VINTON, LA. - Led by Breeders' Cup Juvenile Sprint champion Hightail, the Delta Downs' racing office received 15 pre-entries Tuesday to this year's $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot (Gr. III), which will celebrate its 10th anniversary on Saturday, November 17. The Jackpot Day program will have a special first post time of 1:15 p.m. CST and it will feature eight stakes races and more than $2.2 million in total purse money awarded.
This year's $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot field could be the most accomplished in its history. In addition to Hightail, there are three graded stakes winners and four graded stakes placed horses pre-entered for the race. First prize in the Jackpot is $600,000.
The graded stakes winners include Bern Identity, winner of the Grade II Sanford at Saratoga for trainer Kelly Breen; Know More, trained by Doug O'Neill, who won the Grade II Best Pal at Del Mar and Overanalyze, trained by Todd Pletcher, who took the Grade II Futurity at Belmont Park. The other graded stakes placed pre-entrant is Goldencents, also trained by O'Neill, who finished second to Shanghai Bobby in the Grade I Champagne at Belmont Park. O'Neill guided the 3-year-old I'll Have Another to victories in this year's Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes.
Hightail could become the first Breeders' Cup Champion to ever run in the $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot. The D. Wayne Lukas trainee broke his maiden last week while taking the $500,000 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Sprint at Santa Anita. Should the son of Kentucky-bred son of Mineshaft make to the starting gate, it would mark the first starter in the race for the legendary Hall of Fame conditioner.
This year's $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot also attracted a supplemental entry for the first time in history as Klaravich Stables, Inc. and William H. Lawrence paid the $10,000 fee to pre-enter Central Banker. The Albert Stall, Jr. trainee was very impressive while winning an allowance race at Churchill Downs on October 28, just eight days after the regular nominations closed for the $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot.
Listed below are this year's 15 pre-entrants to the $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot in order of career earnings.
Final entries and post positions will be drawn for this year's $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot on Wednesday, November 14. First preference for the race will be given to Bern Identity, who won the Jean Lafitte Stakes at Delta Downs on October 20. After that, preference will be given to those horses that have finished first, second or third in a grade I or grade II race, then preference goes to those horses that have finished in the money in any graded stakes. The final determinant to get into the field will be lifetime earnings at the time of pre-entries closing.
Delta Downs Jackpot betting at Santa Anita with OffTrackBetting.com
The $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot is part of the new `Road to the Kentucky Derby' series, which includes 36 stakes leading up to next year's big race at Churchill Downs on Saturday, May 4. The top four finishers in this year's $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot will be awarded points on a 10-4-2-1 scale toward a possible starting position in the first leg of the 2013 Triple Crown.
For more information about the $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot, including the special $100,000 guaranteed Pick 4 wager that will take place during the program, visit deltadownsracing.com. Additional information about the race can also be found on the `Delta Downs Racing' page on Facebook, and by following Delta Downs on Twitter with the account @deltaracing.