Barrel racing may be part of Del Mar and Saratoga events

Aug 27, 2012 9:04 PM

Barrel racing is common at country rodeos but it isn’t the kind of activity you would expect to see at Del Mar or Saratoga. However, has been offered in a pari-mutuel setting in the Florida Panhandle.

Whether it will be allowed to continue depends on a ruling by Administrative Judge Cathy Sellers, who promised to have her decision ready by Nov. 24.

Gretna Racing LLC was granted a Quarter Horse racing permit for its track, located about 25 miles west of the state capital, Tallahassee. Instead of racing quarter horses, the operators substituted barrel racing.

The people involved in quarter horse racing objected and took the matter to court. Opponents contend the operators only wanted to open a facility that would qualify for slot machines and poker and had no intention of operating a horse track.