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Canterbury Hosts Record Northlands Trials

Rich Northlands Futurity attracts a record number of horses to the trials.

Press Release
June 12, 2013

Canterbury Park’s 13-race program on Saturday includes six trial races featuring 55 2-year-olds competing for a chance to run in the richest Quarter Horse race ever held at the Shakopee racetrack: the $133,525 Mystic Lake Northlands Futurity. This will be the first time Canterbury has needed to conduct six trial races to allow all nominated horses a chance to qualify.

The 10 fastest horses from Saturday’s six time trials will advance to race in the 26th running of the Northlands Friday, July 5. Prior to this running, the largest Northlands purse was $112,753 paid in 1991.

In June of last year, Canterbury Park and the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, which owns and operates Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, entered into a cooperative purse enhancement and marketing agreement that will inject $75 million into the horsemen purse fund over the agreement’s 10-year span. The purse for the race now named the Mystic Lake Northlands Futurity was guaranteed at $100,000 in February which included money from the Mystic Lake Purse Enhancement Fund. When nominating and sustaining payments made by horsemen interested in running more than covered the $100,000 guarantee, management combined those payments with the enhancement fund dollar creating a record Quarter Horse purse at Canterbury.

“The Northlands Futurity has for years been our marquee Quarter Horse race,” track president Randy Sampson said. “But with the addition of money from the Mystic Lake Purse Enhancement Fund, the interest has been magnified.”

Canterbury’s 11-time Quarter Horse training champion Edward Ross Hardy has four entered in the trials, which will be run as races eight through 13. Hardy has won the Northlands six times, including three consecutive wins from 2008-2010.

Racing begins Saturday at 1:30 pm.