Officials of Breeders' Cup Limited and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced Monday, Dec. 3, that Arlington Park in suburban Chicago has been named the host site for the 2002 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships. The announcement was made at a press conference in Chicago's ESPN Zone restaurant.The 19th Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, consisting of eight races with purses and awards totaling $13 million, will be run next year on Saturday, October 26 and will be televised live by NBC Sports. "We are delighted to announce Arlington Park as our site for the 2002 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships," said D.G. Van Clief, Jr., president of Breeders' Cup Limited and vice chairman of the NTRA. "Arlington is an outstanding, world-class racing facility renowned for hosting top-flight international competition and providing its fans with an excellent presentation of Thoroughbred racing. We look forward to working with Arlington's management and staff under the direction of Dick Duchossois, and we salute the State of Illinois for its enthusiastic support of next year's Championships."
"It's important for horseracing to be represented in the country's third largest market with its premier event," said NTRA commissioner Tim Smith. "We're looking forward to discussions with the Chicagoland corporate community about the great sponsorship and media opportunities presented not just on Championships Day, but all year long through the global, multi- division Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships. Churchill Downs, Inc., and Arlington Park will be great partners in that process, just as they have been stalwart supporters of the Breeders' Cup since 1984, and the NTRA since 1998.""The announcement that the world's racing championship day, the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, is coming to the Chicago market and the state of Illinois is a proud moment in the history of Arlington Park and the Illinois racing industry," said Arlington Park Chairman Richard L. Duchossois. "It is the equivalent of racing's Super Bowl or World Series. Attracting the highest quality of international racing while showcasing the excitement of Thoroughbred racing have always been important goals for Arlington Park," added Duchossois. "The World Thoroughbred Championships will bring the world's best to Chicago and Illinois, while exposing our great city and state to a huge national and international audience. In addition to the large number of racing fans who will visit us and the significant local economic impact they will bring to the Chicagoland area, the live event will be televised nationally on NBC as well as to
international viewers around the world."