Turfway Park kicks off its 46th winter/spring live meet with a nine-race card on New Year's Day.
As it has been since 1972, the highlight of the winter/spring meet is the Spiral Stakes, now under title sponsorship of Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati. Scheduled for March 22 and run at 1 1/8 miles, the Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Spiral Stakes (gr. III) is a designated "Road to the Kentucky Derby" race, offering a total of 85 points to 3-year-olds hoping to make the 20-horse Derby field.
The Bourbonette Oaks (gr. III) at one mile for 3-year-old fillies, also runs March 22 and is a designated points race for the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).
Five other races complete the stakes schedule for the winter/spring meet: Jan. 4, Wintergreen Stakes, fillies and mares 4 years old and up, one mile; Jan. 18, Forego Stakes, 4-year-olds, 6 1/2 furlongs; Feb. 1, 96ROCK Stakes, 3-year-olds, 6 1/2 furlongs; Feb. 15, Cincinnati Trophy Stakes, 3-year-old fillies, 6 1/2 furlongs; Mar. 1, John A. Battaglia Memorial Stakes, 3-year-olds, 1 1/16 miles.
The 96ROCK Stakes, shortened from a mile to sprint distance, and the Battaglia Memorial are local prep races for the Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Spiral Stakes.