue Officer; Robert Sica, Vice President, Chief Security Officer; Martin Panza, Senior Vice President of Racing Operations; Glen Kozak, Vice President of Facilities & Racing Surfaces; Robert J. Hughes, Chief Information Officer; Stephen Travers, Senior Director, Hospitality, Guest Services & Group Sales; Iris Roberts, Records Access Officer; Jelena Alonso, Controller; Ross Didia, Corporate Treasurer; Min Kim, Director, Internal Audit
Racing Secretary: Dan Eidson
Director, Horsemen’s Relations: Carmen Barrera
Senior Director of TV: Dan Silver
Official Track Photographer: Adam Coglianese
Nearest City: Saratoga Springs, approximately 20–30 miles from Albany, Schenectady and Troy; Saratoga Springs population: 26,000
Nearest Airport: Albany, 30 miles from track (private planes also use Ballston Spa and Glens Falls airports)
Track Data: 11/8-mile oval, sandy loam; 7-furlong chute; length of stretch, 1,144 feet; 1-mile turf course; 7-furlong inner turf course (and steeplechase course with six jumps); training track (Oklahoma), 1 mile; Clare Court galloping track, ½ mile; stable accommodations for 1,830 horses, 1,025 personnel; total acreage: 350
Seating Accommodations: 6,600 grandstand and clubhouse seats
Dress Requirements: Grandstand: shoes and shirts required at all times; Clubhouse, At The Rail Pavillion, The Porch, Club Terrace, Carousel Restaurant, and Luxury Suites: proper attire required at management’s discretion; no short-shorts, cut-offs, tank tops or abbreviated wear permitted; box seats and Turf Terrace, gentlemen: suits or sports jackets requested (required in box seat area); ladies: dresses, skirts, or slack outfits; absolutely no shorts, jeans, or abbreviated wear; paddock saddling area and Winner’s Circle: no shorts or abbreviated wear permitted; gentlemen: collared shirts required
Minimum Age Admitted: Children of any age admitted, but only if under the supervision of a parent or guardian at all times; children under 12, free
Price of Admission: Grandstand, $5; clubhouse, $8
Parking: General parking, free; trackside, $12; preferred, $7