Canterbury Park Set for May 5 Opening

The track's 67-day meet runs through September 16.

Edited press release

Canterbury Park opens its 67-day Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse meet on May 5.

Canterbury Park will begin its 67-day meet on May 5, two weeks earlier than it has for the past eight years.

Post time for the first race will be 4 p.m. (CDT). Canterbury will also offer live racing on Kentucky Derby Day, May 6. Post time for the first live race on May 6 will be 1:45 p.m., with the Kentucky Derby scheduled to be run at 5:45 local time.

“Combining live racing with the spectacle that is the Kentucky Derby is the ideal situation,” said Canterbury Park president Randy Sampson. “Derby Day is often the one day that the casual sports fan and excitement seeker comes to the racetrack, many for the first time. Introducing them to live racing will only enhance their experience and encourage another visit; and existing fans love the added action a live racing program offers."

From 2005-08, Canterbury's meet opener was held on Kentucky Derby weekend and produced some of the the track's largest crowds, including 18,230 in 2008 and 17,111 in '06. Sampson is expecting a similar crowd in 2017.

For its 2017 meet, which features both Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing, Canterbury Park will offer live racing primarily on a Thursday-through-Sunday schedule. Weeknight racing, excluding opening night, will begin at 6:30, while racing on weekends and holidays will primarily start at 12:45. On May 6 and 20, both Saturdays, live racing will start at 1:45 to accommodate Triple Crown races. The track's July 3 program will begin at 4 p.m. and be followed by a live fireworks show. On Saturday, August 26, live racing will begin at 6 p.m.

Canterbury Park's 2017 promotional calendar includes popular favorites such as Extreme Race Day on July 15, where ostriches, zebras, camels take to the track, and the July 29 Corgi Races and Cupcake Festival. New events have also been added, including the expansion of the annual beerfest to a Beer, Burgers, and Bacon Festival which will be held in the track infield during live racing on August 5, and a Street Art Festival, featuring the work of local and regional artists, on August 12-13.

“We continue to grow our successful promotions each season and also try new events that complement racing to give our guests great entertainment value and provide them with reasons to visit multiple times each year,” Sampson said. “There are events on the calendar that are great for family outings as well as some that are geared towards adults.”

Canterbury Park's Quarter Horse stakes schedule is topped by the 350-yard, $160,000-est. Mystic Lake Northlands Futurity on July 2. Other prominent Quarter Horse stakes include the 440-yard, $60,000-added Bank of America Canterbury Challenge Championship on July 4, and the 400-yard, $60,000-est. Canterbury Park Derby on July 16.

Click here for a complete Quarter Horse stakes schedule. Click here for a full racing calendar.

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