LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) Churchill Downs’ opening weekend features stakes races awarding points toward the Kentucky Derby and Oaks along with berths in the Breeders’ Cup.
The $200,000 Grade 2 Pocahontas for 2-year-old fillies and $150,000 Grade 3 Iroquois for juvenile colts headline four stakes races on Saturday. The winners of both 1 1/16-mile stakes automatically qualify for the Breeders’ Cup at Del Mar on Nov. 4 and earn 10 points toward the Derby and Oaks.
Dale Romans meanwhile can surpass Hall of Famer Bill Mott as Churchill’s winningest trainer with three horses entered on Friday’s 10-race opening card. Romans’ 699 career wins are just two behind the 63-year-old Mott, who has held the mark for 31 years.
Racing will occur Thursdays to Sundays through Oct. 1 with a 12:45 p.m. first post most days.