Recently, I wrote about the new changes for the Kentucky Derby contenders selection process for OnlineKentuckyDerby.com. There, I discussed the new list of races used to build a points system that would determine the top 20 Thoroughbreds for the 2013 Kentucky Derby.
After scouring the web, I realized that no one was posting about the dates for this new Prep Race selection in a comprehensive way. Of course, racetracks avoid posting the dates of the races that are still months away. Despite this, I wanted an organized calender of Prep Races since the first race begins in September 2012.
Although we cannot know when the races will be officially set, we can rely on the typical date these races have been held in the past. For example, the Kentucky Derby is always the first Saturday in May. We can assume that if a race usually happens the last Saturday in September -- it will likely be held at the same time during the 2012-2013 season.
Estimated and confirmed 2013 Derby Prep Races
More of a general idea than an absolute; below are the 19 Prep Races for the Kentucky Derby Championship Series. The series ends at the end of February and continues with 15 more races until April 27, 2013. The second and third set of races on the Road to the Roses are now called the First and Second Leg of the Kentucky Derby Championship Series.
Each Road to the Roses Prep Race is listed with an advertised or approximated date. This sequence also includes which graded stakes ranking the race has historically carried, the last winner, and the last awarded purse. All information was gleaned from the horse racing results at HorseRacingNation.com, BloodHorse.com, DRF.com.
Royal Lodge Stakes, Grade 2, Newmarket, England. September 24, 2011 winner: Daddy Long Legs, £100,000. Approximate 2012 date, September 22.
Norfolk Stakes, Grade 1, Santa Anita, CA. October 1, 2011 winner: Creative Cause, $250,000. Confirmed 2012 date is September 29.
Dixiana Breeders' Futurity, Grade 1, Keeneland, Lexington, KY. October 8, 2011 winner: Dullahan, $500,000. Confirmed 2012 date is October 6.
Champagne Stakes, Grade 1, Belmont, NY. October 8, 2011 winner: Union Rags, $300,000. Confirmed 2012 date is October 6.
Grey Stakes, Grade 3, Woodbine, Canada. Sunday October 9, 2011 winner: Prospective, $200,000. Confirmed 2012 date is October 7.
Breeders' Cup Juvenile, Grade 1 (2012 Santa Anita). November 5, 2011 winner: Hansen, $1,000,000. Confirmed 2012 date is November 2.
Delta Downs Jackpot, Grade 3, Delta Downs, LA. November 19, 2011 winner: Sabercat, $1,000,000. Confirmed 2012 date is November 17.
Remsen Stakes, Grade 2, Aqueduct, NY. November 26, 2011 winner: O'Prado Again, $200,000. Confirmed 2012 date is November 24.
Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes, Grade 2, Churchill Downs, KY. November 26, 2011 winner: Gemologist, $150,000. Confirmed 2012 date is November 24.
CashCall Futurity, Grade 1, Hollywood Park, CA. December 17, 2011 winner: Liason, $750,000. Confirmed 2012 date is December 15.
Sham Stakes, Grade 3, Santa Anita, CA. January 8, 2012 winner: Out Of Bounds, $100,000. Approximate 2013 date is January 6.
Lecomte Stakes, Grade 3, Fair Grounds, LA. January 21, 2012 winner: Mr. Bowling, $175,000*. Approximate 2013 date is January 19. *2013 purse increased to $200,000.
Smarty Jones Stakes, non-graded stakes race, Oaklawn Park, AK. January 16, 2012 winner: Junebugred, $100,000. Approximate 2013 date is January 14.
Holy Bull Stakes, Grade 3, Gulfstream Park, FL. January 29, 2012 winner: Algorithms, $400,000. Approximate 2013 date is January 27.
Robert B. Lewis Stakes, Grade 2, Santa Anita, CA. February 4, 2012 winner: I'll Have Another, $200,000. Approximate 2013 date is February 2.
Sam F. Davis Stakes, Grade 3, Tampa Bay Downs, FL. February 4, 2012 winner: Battle Hardened, $250,000. Approximate 2013 date is February 2.
Withers Stakes, Grade 3, Aqueduct, NY. February 4, 2012 winner: Alpha, $200,000. Approximate 2013 date is February 2.
El Camino Real Derby, Grade 3, Golden Gate, CA. February 18, 2012 winner: Daddy Nose Best, $200,000. Approximate 2013 date is February 16.
Southwest Stakes, Grade 3, Oaklawn Park, AK. February 20, 2012 winner: Castaway, $250,000. Approximate 2013 date is February 18.
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Union Rags: Next Start, Race: Fan's View
Maryam Louise is a longtime resident of the Bluegrass State and has lived in the shadows of Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky over the past two decades. In addition to being a fan of horse racing, she has also had a chance to get to know jockeys, horse groomers, and betting clerks as an ESL instructor. Currently, she writes for KentuckyDerby.org and relies on her friends in the multiple facets of the equine industry for writing inspiration.