Churchill Downs Opening weekend of the spring meet opens Saturday - April 27, 2013
The 139th annual runnings of the $2 million-guaranteed Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (Grade I), America's greatest race and the opening leg of racing's elusive Triple Crown, and the $1 million Kentucky Oaks (GI), the nation's premiere race for 3-year-old fillies, top an impressive schedule of 24 stakes races carrying total purses of $7.475 million that will be featured during the 2013 Spring Meet that will open Saturday, April 27 and run through Sunday, June 30 at historic Churchill Downs Racetrack .
While the Derby and Oaks are among the most anticipated events on the American racing calendar, other marquee stakes events on the 2013 Spring Meet schedule include three more Grade I events in the $500,000-added Stephen Foster Handicap, a 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-olds and up that has become of the nation's most significant events for older horses; the $500,000-added Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, a Kentucky Derby Day event for 4-year-olds & up at 1 1/8 miles on the Matt Winn Turf Course; and the $300,000-added Humana Distaff, for fillies and mares ages 4 & up at seven furlongs that is also a Derby Day fixture.
Churchill Downs will continue its emphasis on "big event" days that feature several stakes events. Kentucky Derby Day on Saturday, May 4 will offer six stakes races and total purses of $3.575 million. Six stakes races also are set for Kentucky Oaks Day on Friday, May 5. The purse total for the half-dozen Oaks Day races is $2.1 million.
Information about the Kentucky Derby can be found at www.kentuckyderby.com and at www.ChurchillDowns.com.