DEL MAR, Calif. (May 15, 2014) — For its 75th summer session of Thoroughbred sport, Del Mar will set a new high for stakes purses with $8,050,000 being offered for 43 events sprinkled across the historic track’s primary 36-day season starting on July 17 and running through September 3.
The 33 “advertised” stakes will carry purses ranging for $100,000 to $1,000,000, while the 10 “overnight” stakes each will be worth $90,000. Additionally, the seaside oval is projected to provide horsemen with more than $700,000 in daily purses, the richest in the state of California and among the richest of any race meeting in America.
Once again providing the most pizzazz among the track’s best races is the $1,000,000 TVG Pacific Classic, which will have its 24th running on Sunday, August 24 as the headliner on a stakes tripleheader program. The mile and one-quarter testing for 3-year-olds and up offers Grade I status and a $600,000 winner’s share.
Though the track will open on a Thursday this year, it will follow recent pattern and race Wednesday through Sunday for most of the meet. There also will be an additional – and traditional — day of sport on Labor Day Monday (September 1). First post daily is regularly 2 p.m. with the exceptions of Fridays when the popular “Four O’Clock Friday” programs (which include a post-race band) are in vogue. Additionally, first post will be at 1 p.m. for the big TVG Pacific Classic Day card.
Following its traditional summer season, Del Mar – for the first time – will come back with fall racing and a 15-day meeting that will run from November 7 through November 30.
“We’ve got a doubleheader on tap for the first time this year,” said Del Mar Thoroughbred Club’s president and CEO Joe Harper. “Our fall meet is drawing a lot of buzz and looking very exciting. But first we’ve got a classic summer season full of big purses, good horses and more Del Mar fun than you can shake a stick at.”
All told, the track will offer seven Grade I races starting with the Eddie Read Stakes at nine furlongs on the grass on its opening Sunday (July 20) and finishing with the Del Mar Futurity at seven furlongs on closing day. Other cream-of-the-crop events are the Bing Crosby Stakes at six furlongs (July 27), the Clement L. Hirsch Stakes and a mile and one-sixteenth (August 2), the Del Mar Oaks at nine panels on the lawn (August 16) and the Del Mar Debutante at seven eighths (August 30).