As expected, Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati will be the title sponsor of the 42nd running of the Spiral Stakes held at sister property Turfway Park March 23.
Track and casino officials announced the sponsorship Feb. 15 and provided details of the agreement, which Blood-Horse previously reported. The sponsorship will increase the race purse of the Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Spiral Stakes (gr. III) to $550,000, its highest payout in more than a decade.
"We are excited to have one of the country's premier entertainment brands sponsor our most important race," said Chip Bach, general manager of Turfway Park. "As Northern Kentuckians and Southwestern Ohioans will soon experience, Horseshoe is known for bringing a first-class experience to its customers, and we know that Horseshoe's involvement will elevate the Spiral Stakes experience for our race fans and horsemen as well."
In addition to the title race sponsorship, the casino will also host "Call to the Post" March 20 during a reception inside the new Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati VIP lounge. At the pre-race event, entries will be taken and post positions will be drawn. Mike Battaglia, NBC horse racing commentator and longtime Turfway Park announcer and oddsmaker, will analyze the field and set the morning line.
In addition, two sponsors will support the March 23 race card, with The Fathead Bourbonette Oaks and the Team Valor International Rushaway Stakes rounding out the action.
On race day, the Horseshoe Cincinnati VIP Tent will offer as many as 2,200 guests a buffet, open bar, live entertainment, shopping venues, and chances to win prizes. VIP individual race-day tickets are $175 and tables of 10 are available for $1,750.
"Horseshoe Cincinnati is pleased to support Turfway Park's long tradition of hosting the Spiral Stakes, one of the region's most exciting races leading to the Kentucky Derby," said Horseshoe Cincinnati general manager Kevin Kline. "It's exciting to have Fathead—a partner company to our Rock Ohio Caesars ownership team—expand their sports and entertainment reach by supporting their first Thoroughbred racing event."
The Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Spiral Stakes is one of 36 qualifying races for the 2013 Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I). The Spiral Stakes was established in 1972 and has produced several Triple Crown race winners, including Kentucky Derby winners Lil E. Tee (1992) and Animal Kingdom (2011).