LOUISVILLE, Kentucky. Churchill Downs changed the paths to the Kentucky Derby and the Oaks by awarding points to the top five finishers in qualifying races and increasing the value of Junior Breeders’ Cup competition and late prep seasons.
Most preparatory Derby races during the 3-year-old qualifying series will award points on a 10-4-3-2-1 sliding scale after using the 10-4-2-1 system from 2013. a run during the season-ending championships on November 4 at Keenland in Lexington, Kentucky will increase the score from 20-8-4-2 to 30-12-9-6-3 to differentiate the Tier I competition from others during the prep season. .
Some preparatory races for the 20-horse Derby course are scoring up from 10-4-2-1 on the scale to 20-8-6-4-2 to increase their importance and motivate applicants to start their three-year campaigns earlier. in the season, circuit officials said in a press release.
“We believe these changes are in line with and reinforce our goal of bringing the best group of 3-year-olds to the starting gate for the classic 1-mile race on the first Saturday in May,” Churchill Downs Vice President. said general manager Mike Ziegler.
The 149th Kentucky Derby & Oaks for Fillies will be held May 5-6, 2023. Derby qualifying season kicks off with Saturday’s $300,000 Grade III Mohawk draw for 2-year-olds at Churchill Downs.
Point changes apply to Oaks Qualifiers.
Preparations for the Elevated Derby include Lecomte at Fair Grounds in Louisiana; Southwest at Oaklon Park in Arkansas; Withers at the New York Aqueduct; Holy Bull in Florida’s Gulfstream Park; Robert B. Lewis in Santa Anita, California; Sam F. Davis at Tampa Bay Downs; and the John Battaglia Memorial in Turfway Park in Kentucky.
DEL MAR, California. Cave Rock won the $302,000 Del Mar Futurity race by 5 1/4 lengths, giving Hall of Famer coach Bob Baffert his record 16th Tier 1 race win in which he finished 1-2.
Cave Rock, ridden by Juan Hernandez, ran seven furlongs with a record 1:20.99 stakes time on closing day at the seaside track north of San Diego. He lowered the old mark of 1:21.29 set by Declan’s Moon in 2004.
Baffert tied Phil D’Amato for the title with 19 wins each at the 31-day summer meeting. It was Baffert’s eighth Del Mar title, but his first since 2003.
Hernandez won the jockey title.
Havnameltdown, who was also coached by Baffert, finished second in the 2-year-old race. Skinner was third by another 4 1/4 lengths.
First and second place went to longtime Baffert clients Mike Pegram, Carl Watson and Paul Weightman.
Cave Rock paid $2.80 to win as the 2/5 favorite. He earned $180,000 for the win.
BALTIMORE — A horse bred by Queen Elizabeth II won the Pimlico race on Saturday, two days after the death of the British monarch after seven decades on the throne.
West Newton, a 6-year-old gelding, moved up from sixth to win by half a length at the Baltimore track. He ran 1 1/8 miles on turf in 1:52.12 in the $36,000 race. The gelding was ridden by Forest Boys and coached by Richard Hendrix.
West Newton is eliminated from the Queen’s Prize mare, also bred by the late Monarch.
The victory cost $21,000 to owner Upland Flats Racing. West Newton paid $16.20 to win on a $2 bet.
Merin began his career in England. West Newton most recently competed in hurdles. It was his fourth win in 19 career starts.
The Queen died on Thursday at the age of 96.