LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Churchill Downs will pick up two graded stakes races previously run at sister track Arlington Park during the Kentucky track’s 38-day spring meet.
The $100,000 Matron and the $100,000 Chicago Handicap are both for older fillies and mares and are Grade 3 races. The 80th edition of the Matron will be run at 1 1/16 miles on May 20, and the 28th edition of the Chicago Handicap will be contested at seven furlongs on June 24.
Churchill Downs racing secretary Ben Huffman says the pair of stakes races from Arlington Park would otherwise have gone on hiatus.
The addition of the two races raises the total stakes purses to $8.84 million for the spring meet, an increase of $200,000 from the $8.64 million in purses offered last year.
Arlington Park outside Chicago is owned by Churchill Downs Inc.
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. — Triple Crown winner Justify won’t be running during the 150th meet at Saratoga Race Course, but many of the best thoroughbreds will be at the historic track for the 40-day season.
The meet features 69 stakes races worth $18.8 million in purses and opens Friday. Among those running this season will be Good Magic, Hofburg, Gronkowski, Vino Rosso, and Bravazo.
Todd Pletcher is eyeing his 13th training title in 16 years. He won last year with 40 winners, one more than Chad Brown.
Justify has returned to Del Mar in California after swelling in his left front ankle emerged two weeks ago. Trainer Bob Baffert says Justify probably will walk around the stable area the next two weeks.
The colt likely will return in the fall, the ultimate goal being the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic at Churchill Downs in November.
DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) Triple Crown winner Justify has re-located to Del Mar where trainer Bob Baffert is keeping him under observation after swelling in his left front ankle emerged two weeks ago.
Baffert says Justify will probably just walk around the stable area for the next two weeks at the track north of San Diego. The probable scenario for the colt is a return to racing sometime in the fall with the ultimate goal being the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic at Churchill Downs in November.
“Right now, we’re just looking to get him 100 percent,” Baffert said Monday. “We’re in a holding pattern. I’d love to run him again because he’s so much fun and exciting to watch. We should know more in a couple of weeks.”
Justify has won all six starts in his brief career that began this year. He has won four straight Grade 1 races, including a sweep of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont to become horse racing’s 13th Triple Crown champion.
The colt hasn’t had a workout since the Belmont Stakes on June 9.