Remsen Stakes

  • Location: Aqueduct Racetrack - Jamaica, NY
  • Inaugural Race: 1904
  • Distance: 1 & 1/8 miles (9 furlongs)
  • Track Type: Left-handed, Dirt
  • Age Qualifications: Two-year-olds
  • 2020 Purse: $250,000
  • 2020 Race Date: Saturday, December 5th

The Remsen Stakes is one of the earliest Road to the Kentucky prep-races in New York. Held each year early in their late fall and winter meet, winners of the contest are awarded 10-4-2-1 points.

2020 Remsen Stakes Entries and Results

Brooklyn Strong
Joel Rosario
Daniel Velazquez
Ten for Ten
Jose L. Ortiz
Claude R. McGaughey III
Known Agenda
John R. Velazquez
Todd A. Pletcher
Pickin' Time
Jose Lezcano
Kelly J. Breen
Manuel Franco
Jose Corrales

Exotic Payoffs:
  • $2 Exacta (3-5) Paid: $38.20
  • $2 Trifecta (3-5-2) Paid: $91.48
  • $2 Superfecta (3-5-2-1) Paid: $121.40

Watch the 2020 Remsen Stakes


The History of the Remsen Stakes

The Remsen Stakes (G2) is the last 2-year-old race in the New York Racing Association area that forms part of the Road to the Kentucky Derby series. The winner earns 10 points, the runner-up four, the third-place finisher two and the fourth-place finisher one.

Named after Colonel Joremus Remsen, who led the American Revolutionary Forces in the 1776 Battle of Long Island, the Remsen Stakes was initially a sprint race, but its relevance to the Kentucky Derby grew after World War II when its distance was increased to a mile. Currently it’s run at 1 1/8 miles on the first Saturday in December.

Initially held at Jamaica Racetrack, it became even more important to the Triple Crown picture once it moved to Aqueduct in 1959. Seven Remsen Stakes winners between then and 1994 went on to win Classics the following season, five of them becoming multiple Classic winners. They were Carry Back (Derby and Preakness), Northern Dancer (Derby and Preakness), Damascus (Preakness and Belmont), Pleasant Colony (Derby and Preakness), Pine Bluff (Preakness), Go For Gin (Derby), and Thunder Gulch (Derby and Belmont).

Since 1995, however, no Remsen winner has taken out a Classic – 2006 Derby runner-up Bluegrass Cat getting the closest – but several have become grade one winners, including Coronado’s Quest, Court Vision, To Honor and Serve, Overanalyze, and Honor Code.

With the advent of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, most of the best 2-year-olds miss the Remsen Stakes, meaning there are often relatively few runners with stakes experience. Greater experience will help find the winner, but talent and stamina are also key.

Road to the Kentucky Derby prep-race list