(Charles Town, WV) – Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races has released its stakes schedule for 2012 following approval granted by the West Virginia Racing Commission. Using a similar structure as the past three years, Charles Town will employ a quartet of themed event days between April and October, starting with the Charles Town Classic (G2) and culminating with the 26th running of the West Virginia Breeders’ Classics. In total, 28 stakes are scheduled for 2012 worth $3,590,000 in purse money, excluding the Breeders’ Classics whose races and purses will be announced later in 2012.
Kicking off the stakes slate at Charles Town will be the fourth running of the $1,000,000 Charles Town Classic - the track’s first ever Grade 2 event. A Grade 3 for the first time in 2011, the 1 1/8 mile race for older horses was won by Duke of Mischief and drew the likes of Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) runner-up Game On Dude, Metropolitan Handicap (G1) and Whitney (G1) winner Tizway and multiple Grade 1 winner Acclamation.
“The Charles Town Classic was one of the best and most productive races in the handicap division this year,” said Director of Racing Operations Erich Zimny. “We’re already looking forward to the 2012 edition and putting on another great show for our fans.”
Providing support on the Charles Town Classic undercard will be a new race, the $250,000 Robert Hilton Memorial, for three-year-olds going 7 furlongs. The third race worth six-figures on Charles Town Classic day will be the $200,000 Sugar Maple for fillies and mares, also going 7 furlongs. The $200,000 purse on the Sugar Maple represents a $50,000 decrease from the level it had been contested at in its first three renditions.
The stakes lineup on April 14 is rounded out by the $50,000 Webb Snyder as well as a pair of West Virginia bred stakes each worth $50,000.
On June 30, Charles Town will hold the fifth installment of the Charles Town Sprint Festival, which will again be anchored by the Red Legend for three-year-olds going seven furlongs. With its purse of $400,000, the Red Legend continues to be the richest sprint for three-year-olds in the country.
The date for the 2012 Sprint Festival was moved back one week from its normal spot on the calendar; a move the track hopes could pay dividends.
“We thought the extra week might give us a shot at horses coming out of the Woody Stephens on Belmont day,” said Randy Wehrman, Racing Secretary at Charles Town. “It seemed like there was more crossover with that race than the Summit of Speed, so we moved it back.”
Next, the Charles Town Race for the Ribbon will make its return on September 22, with the $400,000 Charles Town Oaks, for three-year-old fillies going 7 furlongs, serving as the marquee race on the card. Much like its male counterpart, the Red Legend, the Charles Town Oaks will be the richest race of its kind in the country, as it’s the only three-year-old filly sprint to offer a purse of $400,000. Race for the Ribbon day will again include many of the same events as the first three editions where Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races raised nearly $50,000 for the West Virginia Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
While the West Virginia Breeders’ Classics races are tentatively scheduled for October 20, the full lineup of races for the event will be announced later in the year. However, a total of 16 West Virginia accredited stakes, totaling $800,000, are already scheduled for 2012. In addition to the two West Virginia accredited stakes run on each of the track’s first three event days, August will feature a West Virginia-bred stakes on each Saturday of the month. Another restricted stakes, the $100,000 Tri-State Futurity open to West Virginia, Virginia and Maryland breds, will be run on November 10.
2011 HOLLYWOOD CASINO AT CHARLES TOWN RACES STAKES SCHEDULE
April 14 $1,000,000 Charles Town Classic (G2), 4&up, 1 1/8 miles
April 14 $250,000 Robert Hilton Memorial, 3YO, 7 furlongs
April 14 $200,000 Sugar Maple, F&M 4&up, 7 furlongs
April 14 $50,000 Webb Snyder, 3&up, 4 1/2 furlongs
April 14 $50,000 Confucius Say S. (WV), 3&up, 7 furlongs
April 14 $50,000 Original Gold S. (WV), F&M 3&up, 7 furlongs
May 19 $50,000 It's Only Money S. (WV), 3&up, 4 1/2 furlongs
May 26 $50,000 It's Binn Too Long S. (WV), F 3YO, 4 1/2 furlongs
June 30 $400,000 Red Legend, 3YO, 7 furlongs
June 30 $100,000 Wild & Wonderful, 3&up, 7 furlongs
June 30 $75,000 Lady Charles Town, F 3YO, 6 1/2 furlongs
June 30 $70,000 Charles Town Dash, 3&up, 4 1/2 furlongs
June 30 $50,000 Coin Collector S. (WV), 3YO, 4 1/2 furlongs
June 30 $50,000 Fancy Buckles S. (WV), F&M 3&up, 4 1/2 furlongs
August 4 $50,000 Robert G. Leavitt S. (WV), 3YO, 7 furlongs
August 11 $50,000 Sadie Hawkins S. (WV), F&M 3&up, 7 furlongs
August 18 $50,000 Frank Gall Memorial (WV), 3&up, 7 furlongs
August 25 $50,000 Sylvia Bishop Memorial (WV), F 3YO, 7 furlongs
September 22 $400,000 Charles Town Oaks, F 3YO, 7 furlongs
September 22 $75,000 Miss Shenandoah, F 2YO, 4 1/2 furlongs
September 22 $70,000 Pink Ribbon, F&M 3&up, 7 furlongs
September 22 $50,000 Henry Mercer Memorial (WV), 2YO, 4 1/2 furlongs
September 22 $50,000 Rachel's Turn S. (WV), F 2YO, 4 1/2 furlongs
October 20 West Virginia Bredeers' Classics XXVI, Races TBD
November 10 $100,000 Tri-State Futurity (R), 2YO, 7 furlongs
November 10 $50,000 My Sister Pearl S. (WV), F&M 3&up, 1 1/8 miles
November 17 $50,000 A Huevo S. (WV), 3&up, 1 1/8 miles
December 1 $50,000 West Virginia Futurity (WV), 2YO, 7 furlongs
December 15 $50,000 Eleanor Casey Memorial (WV), F 2YO, 7 furlongs