ARCADIA, Calif. (Aug. 31, 2013) -- The Oak Tree Racing Association, which for 42 years between 1969 and 2010 ran a fall race meeting that annually was one of the high points of Southern California racing, has not seen its flag fly for racing purposes for the past two seasons. But the not-for-profit corporation that channeled its profits into research, development and breeding, as well as other worthy charitable causes keyed by the theme of “horsemen helping horsemen,” still has a presence in the industry.
On the final two days of its race meeting, Del Mar will run the second editions of races Oak Tree helped establish and fund – the Oak Tree Juvenile Fillies Turf on Monday and the Oak Tree Juvenile Turf on Wednesday.
Both races are at a mile on grass with $100,000 purses and quickly have become key stepping stones to their race counterparts on the Breeders’ Cup programs, which this year will be run at Santa Anita Park on November 1 and 2. (The Oak Tree Racing Association previously had hosted the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita five times -- 1986, 1993, 2003, 2008 and 2009.)
Last year the Oak Tree board also enabled the shift of one of its signature races – the Yellow Ribbon Handicap – to Del Mar. The mile and one-sixteenth turf race carries a $150,000 purse and again will be presented at the shore track this year, serving as the featured event on Monday’s triple-stakes card.
The Oak Tree Racing Association continues to function as a positive force on the racing landscape in California through its president John Barr, its executive vice-president Sherwood Chillingworth, and its directors – Dr. Jack Robbins, Thomas Capehart, Dr. Rick Arthur, Richard Mandella, Warren Williamson and Robert Zamarripa, Sr.