Charles Town Races, which came back from the dead with the introduction on video lottery terminals in the late 1990s, will offer more than $1 million in purses this weekend in conjunction with the West Virginia Breeders Classics.
The eight-race, $775,000 series is scheduled for Oct. 12. The previous night, the Charles Town Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will offer three $50,000 stakes on a 10-race card with a purse no lower than $17,000. Overnight purses were bumped up for the "owners' night" of racing.
The weekend concludes with a regular afternoon program Oct. 13.
The West Virginia Breeders Classics was inaugurated in 1987, and since that time, purses have about tripled. The series was facilitated by former pro football star Sam Huff, a longtime Thoroughbred owner and native of West Virginia.
This year's $250,000 West Virginia Breeders Classic Stakes for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/8 miles lured a field of eight, including last year's winner, Confucius Say. Owned and bred by O'Sullivan Farms, Confucius Say, by Eastover Court, is a six-time stakes winner in his career for total earnings of $415,397.
George Yetsook is the trainer, and Larry Reynolds is named to ride. Confucius Say and four others in the field will carry 122 pounds as the highweights.
The co-featured Cavada Breeders Classic for fillies and mares, 3-year-olds and up at seven furlongs, lured a contentious field of 10, including last year's one-two finishers, Longfield Star and Siouxperhoney.
All the races in the series are for horses that are accredited West Virginia bred, sired, or raised. Post time for the first race is 7:15 p.m.