Another summer weekend means another great round of stakes races to watch and wager from tracks around the country.
On Saturday, the Grade 1, $1,000,000 Pacific Classic at Del Mar will pit three powerhouse horses against one another — California Chrome, Beholder and Dortmund. At Saratoga, the undefeated Songbird puts her 9 for 9 streak on the line in the Grade 1, $600,000 Alabama Stakes, which has been won by 21 different Eclipse award winners. Both tracks have attractive under cards as well.
Kaleem Shah’s (of Reston, Virginia) Dortmund and jockey Martin Garcia, right, hold off Firing Line and jockey Gary Stevens to win the Grade III $150,000 Robert B. Lewis Stakes Saturday, February 7, 2015 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, CA.
Virginia residents can bet the action via one of three on line wagering partner companies — TVG.com (who is sponsor of the Pacific Classic), XPressBet.com and TwinSpires.com.
Here’s the lineup to make sure you don’t miss the key races:
*At Saratoga, the Grade I, $500,00 Fourstardave Stakes is Race 9 at 5:40 PM and the Alabama is Race 10 at 6:18 PM.
*At Del Mar, the Grade I, $300,000 Del Mar Oaks is Race 6 at 7:43 PM, the Grade 2, $250,000 Del Mar Handicap is Race 8 at 8:43 PM and the Pacific Classic is Race 9 at 9:15 PM.
There is plenty of harness stakes action on Saturday too. Mohegan Sun Pocono has a stakes filled bonanza featuring the $500,000 Battle of Brandywine (3 Year Old Open Pace), $500,000 The Colonial (3 Year Old Open Trot), and $350,000 Valley Forge (3 Year Old Filly Pace). On Sunday, the Red Mile hosts 8 Kentucky Sire Stakes races, each worth $175,000.
Long On Value wins the Jamestown Stakes at Colonial Downs as a 2 year old in 2013. Courtesy of Coady Photography.
Virginia-bred horses have a busy weekend too. Long On Value, fresh off a win in the Lucky Coin Stakes, looks to make it two straight at Saratoga in Saturday’s $100,000 Troy Stakes (on the Alabama under card). The 5 year old son of Value Plus was bred by the Snow Lantern Thoroughbreds and has earned $111,920 this year already.
35 Virginia-breds are competing in overnight races in the Mid-Atlantic region between Friday and Sunday this weekend. All are eligible for a 25% bonus if they win, courtesy of the new HBPA/VTA incentive program which began July 1st. 17 are eligible Friday, 10 on Saturday and 8 on Sunday.
Finally, next Saturday (August 27th) is Travers Stakes Day at Saratoga which features the annual Mid-Summer Derby and a total of six Grade I stakes races!