Oak Tree 2004: 29 Stakes, $4.5 Million in Purses

The Oak Tree Racing Association has announced a 29-event stakes schedule worth $4,575,000 in purses for the 26-day meeting that begins on Sept. 29.

The lineup at Santa Anita Park features 13 graded stakes races with three grade I events, seven grade IIs and three grade III races.

Nine stakes worth $2,500,000 will be offered the first two weekends of the five-week meet. The concentration of important races is done with an eye toward the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships on Oct. 30 at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, TX.

The $500,000 Yellow Ribbon Stakes (gr. IT) and the $500,000 Goodwood Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) anchor an Oct. 2 stakes triple-header that also includes the $200,000 Oak Leaf Stakes (gr. II).

The following day's card features three more important stakes: $250,000 Clement L. Hirsch Memorial Turf Championship (gr. IT), $250,000 Lady's Secret Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) and $200,000 Norfolk Stakes (gr. II).

On Oct. 9, older turf stars meet in the $250,000 Oak Tree Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IIT), and on Oct. 10, sprinters get their turn in the $250,000 Ancient Title Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. I).

California Cup Day is an annual highlight for fans, breeders and owners throughout the state. The 15th renewal is Oct. 16, and features 10 races exclusively for California breds with an aggregate $1,325,000 in purses. Virtually every division and distance is covered with the traditional centerpiece the $250,000 California Cup Classic.

The Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships simulcast Oct. 30 features the $100,000 Morvich Handicap (gr. IIIT) on the hillside turf course. Closing day Oct. 31 is headlined by the $150,000 Las Palmas Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares.