Overnight purses rise again at Oaklawn
Effective Saturday, Oaklawn is increasing overnight purses by as much as $3,000 and three stakes by $50,000. For the first time in its 112-year history, Oaklawn is approaching an average daily purse distribution of $500,000 thanks in part to good weather and full fields that have attracted large on-track crowds and strong support from simulcast players.
With this increase, the minimum allowance race is now worth $74,000, maiden allowances are now worth an unprecedented $70,000 and the minimum purse is $21,500. Additionally, the Honeybee (G3) on March 12 has been bumped from $150,000 to $200,000 and both the Razorback H. (G3) and Azeri (G2), which share the card with the $900,000 Rebel (G2) on March 19, have been increased from $300,000 to $350,000.
"From day one, Oaklawn has benefited from great weather and more importantly, the quality of our races has been tremendous with a lot of full fields," said Director of Racing David Longinotti. "Suddenbreakingnews capped an exciting first month of racing with his victory in the Southwest (G3) and we are really looking forward to the next two months, which traditionally features some of the best racing in the country."
The 2016 Oaklawn meet runs through April 16.
In related news, Fair Grounds has announced a purse increase effective for the final 14 days of this racing season. The increase comes as a result of better than expected pari-mutuel handle and an increase in video poker revenue throughout the meet.
Purses for the final 14 racing days will be increased by 10% per race.
“I am happy to announce this purse increase for the final 14 days of our 144th racing season,” said Fair Grounds Track President Tim Bryant. “Our horsemen and owners have once again come through to help us offer an attractive live racing product and our recent success in video poker operations is allowing us to raise our purses toward the end of another successful thoroughbred racing season.”
The purse increase will go into effect March 6.