Horse Racing

Churchill Downs tweaks the Derby scoring system

Churchill Downs announced on September 16 that there will be some minor revisions to the Road to Kentucky Derby series. Points will now be awarded to the top five finishers in qualifying races, and the importance of the TVG Breeders’ Juvenile Trophy presented by the Post-Taming Care Alliance (G1) and the The race that traditionally takes place at the end of January has been increased.

The Road to the Kentucky Derby, a select series of races that award sliding scales to the highest finishers, has determined the priority for its 20-horse Kentucky Derby as presented by Woodford Reserve (G1). ) since 2013. The 1 1/4 mile classic for 3-year-old hybrids will be held at the historic Louisville, Ky., racetrack for the 149th consecutive year on May 6, 2023.

Hall of Fame Coach Bob Baffert’s horses are still ineligible for points. in 2023 Kentucky Derby or 2023 Kentucky Oaks or any coach employed, supervised, or mentored directly or indirectly by a suspended coach. “

As a private property owner, Churchill Downs Inc. banned Baffert from competing at its tracks until mid-2023, the action taken by the track operator after Medina Spirit tested positive for the presence of betamethasone on banned race day after crossing the first rope in the 2021 Kentucky Derby. Medina Spirit was eventually disqualified by race managers, having been promoted. Mandaloun First.

An expansion of the points awarded in qualifying races was made to develop “Derby Fever” for more horses and ownership groups, potentially increasing the pitch size in the pre-Derby series races.

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Most races preparing for the Kentucky Derby season will now score on a 10-4-3-2-1 sliding scale. Previously, those laps were worth 10-4-2-1 since the first qualifying scoring system was established for the 2013 Kentucky Derby.

Points are awarded in the Breeders ‘Cup Juvenile, to be held this year in Keeneland on November 4, will be increased from 20-8-4-2 to 30-12-9-6-3 to distinguish what was once a high quality tier 1 race from other races in the standard season bag.

In addition, select prep races that traditionally serve as the foundation for the Kentucky Derby Series Championship have been elevated from 10-4-2-1 to 20-8-6-4-2 in an effort to raise the importance and awareness of these races and encourage capable horses to start their 3-year-old campaigns earlier in the season.

White Abarrio Wins Holy Bull Stakes 2022 at Gulfstream Park
Photo: Coglianese Photos

White Abarrio wins Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park

The advanced races for the prep season are Lecomte Stakes (G3, Fair Grounds & Slots), Southwest Joint Stock Company (G3, Oaklawn Park), Withers shares (G3, queduct race track | track record “> AQueduct race track), Holy Bull shares (G3, Gulfstream Park), Robert B. Lewis Stakes (G3, Santa Anita . Park), Sam F. Davis Stakes (G3, Tampa Bay Downs), and John Battaglia Memorial Stakes (Lawn Park).

Mike Ziegler said: “We believe these modifications adhere to and amplify our goal of putting together the best group of 3-year-olds at the starting gate for a classic 1 1/4 race. miles on the first Saturday in May,” said Mike Ziegler, vice president and general manager at Churchill Downs.

This is the 11th year in a row Churchill Downs has used a scoring system to determine participants for his famous Kentucky Derby. At least 20 horses have participated in “Run for the Roses” in 21 of the past 24 years.

The Road to the Kentucky Derby kicks off Saturday in the home of America’s greatest race as Churchill Downs races through the 41st race of the $300,000 Iroquois Stakes (G3) for 2-year-olds in the distance. 1/16 miles in opening weekend September 14-day Meetup.

In addition to the main 37-race Road to Kentucky Derby, there are two separate series, each with a spot for a potential horse from Europe and Japan.

The same changes made to the Road to the Kentucky Derby were made to the 32-race Road to the Kentucky Oaks series, awarding points to the fillings to qualify for the Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) in 1/8 mile on May 5, 2023.

This press release has been edited and styled by the BloodHorse Staff.

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