More than five months since Ghostzapper posted his electrifying win in the $4 million Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) last October, racing returns to Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie, Texas April 14, beginning a 67-day run through July 17.From nine to a dozen races will be carded daily each Wednesday through Sunday. The first live race on weeknights is 6:35 p.m. Weekend and holiday action will start at 1:35 p.m. CT, except for a special 5 p.m. post time on July 3.A total of 37 stakes races are scheduled totaling just over $4 million."We plan to capitalize on the success we had and the relationships we built during last year's Breeders' Cup," said vice president and general manager Jeff Greco. "With that in mind and a well-balanced and lucrative stakes schedule in place, we have the makings of an exciting 2005."The 14-week meeting features seven multi-stakes days and is once again highlighted by four major events: Texas Mile Day on April 30; Walmac Lone Star Derby Day on May 14; Lone Star Million Day on Memorial Day, May 30; and Dallas Turf Cup Day on June 18.The $300,000 Walmac Lone Star Derby (gr. III), a 1 1/16-mile affair for 3-year-olds, returns one week after the Kentucky Derby (gr. I). It was staged there in 2002 and '03, the year Dynever rolled to an impressive 1 ½-length win over a dozen rivals. Last year, it was won by Pollard's Vision when conducted the day before the Breeders' Cup.The seventh annual Lone Star Million will feature six lucrative stakes this year with purses totaling more than $1 million. The $150,000 Stonerside Stakes for 3-year-old fillies has been added to the Memorial Day program that already includes the $300,000 Lone Star Park Handicap (gr. III) and the $200,000 WinStar Distaff (gr. III).Four stakes will be held on Texas Mile Day, the first major event of the meeting. The last two winners of the $300,000 Texas Mile (gr. III) – a one-mile, two-turn test of speed and stamina – have gone on to finish second in the Breeders' Cup Sprint: Bluesthestandard (2003) and Kela (2004).
Late in the meet, Stars of Texas Day on Saturday, July 9, will feature 2-year-old divisions of the Texas Stallion Stakes, two of six stakes events that day exclusively for Texas-breds.A dozen of the stakes events are scheduled on turf, highlighted by the $200,000 Dallas Turf Cup, a 1 1/8-mile race for older horses.