Despite heat wave, the race is still on at Monmouth Park

The heat index is expected to crash through 100 degrees this weekend, closing horse racing tracks in Maryland and Delaware, but the show will go on at Monmouth Park.

A crowd of 40,000 people are expected to be in attendance for the Haskell Invitational, one of the state’s marquee racing events. This year’s race will feature a 7-horse field that includes Maximum Security, the horse that was disqualified at the Kentucky Derby.

However, with such extreme temperatures expected, some are raising concerns over the safety of the horses.

“It’s foolish and reckless to race horses this weekend, there's just no two ways about it,” said Kathy Guillermo, Senior Vice President at PETA.

“We gotten a lot of extra precaution. We have mist machines, we have a lot of extra ice and water, we have multitudes of additional hoses on our water trucks to cool down all the horses,” said Dennis Drazin, chairman and CEO of Darby Development, operators of Monmouth Park. 

The race is slated to start at 5:47 p.m., but according to Drazin, as a last resort the race could be moved to 8 p.m.