New York Race Tracks
New York State has a long and interesting horse racing history, going back to the mid 1800s. The non-profit management group, the New York Racing Association> oversees the operation of New York State's three largest thoroughbred horse racing tracks – Aqueduct, Belmont Park and Saratoga. Aqueduct race track is the only facility of its kind located within New York City's limits and has been in operation since 1894. Located in Saratoga Springs, the Saratoga race track was opened in 1863 and has played host to the oldest major thoroughbred horse race in the country since 1864 – the Travers Stakes. Belmont Park is located just outside the New York City limits on Long Island and has been in operation since 1905. Other race tracks in New York State are Vernon Downs, Saratoga Equine Sports Center, Monticello Raceway, Finger Lakes Race Track, Buffalo Raceway, and Yonkers Raceway.
The New York State Racing and Wagering Board has jurisdiction over horse racing activities within New York State. This includes thoroughbred racing, harness racing, quarter horse racing and off-track betting. The precursor of the current board was the State Racing Commission, which had been established in 1895. The fundamental purpose of New York State's horse racing authorities has always been to ensure that the sport is conducted in an honest and ethical manner, which would include placing the welfare of the equine athletes as a top priority.