Fair Grounds Race Course

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Fair Grounds Race Course

The Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots is known as the home of the Louisiana Derby, but that’s not the only racing highlight of the year at the the New Orleans track. The 145th annual Thoroughbred Racing Season at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots is set to begin on Saturday, November 19, and it will feature 60 stakes races with nearly $7 million in purses available.

The opening weekend card of the season will be held over the course of two days, from November 19-20, and features four stakes races each worth $50,000 – The Mr. Sulu Overnight Stakes, the Happy Ticket Overnight Stakes, the Heitai Overnight Stakes, and the Si Cima Overnight stakes. All four of these stakes are Louisiana Champions Day prep races.

Next up on the schedule is the Thanksgiving Day meet, with the yearly highlight being the 92nd running of the $75,000 Thanksgiving Handicap for top sprinters.

The Fair Grounds Race Course will go on a brief hiatus following Thanksgiving and return on December 3rd with the $50,000 Battle of New Orleans Overnight Stakes, followed by the Magic City Classic on December 9. Then it’s all systems go on December 10 for the sixth annual Louisiana Champions Day card, which features 11 races worth a combined $1.1 million in purses. The main attraction of the Louisiana Champions Day card is the $150,000 LA Champions Day Classic.

The rest of the 2016 racing season at Fair Grounds meet will see it host the December 17 Santa Super Saturday card, the Tiffany Lass Overnight Stakes on December 26, and it will close out with a five-card day on December 31, which includes the LA Futurity (Boys) and LA Futurity (Girls).

That concludes the 2017 portion of Fair Grounds’ meet. It will return on January 21 with the Road to the Kentucky Derby Day.

Fair Grounds Race Course Information:

Main track (dirt): 1 mile, oval
Distance from last turn to finish line: 1,346 feet

Turf: Approx. 7 furlongs
Bets available may include: Win, Place, Show, Exacta, Trifecta, Superfecta, Daily Daily Double, Pick 3, Pick 4, PIck 5 and Black Gold 5.

Bet the Fair Grounds Racecourse horse racing online on TwinSpires and watch race replays for free on TwinSpiresTV!

 

2017 Live Racing at Fair Grounds

Fair Grounds Key Racing Dates

  • Louisiana Champions Day, 11 stakes for Louisiana-breds
  • Santa Super Saturday, four open stakes worth $300,000
  • Road to the Derby Kickoff Day, five stakes worth $625,000
  • Louisiana Derby Preview Day, five stakes worth $975,000
  • Louisiana Derby Day, seven stakes worth $2.51 million 

Graded Stakes

The Fair Grounds stakes schedule is highlighted by 10 stakes that were graded last season – five Grade II and five Grade III. The Grade II events are the Risen Star Stakes and Louisiana Derby for 3-year-olds, the Fair Grounds Oaks for 3-year-old fillies, the New Orleans Handicap for older horses and the Mervin H. Muniz Memorial Handicap for older turf horses.

The Grade III events are the Lecomte Stakes for 3-year-olds, the Rachel Alexandra Stakes for 3-year-old fillies, the Mineshaft Handicap for older horses, and both the Fair Grounds Handicap and the Colonel E.R. Bradley Handicap for older turf horses.

The North American Graded Stakes committee will meet in December to determine grades for 2014.

“We continue to hope that the esteemed committee will finally recognize that Fair Grounds deserves a Grade I race,” said Eric Halstrom, Vice President and General Manger for Racing. “The Louisiana Derby produced two of the top three finishers in the Kentucky Derby and the winner of the Belmont Stakes. Our three-race prep series overall featured five of the top six Kentucky Derby finishers plus the Preakness and Belmont winners. A nationally televised, million-dollar race that is now proven as the key final Triple Crown prep has probably earned Grade I status.”

Starlight Dates Announced

Fair Grounds also announced four Starlight Racing dates in addition to Opening Night. The popular social events feature live music, DJs, drink specials and live racing under the lights on select Friday nights. The 2013-2014 Starlight dates are Nov. 22, Dec. 20, Jan. 17, Feb. 7 and March 14.

           
           
2017-18 THOROUGHBRED RACING SEASON STAKES SCHEDULE
DATE PURSE STAKES RUNNING CONDITIONS DISTANCE / SURFACE
Nov 18 50,000 MR. SULU OVERNIGHT STAKES   3YO/UP 1 MILE* (T)
Nov 18 50,000 HAPPY TICKET OVERNIGHT STAKES   3YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 6 FURLONGS
Nov 18 50,000 HEITAI OVERNIGHT STAKES   3YO/UP 6 FURLONGS
Nov 18 50,000 SI CIMA OVERNIGHT STAKES   3YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 1 MILE* (T)
Nov 23 75,000 THANKSGIVING HANDICAP 93rd 3YO/UP 6 FURLONGS
Dec 2 50,000 RICHARD R. SCHERER MEMORIAL OVERNIGHT STAKES   3YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 5 1/2 FURLONGS* (T)
Dec 8 51,000 THE MAGIC CITY CLASSIC 7th 3YO/UP ONE MILE
Dec 9   LOUISIANA CHAMPIONS DAY (LA)      
  50,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY HANDICAP STAKES 27th 3YO/UP 1 MILE* (T)
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY QH JUVENILE STAKES - GRADE II 27th 2YO 350 YARDS
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY QH DERBY - GRADE III 27th 3YO 400 YARDS
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY QH CLASSIC - GRADE II 27th 4YO/UP 440 YARDS
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY LADIES TURF 27th 3YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 1 1/16 MILES* (T)
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY JUVENILE 27th 2YO 6 FURLONGS
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY SPRINT 27th 3YO/UP 6 FURLONGS
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY LADIES SPRINT 12th 3YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 6 FURLONGS
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY LASSIE 27th 2YO FILLILES 6 FURLONGS
  150,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY CLASSIC 27th 3YO/UP 1 1/8 MILES
  100,000 LA CHAMPIONS DAY TURF 27th 3YO/UP 1 1/16 MILES* (T)
Dec 16   SANTA SUPER SATURDAY      
  75,000 TENACIOUS STAKES 53rd 3YO/UP 1 MILE 70 YARDS
  75,000 BONAPAW 12th 3YO/UP 5 1/2 FURLONGS* (T)
  75,000 BLUSHING KD 10th 3YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 1 1/16 MILES* (T)
  75,000 BUDDY DILIBERTO 12th 3YO/UP 1 1/16 MILES* (T)
  50,000 LETELLIER OVERNIGHT STAKES 58th 2YO FILLILES 6 FURLONGS
  50,000 SUGAR BOWL OVERNIGHT STAKES 68th 2YO 6 FURLONGS
Dec 26 50,000 TIFFANY LASS OVERNIGHT STAKES 53rd 3YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 1 MILE 70 YARDS
Dec 30 75,000 WOODCHOPPER 33rd 3YO 1 MILE* (T)
  75,000 PAGO HOP 34th 3YO FILLILES 1 MILE* (T)
Dec 31 100,000 LA FUTURITY (BOYS) (LA) 55th 2YO COLTS & GELDING 6 FURLONGS
  100,000 LA FUTURITY (GIRLS) (LA) 51st 2YO FILLILES 6 FURLONGS
Jan 6 50,000 PAN ZARETA OVERNIGHT STAKES 53rd 4YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 5 1/2 FURLONGS* (T)
Jan 13   ROAD TO THE DERBY KICKOFF DAY      
  200,000 LECOMTE STAKES - GRADE III 74th 3YO 1 MILE 70 YARDS
  150,000 SILVERBULLETDAY 26th 3YO FILLIES 1 MILE 70 YARDS
  75,000 DUNCAN F. KENNER STAKES 65th 4YO/UP 6 FURLONGS
  75,000 LOUISIANA STAKES 72nd 4YO/UP 1 1/16 MILES
  125,000 COL E.R. BRADLEY HANDICAP - GRADE III 32nd 4YO/UP 1 1/16 MILES* (T)
  75,000 MARIE G. KRANTZ MEMORIAL STAKES 23rd 4YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 1 1/16 MILES* (T)
Feb 13 75,000 MARDI GRAS STAKES 74th 4YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 5 1/2 FURLONGS* (T)
Feb 17   LOUISIANA DERBY PREVIEW DAY      
  150,000 MINESHAFT HANDICAP - GRADE III 33rd 4YO/UP 1 1/16 MILES
  400,000 RISEN STAR STAKES - GRADE II 46th 3YO 1 1/16 MILES
  200,000 RACHEL ALEXANDRA STAKES - GRADE II 38th 3YO FILLILES 1 1/16 MILES
  150,000 FAIR GROUNDS HANDICAP - GRADE III 32nd 4YO/UP 1 1/8 MILES* (T)
  50,000 COLONEL POWER OVERNIGHT STAKES 28th 4YO/UP 5 1/2 FURLONGS* (T)
  75,000 DAISY DEVINE STAKES 50th 4YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 1 1/16 MILES* (T)
Mar 3 50,000 BLACK GOLD OVERNIGHT STAKES 60th 3YO 1 MILE* (T)
Mar 3 60,000 DIXIE POKER ACE (LA) 38th 4YO/UP 1 MILE* (T)
Mar 10 50,000 ALLEN LACOMBE OVERNIGHT STAKES 11th 3YO FILLILES 1 MILE* (T)
Mar 10 50,000 NELSON J. MENARD MEMORIAL OVERNIGHT STAKES 3rd 4YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 5 1/2 FURLONGS* (T)
Mar 17 60,000 RED CAMILIA (LA) 42nd 4YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 1 MILE* (T)
Mar 24   LOUISIANA DERBY DAY      
  50,000 NEW ORLEANS LADIES OVERNIGHT STAKES 4th 4YO/UP FILLIES & MARES 1 1/16 MILES* (T)
  60,000 COSTA RISING (LA) 8th 4YO/UP 5 1/2 FURLONGS* (T)
  300,000 MUNIZ MEMORIAL HANDICAP - GRADE II 26th 4YO/UP 1 1/8 MILES* (T)
  400,000 NEW ORLEANS HANDICAP - GRADE II 93rd 4YO/UP 1 1/8 MILES
  400,000 FAIR GROUNDS OAKS - GRADE II 51st 3YO FILLILES 1 1/16 MILES
  1,000,000 LOUISIANA DERBY - GRADE II 105th 3YO 1 1/8 MILES
Mar 31 60,000 STAR GUITAR (LA) 9th 4YO/UP 1 1/16 MILES
  75,000 CRESCENT CITY DERBY (LA) 46th 3YO 1 1/16 MILES
  75,000 CRESCENT CITY OAKS (LA) 13th 3YO FILLIES 1 MILE 70 YARDS
    TOTAL      
TOTAL 6,556,000        

 

 

Fair Grounds Wagering

Available wagers for Fair Grounds may include Win, Place, Show, Exacta, Trifecta, Superfecta, Daily Daily Double, Pick 3, Pick 4, PIck 5 and Black Gold 5.

The Black Gold 5 requires a bettor to hold the lone successful ticket with the winners of five consecutive races. On cards when there is no single-ticket winner, half of the pool is paid as consolation to tickets with the most correct and half of the pool goes to a carryover. The Black Gold 5 carries a $.50 minimum and is comprised of the final five races daily.

The Black Gold 5 moniker suggests the bonanza of an oil strike (“Black Gold” is slang for oil), while simultaneously paying tribute to the legendary 1924 Louisiana Derby and Kentucky Derby winner buried in the Fair Grounds infield.

To view the complete Black Gold 5 rules, click here.

Wagering minimums:

  • $1 Win, Place, Show, Exacta and Daily Double
  • $0.50 Trifecta, Pick 3, Pick 4, Pick 5 (Black Gold 5) and Hi-5
  • $0.10 Superfecta

 

Opening Weekend

Opening Night, presented for the third time by East Jefferson General Hospital, will feature a special nine-race Exotic Starlight Racing card that will include two ostrich races and a camel race. First post is 3 p.m. The Starlight Racing series is the place to ‘see and be seen’ while enjoying live racing, great bands, mouth-watering dishes from local restaurants, Tujague’s, Ho Shun and The Munch Factory, and special drink selections.

“From our Opening Night Exotic Starlight Racing through the 101st running of the Grade II Louisiana Derby, we anticipate another successful meet at the Fair Grounds with top-quality racing and marquee social events in New Orleans,” said Fair Grounds President Tim Bryant.

Miller Lite and Blue Moon are celebrating their fifth season as the Official Presenting Partner of the Starlight Racing Series. Fair Grounds is proud to welcome Absolut and Jameson to the Starlight Racing family as the Official Starlight Spirits Partners for the next two years. Not only will guests enjoy the best in beer offerings from the MillerCoors brand, but they will also enjoy the full-flavored spirits from the Pernod-Ricard portfolio (parent company for Absolut & Jameson). Local Production Company, Royal Productions, also new this year, will ensure the Miller Time Beer Garden tent is hopping with vibrant lights and wild beats as the Official Audio Visual Provider of the Series for the next three years.  For the fifth consecutive season, Where Y’at will be an official media partner of Starlight ensuring local revelers are in the know and ready to party at the track.

The first stakes race of the meet – the sixth running of the $60,000 Mr. Sulu Stakes – will also be contested opening weekend on Saturday, November 23. First post is 1 p.m.

Thanksgiving Day

Traditionally set on the racing calendar to begin the meet, Thanksgiving Day (November 28) will once again see fans treated to a festive holiday atmosphere and top-quality racing with a ten-race card highlighted by the 88th running of the $100,000 Thanksgiving Handicap, a six-furlong test for top sprinters.

Louisiana Derby

Louisiana Derby Preview Day Presented by Lamarque Ford, The Official Automotive Partner of Fair Grounds, consists of five stakes worth $975,000 on February 22. The 41st running of the Grade II Risen Star Stakes Presented by Lamarque Ford is the second of three preps for Kentucky Derby hopefuls and the final local prep for the Grade II Louisiana Derby. The Grade III Rachel Alexandra Stakes, the Grade III Mineshaft Handicap, and the Grade III Fair Grounds Handicap will also be run on Louisiana Derby Preview Day.

Louisiana Derby Day on closing weekend brings the curtain down on the season’s stakes program with seven stakes events worth a combined $2.51 million. Fair Grounds’ marquee event, the Grade II $1 million Louisiana Derby will offer hopeful three-year-olds a final local chance to qualify for the Kentucky Derby. The Grade II $500,000 Fair Grounds Oaks, a race that has remarkably produced five of the last nine Kentucky Oaks winners, will also be presented on Louisiana Derby day, along with the Grade II New Orleans Handicap and the Grade II Mervin H. Muniz, Jr. Memorial Handicap.

Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks Points Systems

A points-based qualifying system for the Kentucky Derby was put into effect for 2013 and renewed for the 2014 Derby. It includes all three major Louisiana prep races: the Grade II Louisiana Derby was installed as one of the major, final preps given the highest consideration in determining Kentucky Derby eligibility. Under the system, 3-year-old Thoroughbreds earn their way to the Kentucky Derby by earning points in select stakes. The $1 million Louisiana Derby (GII), the signature event at Fair Grounds, is one of only seven races that will offer the maximum 170 points (100 for first, 40 for second, 20 for third, 10 for fourth).

Thirty-four stakes are included in the “Road to the Kentucky Derby” point system.

The first two stakes in Fair Grounds’ three-race graded stakes series for 3-year-olds also carry significant value. The Grade II Risen Star will offer 85 points (50-20-10-5) and the Grade III Lecomte will be worth a total of 17 points (10-4-2-1).

A similar point system is used for 3-year-old fillies aspiring to the $1 million Kentucky Oaks. All three of Fair Grounds’ major route stakes for 3-year-old fillies are included in the “Road to the Kentucky Oaks.” The Grade II Fair Grounds Oaks will be one of the premier 170-point (100-40-20-10) stakes, the Grade III Rachel Alexandra is worth 85 points (50-20-10-5) and the Silverbulletday is worth 17 points (10-4-2-1).

About Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots

Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, the nation’s third-oldest racetrack, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, Fair Grounds is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN); it also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and 11 off-track betting parlors throughout southeast Louisiana. The sixth Summer Quarter Horse Meet runs Aug. 16 to Sept. 7. The 142nd Thoroughbred Racing Season – highlighted by the 101st running of the $1 million Louisiana Derby and the accompanying Infield Festival – will run from November 2013 through March 2014. More information can be found online at www.FairGroundsRaceCourse.com.