BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Park Heights is buzzing around the clock as thousands of workers prepare Pimlico for the biggest race in Baltimore.
The Preakness Stakes is Saturday, and while the post position draw was held Wednesday, there’s still work to be done before Pimlico opens its gates to fans.
“The Preakness is really about the people,” Tiffani Steer, of the Stronach Group, said.
To prepare Pimlico Race Course for the Preakness it takes a team of 9,000 full- and part-time staff members.
“This is a 365-day year-round event for the team here at the Maryland Jockey Club,” Steer said. “Right when the Preakness goes off on Saturday, we start planning for the one next year.”
The center of attention around the Preakness has been whether or not the race will stay at Pimlico in the future.
The racetracks ownership group is being sued by the City of Baltimore and is accused of disinvesting in Pimlico to move the race to another track.
A few months ago, almost 7,000 grandstand seats were deemed unsafe and unusable.
“So 3,300 guests who had purchased those original seats, we have found new spots for them,” Steer said. “As you see when you head out to the infield, we have placed new temporary bleachers and seating. So we are doing everything we can to accommodate that.”
Crews are also working on sprucing up the VIP tents and putting up structures for Infield Fest ahead of Saturday’s race.
The track at Pimlico is drying out from recent rain, but officials said that it can never be as wet as it was last year.