This summer’s Grade 1 All American Derby is now projected to reach the $2,800,000 mark and set a new record as the all-time richest quarter horse race and continue as the richest race for three-year-olds of any breed in North America.
The Kentucky Derby for thoroughbreds offers a $2,000,000 purse and the other two legs of the Triple Crown, the Preakness and Belmont Stakes, offer $1,000,000 purses. The Hambletonian for three-year-old trotting standardbreds has a $1,000,000 guaranteed purse in 2013.
The 440-yard All American Derby would also exceed the purse of the Grade 1, $2,600,000 All American Futurity, the derby’s two-year-old counterpart. Both 440-yard races are contested over Labor Day weekend with the derby on Sunday, September 1 and the futurity on Monday, September 2.
Ruidoso Downs is the only track in North America with two $2,000,000-plus races on their annual stakes calendar.
Additionally, the Rainbow Derby, Rainbow Futurity, Ruidoso Derby and Ruidoso Futurity project to have all-time record purses.
Two of those Grade 1 classic races debut as $1,000,000 races on the stakes lineup this summer: the Rainbow Derby and the Rainbow Futurity. These races comprise the second leg of the futurity/derby series at Ruidoso Downs. The $1,000,000 (est.) Rainbow Derby at 440 yards will be held on July 20 followed by the $1,000,000 Rainbow Futurity at 400 yards on July 21.
The first leg of the triple crown series, the Grade 1, $800,000 (est.) Ruidoso Derby and the Grade 1, $750,000 Ruidoso Futurity, will each have new record purses when they are contested on June 8 and June 9, respectively.
If any horse wins the three Grade 1 futurities at Ruidoso Downs then that horse’s connections earn the $4,000,000 All American Triple Crown bonus. The bonus and winner’s share of each race would total more than $6,000,000.
The only remaining opportunity to supplement to these races is at time of entry. The time-of-entry supplemental fee for the All American Futurity and the All American Derby is $50,000. The Rainbow Derby fee is $40,000, the Rainbow Futurity fee $30,000, the Ruidoso Derby fee is $25,000 and the Ruidoso Futurity fee is $20,000.
One of the most exciting days every summer at Ruidoso Downs is the Zia Festival on July 28. The program is filled with 11 stakes races celebrating New Mexico-bred thoroughbreds and quarter horses. Topping the thoroughbred races are the runnings of the $200,000 (est.) Rio Grande Senor Futurity and the $200,000 (est.) Rio Grande Senorita Futurity. The richest quarter horse race will be the Restricted-Grade 1, $350,000 (est.) Zia Futurity.
The Ruidoso Downs summer season begins on Friday, May 24 with the daylong trials to the Grade 1, $750,000 Ruidoso Futurity and concludes on Labor Day with the All American Futurity.
Ruidoso Downs racing runs on a Friday through Monday schedule with the addition to two Thursday programs: July 4 and August 15 (All American Futurity trials). There will be no Monday racing on the Monday following the Thursday programs.
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