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Tuesday, August 29, 2017 4:23 PM
  • General
  • Spiral Stakes

Kentucky Cup Classic to Return

Aug. 29, 2017 (FLORENCE, Ky.) – Turfway Park will open its 59th season Nov. 29 with upgrades to its most important day of racing as well as modifications to its stakes schedule, General Manager Daniel “Chip” Bach announced today.

One significant change is the resurrection of the Kentucky Cup Classic, to be run on the Spiral Stakes (G3) undercard. Last run in 2011 as a Grade 2 race, the Kentucky Cup Classic trophy has gone to such standouts as dual classic winners Tabasco Cat, Silver Charm and Thunder Gulch, Dubai World Cup winner Roses in May and Grade 1 winners Perfect Drift and Hard Spun.

In addition, the Wintergreen Stakes for older fillies and mares will take a new name, the Latonia Stakes, and gain new visibility as well as a $25,000 purse increase. The new name recalls the original Latonia Race Track, which operated from 1883 to 1939 about 10 miles north of present-day Turfway Park, and is Turfway’s original name. The race also moves to the Spiral Stakes undercard, joining the Classic, the Bourbonette Oaks (G3) and the Rushaway Stakes.

“Reviving the Kentucky Cup Classic and celebrating our history with the Latonia Stakes will make Spiral Stakes day more exciting for fans,” said Bach. “Adding stakes for older horses rounds out the card and gives trainers wider opportunities and greater incentive to ship. Three-year-olds looking to enhance their chances at making the Kentucky Derby or Oaks field will have that opportunity in the Spiral or Bourbonette. Focusing on higher caliber races across the entire card will make the day more attractive to bettors as well.”

The Spiral Stakes will continue its role as a Kentucky Derby (G1) prep race, offering 34 points—20 to the winner—and move to March 17, seven weeks before the Run for the Roses. The Bourbonette Oaks will offer 34 points toward the Kentucky Oaks (G1).

The revamped Spiral Stakes day will feature five stakes, with the balance of the card reserved for maiden special weight and allowance races:

  • $200,000 Spiral Stakes (G3) for 3-year-olds, 9 furlongs
  • $100,000 Bourbonette Oaks (G3) for 3-year-old fillies, 8 furlongs
  • $100,000 Kentucky Cup Classic (BT) for 4-year-olds and up, 9 furlongs
  • $75,000 Latonia Stakes (BT) for older fillies and mares, 8.5 furlongs
  • $75,000 Rushaway (listed) for 3-year-olds, 8.5 furlongs

In another schedule change, all stakes except those on Spiral Stakes day and the WEBN Stakes will run Friday evenings instead of Saturdays. These include the Holiday Inaugural on Dec. 1; the Prairie Bayou on Dec. 29; the Forego on Jan. 19; the Cincinnati Trophy, a prep for the Bourbonette, on Feb. 9; and the Battaglia Memorial, a prep for the Spiral, on Feb. 23. The WEBN Stakes will run on closing day, Saturday, March 31. The Battaglia Memorial is listed; the others are black type.

Turfway will race Wednesday through Saturday from opening day on Nov. 29 through Dec. 31 and Thursday through Saturday from Jan. 1 through the close of the season on March 31.

For all days except the last three Saturdays, first post will be 6:15 p.m. ET. Beginning with the Spiral Stakes, racing on the final three Saturdays—March 17, 24 and 31—will begin at 1:10 p.m. ET.

Dates for 2018 are pending approval by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission.


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