Canterbury Announces 2011 Stakes Schedule

The track's Sept. 4 Minnesota Festival of Champions will offer seven stakes.

Canterbury Park’s 2011 Thoroughbred stakes schedule features 28 races worth $1.215 million in purses, highlighted by the $60,000 Minnesota Oaks and Derby, which are slated for Aug. 13 at the Shakopee, Minn. track.

The 62-day race meet begins Friday, May 20, and concludes Monday, Sept. 5.

The 18th Minnesota Festival of Champions, a day dedicated to the Minnesota breeding industry, is Sept. 4 and consists of seven stakes offering purses of $345,000.

This season, Canterbury Park will host a new event, the July 31 Fillies Race for Hope, a breast cancer awareness fundraiser that will benefit Hope Chest. The local organization’s mission is to help under-served or financially distressed individuals and their families affected by breast cancer. The day will feature nine races for fillies and mares, including the Lady Canterbury, Hoist Her Flag, and Princess Elaine Stakes.

“Canterbury Park has been active in the community through the Canterbury Park Minnesota Fund,” said Canterbury president Randy Sampson in a release. “This year we wanted to find a way to include our fans and horsemen and make an impact in others’ lives.”

Absent from the calendar is the Claiming Crown. This is the third time in 12 years it has not been hosted by Canterbury. The event will be held at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots in New Orleans Dec. 3.

The Claiming Crown is scheduled to return to Canterbury in the summer of 2012. Stall applications will be available Feb. 21, the same day the first condition book will be online at the track's website.