Delta Downs Racetrack Casino & Hotel has announced its 2016-17 Thoroughbred stakes schedule. The track will offer a total of 32 stakes races during its 84-day season that runs from October 19, 2016 through March 11, 2017. The stakes schedule offers $ 4.6 million in total purse money.
The annual highlight of the season will come on Saturday, November 19 when the track hosts the 14th running of Jackpot Day featuring the $ 1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot (Gr. 3) for 2-year-olds competing at 1-1/16 miles. Jackpot Day will include eight stakes races and total purse money of more than $ 2.3 million.
The $ 1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot is expected to once again be part of Churchill Downs ‘Road to the Kentucky Derby’ series of races. The Jackpot race has produced a total of eight starters for the Kentucky Derby since 2012 when Churchill Downs first implemented its qualifying system that features points of 10-4-2-1 to the top four Jackpot finishers. Since its inception in 2003 the Jackpot has produced 14 starters for the Derby overall.
Other important races on Jackpot Day include the $ 400,000 Delta Downs Princess (Gr. 3) for 2-year-old fillies; the $ 250,000 Delta Mile for 3-year-olds and up; the $ 200,000 Treasure Chest for fillies and mares; the $ 150,000 Louisiana Legacy for Louisiana-bred freshmen colts and geldings; and the $ 150,000 Louisiana Jewel for 2-year-old Louisiana-bred fillies.
Delta Downs will also card a pair of important stakes races at the beginning of the season which could have a major impact on the Jackpot Day program. The winner of the $ 200,000 Jean Lafitte Stakes on October 22 will get an automatic berth into the $ 1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot and the winner of the $ 100,000 My Trusty Cat on October 21 will score a bid into the $ 400,000 Delta Downs Princess.
On Saturday, February 11 the track will host another edition of Louisiana Premier Night featuring 10 stakes races for Louisiana-bred horses. The highlight of the program will be the $ 200,000 Louisiana Premier Night Championship for older horses competing at 1-1/16 miles. The Louisiana Premier Night card will offer a total of $ 1,030,000 in purse money.
Delta Downs renamed one of its stakes races this year to honor an Eclipse Award winner. The $ 75,000 Take Charge Brandi Stakes, which will take place on Saturday, March 4, will replace the By The Light Stakes. Take Charge Brandi won the $ 400,000 Delta Downs Princess in 2014 before being honored with the Champion 2-year-old Filly title that year.
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