Category Archives: Racing

Tyler Gaffalione Races to First Place Finish in 144th Preakness Stakes

Tyler Gaffalione and War Of Will. Photo By: Jim McCue/The Maryland Jockey Club.

Gilbert, AZ – May 22, 2019 – On Saturday, May 18, a field of 13 horses were led to the finish line by American Equus Chosen Rider Tyler Gaffalione during the 144th run of the Preakness Stakes. Starting at the number one post, Gaffalione piloted Gary Barber’s War Of Will, trained by Mark Cassee, through the 1 3/16 mile race at the Pimlico track in Baltimore, Maryland. Capturing the middle jewel of the Triple Crown, this victory marks Gaffalione’s first Triple Crown win as a jockey.

As the largest Preakness Stakes since 2011, a crowd of 131,256 people watched on as Gaffalione and the 6-1 third betting choice horse made their move through an opening on the rail in the final turn to take the lead and gallop to the finish line. Their impressive time of 1 minute and 54.34 seconds ultimately added to the list of Gaffalione’s 1,086 career wins.

Other American Equus jockeys, Ricardo Santana and Javier Castellano, had an outstanding showing at Pimlico. Santana guided New York Central to a win in the Maryland Sprint Stakes G3 in Saturday’s schedule, while Castellano won an unprecedented 4 races on Friday, including the Black Eyed Susan G2 Stakes on Point of Honor.

“This win marks our companies third back-to-back Preakness win since gaining our first one in 2017. With this additional title we now hold four Triple Crown wins thanks to the world-class jockeys that trust our product and brand to carry them around the track. Tyler Gaffalione is a great representation of the talent we are lucky to have represent us. The whole team at American Equus is proud of this great accomplishment,” shares David Shano, Founder and CEO of America Equus. “With Belmont only three weeks away we cannot wait to see what War Of Will can accomplish next.”

For a complete list of results in the 144th Preakness Stakes, click here.

Media Contact: Lenore Phillips
561-753-3389 |

Chilean Champ Santona Euthanized at 25

Santona at Old Friends (Photo: Laura Battles)

GEORGETOWN, KY – MAY 7, 2019 – Chilean champion Santona has died. The 25-year-old mare was euthanized at Park Equine Hospital at Woodford on May 5th due to complications from colic.

Santona had been pensioned at Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Farm in Georgetown, KY, since 2011. Michael Blowen, founder and President of Old Friends, made the announcement of her passing.

Bred in Chile by Haras Santa Isabel, Santona (Winning – Syracuse, by Sharp-Eyed Quillo) won the Grade 1 Las Oaks at Club Hipico De Santiago in 1997. That year she was named Champion grass mare in Chile, and was then brought to the United States in 1998 by owner-breeder Earle I. Mack.

Campaigned by Mack and trainer Jimmy Jerkins for four starts in New York, Santona never regained her top race form and was retired to the breeding shed.

Her colt by Grand Slam, Grand Hombre, won the Pennsylvania Derby in 2003 and earned over $900,000.

“Mr. Mack adored Santona, and Old Friends was honored to care for her for these last years,” said Blowen. “She was extremely intelligent and very competitive.  She will be missed by all of her mare friends and human caretakers.”

For more information, please call (502) 863-1775 or visit the website at

MEDIA CONTACT: Cynthia Grisolia, (347) 423-7322,; Michael Blowen (502) 863-1775,

United States’ Popular Sport of Horse Racing

Horse racing is an ancient sport. Its origins date back to about 4500 BC among the nomadic tribesmen of Central Asia (who first domesticated the horse). Since then, horse racing has flourished as the sport of kings. In the modern day, horse racing is one of the few forms of gambling that is legal throughout most of the world, including the United States. You will want to take advantage of the BetAmerica promo code so read these details about the bonus here. This promotion is available to all players who have never held a BetAmerica account. Players receive one 100% matched deposit bonus, based on their first deposit.

Horse racing in the United States dates back to 1665, which saw the establishment of the Newmarket course in Salisbury, New York, a section of what is now known as the Hempstead Plains of Long Island. This first racing meet in North America was supervised by New York’s colonial governor, Richard Nicolls. The area is now occupied by the present Nassau County region of Greater Westbury and East Garden City.

Horse racing remains a popular sport throughout the United States. The American Stud Book was started in 1868, prompting the beginning of organized horse racing in the United States. Horse racing, especially thoroughbred racing, was a sport enjoyed by all during the progressive era.

There were 314 tracks operating in the United States by 1890, and in 1894, the American Jockey Club was formed. The anti-gambling sentiment prevalent in the early 20th century led almost all states to ban bookmaking. Bookmaking is the process of taking bets, calculating odds, and paying out winnings. This nearly eliminated horse racing altogether. When pari-mutuel betting was introduced in 1908, the racing industry turned around. Horse racing flourished until World War II.

The sport did not regain popularity in the United States until horses began to win the Triple Crown, a series of three races, consisting of the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes.

Jim Fitzsimmons and Bob Baffert are the only two trainers to have two horses win the Triple Crown, with Fitzsimmons training the sire/son combination of 1930 winner Gallant Fox and 1935 winner Omaha and Baffert training 2015 winner American Pharoah and 2018 winner Justify. The wins by Fitzsimmons were also the first time that an owner and the first time that a breeder, Belair Stud holding both duties, had a repeat win of the Triple Crown. Calumet Farm is the only other owner with two Triple Crown horses, 1941 winner Whirlaway and 1948 winner Citation. Eddie Arcaro is the only jockey to ride two horses to the Triple Crown, both for Calumet, Whirlaway, and Citation. Those two horses’ trainers, Ben Jones and Jimmy Jones, were father and son.

In the United States, Thoroughbred flat races are run on either dirt, synthetic, or turf surfaces. Other tracks offer Quarter Horse racing and Standardbred horse racing, or combinations of these three types of racing surfaces. Racing with other breeds, such as Arabian horse racing, is found on a limited basis. American Thoroughbred races are run at a wide variety of distances, most commonly from 5 to 12 furlongs (0.63 to 1.50 mi). The shorter distances are more common but the mid-to-long distance races tend to be higher in prestige. With this in mind, breeders of Thoroughbred race horses attempt to breed horses that excel at a particular distance.

Horse Racing in Pennsylvania

The Pennsylvania Derby is a race for thoroughbred horses run at Parx Racing and Casino (formerly known as Keystone Race Track, then from 1986 through 2010 as Philadelphia Park) each year. The track’s premiere event is open to horses, age three, willing to race 1.125 miles (9 furlongs) on the dirt and since 2007 normally offers a purse of $1 million.

To bet in Pennsylvania, get the promo from Pabets and claim the welcome bonus to double your first deposit up to $100. You need to be 21 or older and reside in Pennsylvania. Keep reading the PABets horse race betting review to find out more about this welcome offer and other features like the PABets mobile app.

In 2016, the purse was increased to $1.25 million because of the presence of the winners of two of the three Triple Crown races: Nyquist, winner of the 2016 Kentucky Derby, and Exaggerator, winner of the 2016 Preakness Stakes. If Creator, winner of the 2016 Belmont, had also raced, the purse would have been $1.5 million.

Pennsylvania Derby began on Memorial Day in 1979 and achieved Graded status in 1981. From 1990 until 2009, with the exception of 2006 due to extensive renovations, the race was held on Labor Day; in 2004, it was elevated to a Grade II event. Starting in 2010, the race moved to the last Saturday of September in an attempt to get a stronger field preparing for the Breeders’ Cup; the move to late September also made it possible to move away from another premier event, the Travers Stakes at Saratoga Race Course in New York State. In 2017 it was raised to Grade I status for the first time.

Liberty Bell Park Racetrack was an American race track in Northeast Philadelphia that held harness racing and Thoroughbred horse racing from 1963 until 1986. The site, northeast of the intersection of Knights and Woodhaven Roads, was derived from several farms and smaller farmettes.

The harness track was a .625 miles track, but when thoroughbred racing was made legal in 1968, a 1-mile track was built using the homestretch and front of the harness track until Keystone Race Track (now Parx Casino and Racing) was built in 1974.

Parx Casino and Racing (formerly Philadelphia Park Racetrack and Casino) is a thoroughbred horse racing venue and the largest casino gaming complex in Pennsylvania. Parx is located in Bensalem Township in Bucks County, northeast of the city of Philadelphia. Owned and operated by Greenwood Gaming and Entertainment, Inc., Parx features 24-hour gaming: 3,330 slot machines, 180 live table games, a poker room with 48 poker tables, live racing and simulcast action, sports betting, several dining options and bars, and the Xcite Center.

Presque Isle Downs & Casino is a casino and horse racing track near Erie, Pennsylvania, owned and operated by Churchill Downs Inc. The casino contains 1,600 slot machines. The 1-mile oval track opened on September 2, 2007. It is paved with the synthetic material Tapeta Footings (a mixture of sand, rubber, fiber with a wax coating). It was the first synthetic horse racetrack longer than 1 mile in the Northeast and the first racetrack paved with Tapeta in the United States.

On February 6, 2019, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board approved a sports betting license for Presque Isle Downs & Casino. The casino will construct a sportsbook and will also offer 50 self-betting kiosks.

Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course is a thoroughbred horse racing track and casino in Grantville, Pennsylvania, 17 miles east of Harrisburg. It is owned by Gaming and Leisure Properties and operated by Penn National Gaming.

The track opened on August 30, 1972. It consists of a 1-mile dirt course and a 7-furlong turf course. It is unusual among United States thoroughbred tracks in offering racing 52 weeks a year. It features the $200,000 Pennsylvania Governor’s Cup Handicap for horses three years old and up run 5 furlongs on the turf. In 2009 Cardashi, ridden by jockey David Cora, won in a 29-1 upset.

This track is home to Eclipse Special Award winner Rapid Redux and his trainer David J. Wells.

The Meadows Racetrack and Casino is a standardbred harness racing track and slot machine casino in North Strabane Township, Pennsylvania, United States, about 25 miles southwest of Pittsburgh. It is owned by Gaming and Leisure Properties and operated by Penn National Gaming.

Horse Racing in Virginia

The tradition of racing horses in Virginia began after the first horses were brought to its shores in 1609. The colonists in Virginia continued the English gambling tradition of betting on horses. The Virginia Company of London which financed the colonization of Virginia until 1624 had to rely on lotteries to survive at one point. After Charles II was restored to the throne in 1660, English society replaced the current Puritanism with widespread gambling.

TVG, the horse racing company founded in 1993, has licenses for online betting in 30 states in the US, including West Virginia. Get your TVG Promo code to participate in online betting. This full-time television horse racing service was introduced in 2009.

Horse racing then became identified as the “Sport of Kings” because only the very wealthy could afford to import horses for breeding or to maintain a horse for no productive use other than racing. Everyone could bet, but the gentry in colonial Virginia may have been the only class able to afford owning a race horse. In 1674, the York County court imposed a fine on a tailor who had the nerve to race his horse since it was “contrary to Law for a Labourer to make a race, it being a sport only for Gentlemen.”

Many races were 1/4-mile straight dashes held on Saturday afternoons on open fields and straight sections of road, or “best-of-three” challenges where horses would run separate races up to 3-4 miles in one day. The steeplechase race became the formal race that occurred on open courses through the Virginia countryside. These races were cross-country contests where start/finish lines were marked by steeples of churches, between drivers with wagons on roads and on circular racecourses.

The first racetrack in the colonies was built at Hempstead Plain on Long Island, NY and the first in Virginia was a 1-mile oval operating by 1739 at Williamsburg. Horses circled the track several times to complete one race, compared to today’s races of one-and-a-quarter miles (one-and-a-half miles for the Belmont Stakes).

In 1752, William Byrd III claimed he had the fastest horse in the colonies. That challenge was bold enough for a member of the Maryland aristocracy to walk his horse 150 miles to Anderson’s Race Ground in Gloucester for a match race. In the first Maryland-Virginia contest, the Maryland stallion beat Byrd’s horse plus two other Virginia stallions owned by John Tayloe. Byrd went on to demonstrate how excessive gambling can lead to bankruptcy.

In 1851 the General Court of Virginia ruled that horse racing was defined in state law as more of a sport than a game, and bets for less than $20 were not prohibited by state anti-gaming laws at that time.

Two racetracks were built in Alexandria County (now named Arlington County) when it was still part of the District of Columbia. The Alexandria track operated approximately 1760-1810. The Mount Vernon track operated between 1841-1845, until it closed due to poor management.

In the 1800s, horse tracks did not make their profits simply by taking a small share of every wager. Instead, tracks and gamblers bet against each other. The tracks had a direct interest in which horses won. A dishonest track that “fixed” a race could generate a major profit. Corruption and Victorian standards of conduct led to a public reaction against gambling. The General Assembly banned gambling at horse tracks in early 1894 but included a major exemption for tracks on sites owned by agricultural associations or fairs, and driving clubs or parks. Those organizations were not expected to allow gambling dens for the lower classes. The gamblers who managed establishments at Jackson City in Alexandria County, on the southern end of Long Bridge, found a way to continue.

The Colonial Downs Group built a racetrack located in New Kent County, Virginia. The track conducted Thoroughbred flat racing and Standardbred harness racing between 1997 and 2014. September 1, 1997, they constructed one of the largest tracks in size in the country but built a relatively small clubhouse. They also built OTBs prior to the opening of the track. The tract of land on which the track is built was obtained through an eminent domain suit brought by the State of Virginia against an African American/Native American family (Tero Johnson) that had owned the majority of the land since 1863.

Until 2005, the track was managed by the Maryland Jockey Club under a complicated agreement with Virginia and Maryland regulators and the Maryland-Virginia Racing Circuit. The track ran two legs of the annual Jacobs Investments Grand Slam of Grass. This event consisted of the Colonial Turf Cup and the Virginia Derby from Colonial Downs, the Secretariat Stakes from Arlington Park, and the Breeders’ Cup Turf.

The schedule originally ran from June 12 to August 4, 2009, but was later moved up one week. This allowed the track to run live racing on Belmont Stakes day, June 6. The fall harness meet ran 36 dates, from September 8 through November 7. The harness meet was timed to end on Breeders’ Cup weekend. Colonial Downs has not offered thoroughbred racing since 2013, due to a dispute between track management and horsemen’s groups. Harness racing ended the following year, and all track-affiliated betting sites were closed in April 2015.

In April 2018, Virginia enacted a law to allow historical racing machines (similar to slot machines) at the track and at off-track betting parlors, in an effort to make it economically viable to reopen the track. Weeks later, the track was purchased by the Chicago-based group, Revolutionary Racing, who alongside other investors then formed the current Colonial Downs Group, who currently own the track. Colonial Downs will hold its first race since 2013 on August 8th, 2019.

The following graded stakes were formerly run at Colonial Downs:

  • Grade 2 Colonial Turf Cup (since 2015, run at Laurel Park as the Commonwealth Turf Cup)
  • Grade 3 All Along Stakes (since 2015, run at Laurel Park)
  • Grade 3 Virginia Oaks (since 2015, run at Laurel Park as the Commonwealth Oaks)
  • The Grade 2 Stake, Virginia Derby, which will return to Colonial Downs on August 31, 2019.

Horse Races in the United States and Pari-mutuel Wagering

The traditional high point of US horse racing is the Kentucky Derby, held on the first Saturday of May at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. Together, the Derby; the Preakness Stakes, held two weeks later at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland; and the Belmont Stakes, held three weeks after the Preakness at Belmont Park on Long Island, form the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing for three-year-olds. They are all held early in the year, throughout May and the beginning of June.

As you are probably curious on how to bet online, know this: online horse betting is a difficult territory to break into for budding amateurs. With the quick guide on how to bet on horses, you’ll learn the basic online bet types in horse racing as well as the types of competitions you can expect. It is tempting to bet on the horse with the best name, but success depends more on your knowledge. Read about previous performances and prior victories from a jockey and trainer. Find this horse racing information easily online.

Horse racing apps make it easy to do your research on which horse to bet on as well as actually place your bets. It is recommended that you find an online horse racing book that you like and make an account. Wagering on the outcome of horse races has been the main source of the appeal of the sport since the beginning is the sole reason horse racing has survived as a major professional sport.

All betting at American tracks today is done using a pari-mutuel wagering system, which was developed by a Frenchman named Pierre Oller in the late 19th century. Under this system, a fixed percentage (usually 14%-25%) of the total amount wagered is taken out for racing purses, track operating costs and state and local taxes. The remaining sum is divided by the number of individual correct wagers to determine the payoff on each bet. The projected payoff, or “odds,” are continuously calculated and posted on the track tote board during the open betting period before each race. For example, odds of “2-1” means that the bettor will receive $2 profit for every $1 wagered ($3 total returned) if the horse wins.

Bettors may wager on a horse to win (finish first), place (finish first or second), or show (finish first, second, or third). Other popular wagers are the daily double (picking the winners of two consecutive races), exactas (picking the first and second horses in order), quinellas (picking the first and second horses in either order), and the pick six (picking the winners of six consecutive races).

The Breeders’ Cup event is held in late October or early November at different race tracks every year. It receives less attention than the Triple Crown series from the general public but is of great importance in determining the American Horse of the Year and annual Eclipse Award divisional winners. It is normally held at a different track every year, though some racetracks have held back-to-back renewals. It currently consists of thirteen races held over two days with total prize-money of $28 million.

There are also a Triple Crown of Harness Racing for Pacers and a Triple Crown of Harness Racing for Trotters, as well as an Arabian Triple Crown consisting of Drinkers of the Wind Derby in California, the Texas Six Shooter Stakes, the Bob Magness Derby in Delaware. Also, the main Standardbred event is the Breeders Crown.

Thoroughbred and Arabian fillies have their own “Triple” series, commonly referred to as The Triple Tiara. While there is some disagreement over which three races make up the Triple Tiara of Thoroughbred Racing, the Arabian list is more formal and consists of Daughters of the Desert Oaks in California, the Texas Yellow Rose Stakes, and the Cre Run Oaks in Delaware.

American betting on horse racing is sanctioned and regulated by the state the racetrack is located in. Simulcast betting almost always exist across state lines with no oversight except the companies involved through legalized pari-mutuel gambling. A takeout, or “take”, is removed from each betting pool and distributed according to state law, among the state, race track, and horsemen. On average, 17 percent is withheld from win, place and show pools, with 83 percent being returned to the winning players. A variety of factors affect takeout, namely location, and the type of wager that is placed. For example, one regional track circuit in the United States has four different takeout rates for different types of bets with a total blended rate that exceeds 20 percent.

Advanced deposit wagering is a form of gambling on the outcome of horse races in which the bettor must fund his or her account before being allowed to place bets. ADW is often conducted online or by phone. In contrast to ADW, credit shops allow wagers without advance funding; accounts are settled at month’s end. Racetrack owners, horse trainers, and state governments sometimes receive a cut of ADW revenues. It typically involves betting on horse or greyhound racing. Wagering may take place through pari-mutuel pools.

Secretariat holds the stakes record for each of the Triple Crown races, the Kentucky Derby (1:59 2/5), the Preakness Stakes (1:53), and the Belmont Stakes (2:24).

At 18, Steve Cauthen became the youngest jockey to win the Triple Crown, riding Affirmed in 1978. At 52, Mike Smith became the oldest jockey to win the Triple Crown, riding Justify in 2018.

Serengeti Empress Wins 2019 Longines Kentucky Oaks

Jose Ortiz riding Serengeti Empress – Diane Bondareff / AP Images for Longines.

Louisville, KY (USA) / Saint-Imier (Switzerland), May 4, 2019 –Swiss watchmaking brand Longines returned to Churchill Downs in 2019 to reprise its role as the Title Partner, Official Timekeeper, and Official Watch of the Longines Kentucky Oaks. The winged hourglass brand honored the impressive victory of Serengeti Empress, ridden by Jose Ortiz, in the Longines Kentucky Oaks race by presenting the winning filly’s owner, trainer, and jockey with Longines watches in the winner’s circle.

Second only to the Triple Crown races in viewership and interest, the Longines Kentucky Oaks has become a much-anticipated spectacle of elegance and performance. That spectacle included not just the powerful 3-year-old fillies who ran for the prize, but also the elegant men and women who walked the pink carpet at Churchill Downs wearing their best and seeking to win the Longines Prize for Elegance.

© 2019 Ana Martins Communications

Horse Derby Odds: How Sure Are You Betting On?

Image Source:

Betting in sports can be a fun and profitable undertaking. But like most good things in life, there are pitfalls to be aware of. Many positive experiences should be enjoyed as long as you bet in moderation and under control. We know that you’ve heard this before, but it certainly bears repeating: don’t bet money that you can’t afford to lose, either emotionally or financially.

It is not a complicated process to bet on horse racing. Most often, when your bet doesn’t pay off, you place your bet, take your ticket, and tear it up. However, you can make your ticket back to the window and collect your winnings if you’re lucky or skilled.

Understanding Derby Odds

For people who don’t understand how betting on horse racing works and what all the numbers mean, betting on it can be very intimidating. You must learn the basics understanding of horse racing so that it will be easier to bet and eventually quickly identify trends and opportunities.

Before anything else, it is a must to know how betting should be done in your state. There are a lot of ways to bet, and it can be through online bet or at a casino. How to read the prices is the first thing you need to know.

The bets of other people influence the odds. You bet alongside other people in horse racing. Remember, the more people who bet on a horse, and the lower the odds will be. Because odds can fluctuate until the start of the race, any winning bets will be paid on whatever odds have been when betting closes.

Particularly in TVG picks, which will be running on its 145th derby race on May 4, 2019. Horse race fans are eager and excited to strategize their bets through monitoring the derby odds. To help you more on your betting game, here are some factors that may help you.

Taking the Tides of Luck to You

Luck and racing of horses go hand in hand. But horse racing luck isn’t as random as many people might think. Considering some factors most likely increase your chances of winning in horse racing. In fact, knowing the trend and statistics of each horse racer is considered as a luck magnet and a significant element in the equation of the betting game.  Call to mind that the most crucial factor to study is the past performance of a horse.

So here are some few tips to ace the betting game and help you better on your odds:

  • Every racetrack has a race-to-race simulcast commentator on television so you must listen and see if there are useful tips to pick up to bet on.
  • In the jockey standings, the top ten riders win about 90% of the races run during the meeting. Favorite horses win around 33 percent of the time, despite low payoffs.
  • The morning line in the race is not who the racetrack oddsmaker likes. It’s good.

Figuring Out the Payouts

In order to understand how horse race betting payouts work, we first need to understand how it is calculated.

There are two factors determining payouts: stakes and odds. A “stake” is just how much of a horse race bet you are willing to invest. The term “odds” is the potential return that your bet, usually displayed as a fraction or decimal, can give you.

A wagering system called pari-mutuel wagering is where each player bets against other players. First, you need to subtract the “take” (usually between 14 percent – 20 percent depending on the US state) from the total pool to calculate your potential payout. Subtract then the wager that you put on your horse. The rest of the money will be paid out to all the players with winning tickets. The odds are what percentage each horse receives of the total pool.

In particular, there is an approximate equation where you can figure out how much is your payout. If you hit your win bet, divide the odds number by the denominator, multiply that number by the bet amount, and then add the bet amount.


Luck is not only the key to win the betting game; there’s also a strategy and tactics to take your sails on the wind of luck; just take heed on those tips above and you could win, then think about disadvantages, so you abide from it.

If you’re a bit overwhelmed by the sheer amount of betting options, you can take heart by not having to play them all.

Betting at sports just like horse derby is somewhat a point of thrill for the game to be more worth watching for. It is just for fun; just do it moderately, because doing it religiously could affect your way of life and at the end, it could harm you.

2020 Graded Stakes

American Quarter Horse Association, April 26, 2019 – The 2020 AQHA Graded Stakes have been approved and are now available at AQHA’s website.

Stakes grades are reviewed by the AQHA Graded Stakes Committee and ultimately approved by the AQHA Executive Committee. Approximately 2 percent of American Quarter Horse races run each year are graded stakes. Only 0.4 percent of all American Quarter Horse races run each year are Grade 1 status.

There is a total of 32 races that will have grades promoted in 2020, an increase of about 7 percent from 2019.

The year-over-year increase is due in large part to a yearlong, multifaceted overhaul to the Graded Stakes Committee process. The committee met on four occasions in 2017-18, with the objective of creating a more equitable method of assigning graded stakes. Reforms include broadened metrics to evaluate field quality, as well as divisional consideration given to filly and mare and distance stakes for 3-year-olds and up.

“The process for determining graded stakes has long been a topic of conversation amongst the racing community,” said AQHA Chief Racing Officer Janet VanBebber. “There was significant reform to the guidelines in 2000, 2004 and again in 2009. These modifications landed on a process of combining a point system, a three-year average and purse tiers as variables considered when determining a stakes race’s potential grade. While most felt the system did a good job in guiding the Graded Stakes Committee in making the final determination, there were specific instances where the criteria seemed to miss its mark.

“As a result of the in-depth meetings to discuss additional improvements, modifications were made to the system that involved an adjusted algorithm for quality points calculated per race. Before, only the first three finishers in a graded stakes race contributed to the points system, and with the revisions, all participants in a graded stakes contribute to the point value. Also, added consideration is now given to participants who compete in different regions and new criteria was determined for both filly and mare races and 870-yard races. Lastly, the purse values for each given tier were modified. The Graded Stakes Committee presented its modifications to the Racing Committee in November 2018 during the Racing Conference at Los Alamitos. All were in agreement that the new criteria were an improvement and better represented the racing industry today.”

Full guidelines for the graded stakes process are available at

One race will gain an open Grade 1 status in 2020 – the Junos Request Stakes for fillies and mares age 3 and up at Remington Park, which moves from a Grade 2 to a Grade 1 race.

The Governor’s Cup Futurity at Los Alamitos will move from a Restricted Grade 2 to a Restricted Grade 1.

Former Grade 3 races that will move up to Grade 2 races in 2020 include the Decketta Stakes, Heritage Place Derby, the Downs at Albuquerque Distance Challenge, James Isaac Hobbs Stakes, Las Damas Handicap, Los Alamitos Championship Challenge, PCQHRA Breeders’ Derby and Remington Distance Challenge.

Restricted Grade 3 races that will move up to Restricted Grade 2 races include the Garanones Futurity, Subasta Selecta Futurity, Governor’s Cup Derby, Mesilla Valley Speed Handicap, Mighty Deck Three Stakes, Oklahoma Horsemen’s Association Mystery Futurity and Remington Park Oklahoma-Bred Derby.

Gaining a new grade is the First Moonflash Maturity, which jumps from simply a restricted race following its first three runnings to a Restricted Grade 2 in 2020.

Also gaining a grade are the Canterbury Championship Challenge, Will Rogers Distance Challenge, and First Down Dash Handicap, which go from non-graded stakes to a Grade 3 designation.

Going from ungraded to Restricted Grade 3 are the Bitterroot Futurity, Black Gold 350 Futurity, Black Gold 440 Futurity, Boyd Morris Memorial Handicap, Denim N Diamonds Handicap, Easy Date Stakes, FL Lady Bug Stakes, Laico Bird Stakes, Mr Master Bug Handicap, New Mexico Cup 870 Championship, and Wild West Futurity.

There are also a few stakes that will have their grades lowered.

The Lineage Championship and New Mexico Breeders’ Championship will both move from Restricted Grade 3s to non-graded restricted races. The Lubbock Stakes will move from a Grade 3 to ungraded.

For more information and a list of the 2020 graded stakes, visit

American Quarter Horse Association
1600 Quarter Horse Drive
Amarillo, TX 79104

Why Horse Racing Is Such a Popular Sport to Bet On

If you are a fan of thoroughbred races, chances are you have been seeing the same spike of attendees in horse racing events. We often must wonder why this is. Is it because horse racing is so popular, do they have money literally riding on these horses, or is it a combination of both? What makes horse racing such a popular sport to bet on? You can try it here and see what all the fuss is about or you can read how we came to the conclusion that horse racing is a popular sport because it stands apart from the rest.


The outcome of the race is incredibly hard to predict and this is coming from experts. Horse racing isn’t predictable as there are many factors to take into consideration. The training of the horse is something no one can witness; how the horse has been trained, how often the horse trains, and the speed of the thoroughbred cannot be predicted. Because we are betting on some of the most amazing animals in the world, we don’t know what their current performance is. We can only look at previous races, if there are any, and try deducing which number, name and jockey will win.

The History of Horse Racing

Adding to the popularity of horse racing is the fact that the sport dates back to the 1800s and has most certainly collected appreciative spectators over the centuries. The history of horse racing tells a tale of strength, speed, and some of the most beautiful thoroughbreds in the world.

The Prize Money

Horse sports betting is one of the most lucrative betting industries in the world. Some prizes awards millions of dollars to the winning horse and in some cases there is even a whole ceremony at the end of the race.

An Elite Sport

The biggest horse racing events attract millions of spectators from around the world. There are even celebrities in attendance. The Royal Family attends the Grand National Horse Racing event which is held in Liverpool every year and is attended over a 3 day period. One of the biggest horse racing events is the Kentucky Derby; the race is a part of 3 major races. There are a number of races that have been set apart from the smaller races. The ruler of Dubai has recently created one of the biggest events in the horse racing world and offers one of the largest prize pots.

Betting on the Horses

You can either travel hundreds of thousands of miles to be in attendance to bet on the races or you can opt for the more modernized method of betting: this is using an online sports book to choose your odds ad bet on them. This has also factored into the popularity of horse racers as most online sports books offer this as a betting option. Make sure you get in on the action – get informed about horse racing tips and take part in the most popular sport in the world.