Saratoga Race Course

The New York Racing Association has reached a settlement with the owners of a food truck that was booted from an upstate track.

The Times Union of Albany reports ( ) that NYRA agreed last week to pay the owners of the Wandering Dago nearly $70,000 to settle the lawsuit they filed in August 2013 against the racing organization and the state Office of General Services.


In Major League Baseball, in the National League, the Philadelphia Phillies have tossed the first combined no-hitter in team history on Monday as Cole Hamels and three relievers led the Phils to a 7-0 victory in Atlanta. Jake Diekman, Ken Giles and closer Jonathan Papelbon each pitched a perfect inning of relief to finish off the fourth no-hitter in the majors this season. It was 12th no-hitter in Phillies history, and the first since Roy Halladay threw a perfect game against the Marlins during the 2010 season and a no-hitter against the Reds in the 2010 playoffs.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Tom Durkin, longtime announcer at Saratoga Race Course, will call his last race Sunday. Today, in the Winners’ Circle beside the flat track, Durkin opened up about his imminent retirement.

On Friday morning, sitting beside New York Racing Association President and CEO Chris Kay, Tom Durkin was brief in his opening remarks. Sunday will mark an end to his more than four-decade career of calling horse races, from the sport’s lower-level tracks to the heights of the Classic races.

Saratoga Springs is preparing for its biggest tourist weekend of the summer season, capped by horse racing’s Mid-Summer Derby.

Tens of thousands of visitors will pack Saratoga Springs and Saratoga Race Course to celebrate Travers weekend. The Travers Stakes, which will be run on Saturday, was first held in 1864, and is one of the oldest and best-attended thoroughbred races in the country.

New York Racing Association CEO Chis Kay said New York has enjoyed a great summer for racing, leading up into this weekend’s event, a key stakes race for 3-year-olds.

NCAA – Football:

Defending national-champion Florida State is No. 1 in The Associated Press preseason college football poll for the sixth time after receiving 57 of 60 first-place votes from the media panel. Second-ranked Alabama, third-ranked Oregon and No. 4 Oklahoma all received one first-place vote. Ohio State is fifth, followed by Auburn, UCLA, Michigan St., South Carolina and Baylor.

AJ Allmendinger beat Marcos Ambrose on a two-lap dash to the finish to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen International on a somber Sunday. Three-time Cup champion Tony Stewart pulled out of the race 12 hours after he struck and killed a sprint car driver who had climbed from his car during a race in Canandaigua, New York. Kevin Ward Jr.'s family says it "appreciates all the prayer and support" but that members "would like time to grieve."

Horse Racing:

New York thoroughbred racing is heading to Saratoga for the 146th summer season.

The 40-day meet opens Friday at Saratoga Race Course. The 10-race card is highlighted by the Grade 3 Schuylerville for 2-year-old fillies and the $100,000 Sir Cat for 3-year-old turf horses.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Officials gathered in Saratoga Springs today to unveil some new features visitors will likely spot around the Spa City, as they celrbate the 146th meet at Saratoga Race Course.

Golf – The British Open:

The 143rd British Open is underway at Royal Liverpool in Hoylake, England.

This is the third major of the year. Bubba Watson won the Masters back in April before Martin Kaymer won the U.S. Open last month. Each will be after his second major title of the year.

Tiger Woods and defending champ Phil Mickelson are among the other big names looking to contend this year.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

New York Racing Association officials have detailed the upcoming summer meet at Saratoga Race Course.

9/3/13 - Panel

Sep 3, 2013

  Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, Times Union Associate Editor, Mike Spain, and University at Albany Journalism Professor and Investigative Reporter, Rosemary Armao. Joe Donahue moderates.

Topics include:
Time Warner and CBS
Diana Nyad
End of Track Season at the Saratoga Race Course

Tigers Shut Out Red Sox 3-0.

Sep 3, 2013

In baseball, Detroit beat Boston 3-0 yesterday. Doug Fister rebounded from a miserable start with seven shutout innings for the Tigers.

Elsewhere in the American League, Alex Rodriguez reached base twice while the Yankees put together an eight-run fourth to beat the White Sox 9-1. Minnesota passed Houston 10-6. Kansas City beat Seattle 3-1. Baltimore topped Cleveland 7-2. Oakland doubled up Texas 4-2 and the Angels won against Tampa Bay 11-2.

Baltimore Snaps Boston's Four Game Winning Streak

Aug 30, 2013
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In baseball, Baltimore beat the Red Sox 3-2, snapping Boston’s four game winning streak.

Elsewhere in the American League, it was Detroit over Oakland 7-6. Kansas City beat Minnesota 3-1. The Angels blanked Tampa Bay 2-0 and Seattle topped Houston 3-2.

Checking the National League, the Mets cruised past Philadelphia 11-3. Washington shut out Miami 9-0 and Milwaukee blanked Pittsburgh 4-0.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

More than 47,000 people jammed into Saratoga Race Course on Saturday for the 144th running of the Travers Stakes, the largest crowd for the mid-summer derby since 2004. WAMC's Saratoga Springs Bureau Chief Lucas Willard brings us this piece about what a day at the races sounds like.

Rodriguez's Lawyer Calls Letter A "Publicity Stunt"

Aug 20, 2013
Alex Rodriguez
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In baseball news, a lawyer for Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez has declined Major League Baseball's challenge to make public evidence that led to the 211-game suspension.

The MLB executive vice president wrote to lawyer Joseph Tacopina Monday, urging him to waive his client's confidentiality. The letter was revealed on NBC's “Today Show.”

Rodriguez Hits Revenge Homer Against Dempster

Aug 19, 2013
Keith Allison/Flickr

In baseball, Ryan Dempster plunked Alex Rodriguez with a pitch in the second inning of Boston's 9-6 loss to the New York Yankees, leading to the ejection of manager Joe Girardi. Dempster's first pitch of the at-bat went behind A-Rod's knees, and the next two were inside before the fourth hit Rodriguez. The benches and bullpens emptied following the plunking, but order was quickly restored without further incident.

Then Rodriguez got the better of Dempster four innings later, hitting his 649th career home run. It sparked a four-run rally that turned a 6-3 deficit into a 7-6 lead.

Major League Baseball Is Pausing For Rules Change

Aug 16, 2013
Bill Selak/flickr

Major League Baseball is expanding its video review process next season. Managers will be allowed one challenge over the first six innings of games and two after the seventh inning until the end of the game. Calls that are challenged will be reviewed by a crew in MLB headquarters in New York City, which will make the final ruling. The proposal is to be voted on by the owners in November.

Brady Sprains Knee, Giving New England A Scare

Aug 15, 2013
Keith Allison/Flickr

In the NFL, the New England Patriots got a scare Wednesday when quarterback Tom Brady limped off the practice field. Brady sprained his left knee after he was hit after throwing a pass. His return is day to day.

In baseball news, the New York Yankees pounded the L.A. Angels 11-3. Alfonso Soriano homered twice for the second straight night and drove in a career-high seven runs. That gives him a staggering 13 RBIs in two games.

With Rivera Off, Yanks Glimpse Into Future

Aug 13, 2013
Keith Allison/Flickr

In baseball, Hiroki Kuroda worked eight shutout innings and Curtis Granderson hit a solo homer in the Yankees' 2-1 win over Los Angeles. Mariano Rivera had the night off after blowing three straight save chances, including one Sunday.

Dufner Wins First Major Title

Aug 12, 2013
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In golf news, Jason Dufner won his first major title with a two-stroke victory over Jim Furyk at the PGA Championship. Dufner bogeyed the final two holes Sunday for a 2-under 68 that was good enough to hold off the 2003 U.S. Open champion. The winning score was 10-under 270.

In baseball, Mariano Rivera blew a 4-2 lead before Brett Gardner homered with two outs in the bottom of the ninth to lift the Yankees over Detroit 5-4. Alex Rodriguez also turned boos into cheers after hitting his first homer of the season in the second inning.

Recent reports show that the 2013 racing season at the Saratoga Race Course was facing lower levels of attendance over last year in the several days after its July 19th opening.

The Albany Times Union reported that on an opening day with temperatures above 90 degrees, track attendance was down 15 percent from the previous year’s opening day. The slump continued with the next day down 13 percent. On the first giveaway day, attendance was 7 percent below last year’s.

Furyk And Scott Take First Round Lead At Oak Hill

Aug 9, 2013
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In golf, Veteran Jim Furyk and Masters champion Adam Scott share the first-round lead at the 95th PGA Championship, the final major on the men's golf calendar. Both shot an opening round 5-under-65.

Tiger Woods shot an opening round 1-over-par-71 with a round that featured a bogey, double bogey and two birdies. British Open champion Phil Mickelson stumbled with a double-bogey on No. 18 and also shot 1-over 71.

    The Saratoga Race Course is 150 years old and the track is being celebrated throughout the city this season and tonight, the party comes here to SPAC.

Keith Lockhart will conduct the Philadelphia Orchestra in a series of “horse” related pieces. "Serenade" by Richard Danielpour is receiving its world premiere performance tonight here at SPAC. The work pays tribute to other aspects of Saratoga, in addition to racing. Over the course of three movements, it visits the arts scene, the mineral waters, and, finally, the track.

SPAC's commission of Danielpour's "Serenade" was underwritten by Charles and Candace Wait and happens to coincide with Danielpour's 30th anniversary of visiting Saratoga. Charles Wait is the Chairman of Saratoga 150.

Rodriguez Formally Appeals Suspension

Aug 8, 2013
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The Major League Baseball Players Association formally appealed Alex Rodriguez's 211-game suspension. He was suspended through the 2014 season Monday when the league penalized 13 players following an investigation into Biogenesis of America, a Florida anti-aging clinic accused of distributing performance-enhancing drugs.

Rodriguez Plays On Despite Suspension

Aug 6, 2013
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It was a strange day in baseball Monday…

That was the sound of Chicago White Sox fans booing Alex Rodriguez’s return to the big leagues hours after he was suspended through 2014 by Major League Baseball in the Biogenesis case, a punishment he plans to appeal. Rodriguez and 12 other players have been given lengthy suspensions after an in-depth probe. All but Rodriguez have accepted their suspensions.

"I am fighting for my life," he said. "If I don't defend myself, no one else will."

Talks With MLB And A-Rod Are Stalled

Aug 2, 2013
Alex Rodriguez
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In baseball news, while Monday appears to be the deadline for Alex Rodriguez and 13 others to accept suspensions for their ties to the Biogenesis of America anti-aging clinic, ESPN reports that negotiations between A-Rod and Major League Baseball have stalled over Rodriguez's desire to make sure he can cash in on some of the $100 million owed under his contract.

On the scoreboard, the Red Sox came back to beat the Mariners 8-7 last night and sweep Seattle in the three-game series. Daniel Nava's long single to center field capped a six-run rally in the bottom of the ninth inning.

Is A-Rod Giving Up The Fight?

Aug 1, 2013
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Baseball's non-waiver trade deadline has passed, but the clock is ticking for possible steroid suspensions.

ESPN reports that after Alex Rodriguez’s lawyer said his client would fight any discipline from Major League Baseball for alleged steroid use, A-Rod's representatives are now negotiating a possible settlement that could result in a lengthy suspension. The Yankees expect Rodriguez to be accused of recruiting other athletes for the clinic, attempting to obstruct MLB's investigation, and not being truthful with MLB in the past.

Derek Jeter Returns In Style, Homers His First Pitch

Jul 29, 2013
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In baseball news, Derek Jeter homered on the first pitch he saw to give the Yankees a jolt in his return from the disabled list and Alfonso Soriano made the captain a winner with a game-ending single that lifted New York over  Tampa Bay 6-5 Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep.

The Red Sox are back atop the American League East after winning the rubber match of their three-game series in Baltimore. Jon Lester picked up his 10th win by allowing four hits over seven innings of their 5-0 shutout of the Orioles. 

Yankees To Discipline A-Rod For 2nd Medical Opinion

Jul 26, 2013
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In baseball news, already a target of Major League Baseball's drug investigation, third baseman Alex Rodriguez angered the Yankees when he obtained a second medical opinion on his strained left quadriceps this week. The Yankees intend to discipline him, most likely with a fine.

Checking the scoreboard, the Yankees split their four game series with the Rangers after a 2-0 victory. Meanwhile, the Chicago Cubs have pulled Alfonso Soriano from the lineup and a trade to send the outfielder to the Yankees is about almost complete.