Nine live racing telecasts that are part of the "The Jockey Club Tour on FOX" will be broadcast on FOX Sports 1 from early February through mid-September, the partners in the project announced Jan. 20.
The weekend series kicks off with the $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park Feb. 9, and concludes with the Ricoh Woodbine Mile (Can- IT) at Woodbine Sept. 14. The series is a partnership of The Jockey Club and FOX Sports Media Group; the multi-year agreement was announced in August 2013.
"FOX Sports is planning to take a fresh approach to horseracing coverage with a focus on the horses, jockeys, trainers, owners, and horseplayers that make the sport one of America's best pastimes," David Nathanson, general manager and chief operating officer of FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2, said in a release.
"As we have often stated, increasing the national television presence of Thoroughbred racing continues to be a key component of our fan retention and development efforts under the America's Best Racing banner," Jockey Club chairman Ogden Mills "Dinny" Phipps said. "This uniquely structured series will help casual fans follow the stars of our sport beyond the Triple Crown and into the summer and fall as many of them aim for the Breeders' Cup.
The series, based on the current list of races, will lean toward older horses competing on the turf. There will be one Triple Crown prep race—the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland—and one stakes for 2-year-olds at Saratoga Race Course.
FOX Sports 1 launched in August 2013. Officials have said it is available in about 90 million homes.
The schedule follows, with all times Eastern and all shows on FOX Sports 1. Officials said the goal is to have at least two stakes per telecast "pending final approval from all necessary organizations." Further details and the on-air talent will be released at a later date.
Sunday, Feb. 9 (5-6:30 p.m.)—Donn Handicap (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park
Saturday, March 29 (1-2:30 p.m.)—Dubai World Cup (UAE-I), Meydan Race Course
Saturday, April 12 (4:30-6 p.m.)—Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I), Keeneland
Sunday, May 11 (4:30-6 p.m.)—Man o'War Stakes (gr. IT), Belmont Park
Sunday, July 6 (5-6:30 p.m.)—United Nations Stakes (gr. IT), Monmouth Park
Sunday, July 20 (5:30-7:30 p.m.)—Eddie Read Stakes (gr. IT), Del Mar; and TVG Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I), Saratoga Race Course
Sunday, Aug. 10 (5-6:30 p.m.)—Saratoga Special Stakes (gr. II), Saratoga
Sunday, Aug. 17 (5-6:30 p.m.)—Sword Dancer Invitational Stakes (gr. IT)--Saratoga
Sunday, Sept. 14 (5-6:30 p.m.)—Ricoh Woodbine Mile (Can-IT), Woodbine
The agreement includes international and Spanish-language rights, including the ability to air races on FOX Deportes, which officials called the nation's leading Spanish-language sports network.