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It was a pretty light week in the world of graded stakes horse racing as nearly every winter weekend is. Thank goodness for Betfair Hollywood Park and Gulfstream! Last weekend both tracks hosted intriguing graded stakes races - two took place at Hollywood Park and another at Gulfstream. Let's take a look at all the happenings starting at Hollywood Park.
The Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet comes our way from Betfair Hollywood Park this Saturday, December 6. Two year old fillies will be featured as they go 1 1/16 miles on Hollywood Park's synthetic track in search of their share of the very nice $500,000 purse.
Betfair Hollywood Park will be the scene of The Bayakoa, a Grade 2 stakes race for fillies three years old and upward this Saturday, December 8. The race will cover 1 1/16 miles on Hollywood Park's synthetic track and a $200,000 purse will be on the line.
The Grade 3 Sugar Swirl Stakes takes place this Saturday, December 8 from Gulfstream Park. Horses three years old and upward will dash six furlongs on Gulfstream's main track as they go after the winner's portion of the $100,000 purse.
The Grade 3 Vernon O. Underwood Stakes is on tap for this Sunday, December 2 from Betfair Hollywood Park. Horses three years old and upward will be featured as they go six furlongs on Hollywood Park's all weather track in search of their share of the $100,000 purse.
Nothing says winter in the horse racing world like the opening day at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Florida. That day is this Saturday, December 1 - the launch of a 61 race stakes program! The highlight of Opening Weekend is the start of the 14th running of the $850,000 Claiming Crown, a program of seven races for horses that have competed at least once in claiming races. Gulfstream Park gets the Claiming Crown for the first time and it kicks off opening weekend, Saturday, Dec. 1, Day 1 of the 90-date meeting that will run through April 5. More than 200 trainers have descended on Gulfstream for the Claiming Crown.
The Road to the Kentucky Derby is in full swing and this past weekend welcomed two new contenders into the mix - Victories by Overanalyze in the Remsen at Aqueduct and Uncaptured in the Kentucky Jockey Club at Churchill Downs Nov. 24 propelled the 2-year-olds into the numbers four and five positions, respectively, in the standings. The new points system replaces the old system in which contenders would gain berths into the May Classic on the basis of purse earned in graded stakes action.
Betfair Hollywood Park will be the scene of the Grade 3 Native Diver Handicap this Saturday, December 1. Horses three years old and upward will go 1 1/8 miles on Hollywood Park's all weather track as they chase their share of the $250,000 purse.
Thanksgiving weekend is over and so is another insane weekend of graded stakes action. Top notch horse races took place all over North America this weekend with huge races at Aqueduct, Betfair Hollywood Park and even north of the border at Woodbine. Let's review some of the action starting at Aqueduct.
Betfair Hollywood Park will host a pair of Grade 1 races this Sunday, November 25. The first is the Matriarch Stakes which will feature fillies and mares three years old and upward as they go 1 mile on Hollywood's turf track in search of their share of the $250,000 purse.
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