Live Racing Returns to Belmont Park Friday

Belmont Park Race Track

The spring stakes action at Belmont Park starts on April 28. (Photo credit: Bigstock.com)

Featuring the third annual Belmont Stakes Racing Festival, itself anchored by the 149th renewal of the Grade 1, $1.5 million Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 10, live thoroughbred racing returns to Belmont Park on Friday, April 28 for its 54-day spring/summer meet.

The three-day opening weekend is highlighted by the $100,000 Affirmed Success for New York-bred sprinters on Friday followed by a pair of turf stakes in the $150,000 Elusive Quality on Saturday, April 29, and the $150,000 License Fee on Sunday, April 30. First post time is 1:30 p.m. on Friday and admission gates will open at 11:30 a.m. General admission is $5 and general parking is free.

Highlighted by the 149th running of the Grade 1, $1.5 million Belmont Stakes, the oldest and most challenging leg of horse racing’s vaunted “Triple Crown,” the three-day Belmont Stakes Racing Festival will begin on Thursday, June 8 and conclude on Saturday, June 10 with 18 stakes races contested over the course of the Festival.

With the Belmont Stakes Draw scheduled for Wednesday, June 7 at Rockefeller Center in Manhattan, Thursday, June 8, will open the 2017 Belmont Stakes Racing Festival with live-racing and “Community Day” at Belmont Park. The racing card will feature a trio of stakes with the Grade 3, $250,000 Intercontinental for filly and mare turf sprinters, the Grade 3, $200,000 Wonder Again for sophomore fillies on the grass, and the $150,00 Astoria for 2-year-old fillies.

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On Friday, June 9, Day 2 of the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival will feature five stakes worth more than $1.5 million, including the Grade 2, $500,000 New York for fillies and mares on the turf, the Grade 3, $400,000 Belmont Gold Cup Invitational for long-distance turf runners, and the Grade 2, $250,000 True North for older sprinters.

A special post-race concert by Mike DelGuidice & Big Shot will close out the day by celebrating the music of Billy Joel. Taste NY vendors as well as the popular food truck village will be on-site offering fans a variety of food and beverage options for purchase.

Friday, June 9 will also mark the start of the Belmont Stakes Challenge, a two-day live-money handicapping contest with a $10,000 buy-in and a guaranteed prize pool of $110,000. In addition to prize money, entrants will compete for one seat to the 2018 Belmont Stakes Challenge, four seats to the National Handicapping Championship and two seats to the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge.

Online registration is open through Wednesday, June 7. For full contest rules and additional information please visit belmontstakeschallenge.com.

Belmont Stakes Day, June 10, will be comprised of five Grade 1 contests supporting the final and most elusive jewel of the Triple Crown: the $1.2 million Metropolitan Handicap (“Met Mile”) for 3-year-olds and up, the $1 million Woodford Reserve Manhattan for older horses on the grass and the $700,000 Longines Just a Game for the turf female division, as well as the $750,000 Ogden Phipps for fillies and mares and the $700,000 Acorn for sophomore fillies.

Tickets for the 2017 Belmont Stakes Racing festival are selling fast and fans should act now to lock in discounted rates. General admission tickets are just $15 through April 30 and limited inventory remains for premium hospitality areas. Please visit belmontstakes.com for additional information.

As New York’s Triple Crown headquarters, Belmont Park will host a full simulcast of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 6, complemented by live racing and a trio of graded stakes: the Grade 2, $200,000 Sheepshead Bay, the Grade 3, $150,000 Fort Marcy, both on the turf, and the Grade 3, $200,000 Westchester, the traditional prep for the Met Mile on Belmont Stakes Day.

 

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