American Pharoah begins historic run to the Triple Crown in last year’s Kentucky Derby, holding off Firing Line. Photo by Reed Palmer from churchilldowns.com
By John Asher/Darren Rogers
The Churchill Downs Spring Meet kicks off under the lights Saturday night and continues through the end of June. It includes the 142nd renewals the $2 million Kentucky Derby and $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks (GI) on the first weekend in May and a roster of 26 stakes events – 23 of which are graded races – highlighted by six Grade I races and total stakes purses of $8.25 million.
The racing program headlined by the Kentucky Derby, America’s greatest race, on Saturday,
It’s opening weekend at Belmont Park, Churchill Downs and Prairie Meadows as spring racing kicks into high gear this weekend.
Belmont Park begins with stakes races on its first three cards and Prairie Meadows serves up an overnight stakes on its first Saturday of 2016. Churchill Down’s offers the second running of the $100,000 William Walker, the feature on opening night.
There’s also the first ever, California Chrome Stakes at Los Alamitos and trainer Art Sherman even has a runner in it.
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