Building on the success of the first of three Racing Festival Days at Suffolk Downs this year, which saw a crowd in excess of 10,000 people, the track has created a new stakes race, the $75,000 Suffolk Downs Distaff Turf, for the next festival day Oct. 3, will reduce the takeout to 15% on all wagers, and the purses for the Massachusetts-bred stakes on the card will be raised from $50,000 to $75,000.
The reduction in takeout on the live card will go into effect for Oct. 3 and, if successful in stimulating handle, will stay in effect for the third festival day Oct. 31. The takeout rate has been lowered from 26% on all multiple bets, including exacta, trifecta, the 50-cent Pick 3 and Pick 4, the ten-cent superfecta, and $1 daily double. The reduction is from 19% on win, place, and show bets.
"We are encouraged by the support we received from horsemen and fans for our first racing festival on Sept. 5 and we're hoping to build on that," Suffolk chief operating officer Chip Tuttle said.
Fillies and mares 3 and older will have the opportunity to earn black type in the featured $75,000 Suffolk Downs Distaff Turf, to be run at 1 1/16 miles on the grass course.
With the Massachusetts-bred stakes and the allocation from the state's new Race Horse Development Fund for overnight purses, officials expect purses in excess of $600,000 for the Oct. 3 card. The card will also include two steeplechase races and three $75,000 Massachusetts-bred stakes.
As they were for the first of the three live racing days, base purses will be paid back to fifth place with an $800 "runner's reward" for horses finishing from sixth to last, plus a $200 trainer's bonus for every starter.