Turfway Park's 48th winter/spring Thoroughbred race meet opens Jan. 1, with eight stakes races highlighting the 46-day schedule. The meet runs through April 3 and includes the Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Spiral Stakes (gr. III), a prep race for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).
"We are going into 2016 with full fields and great entertainment every Friday and Saturday night." said Turfway general manager Chip Bach. "Admission is free, our facility is heated, and our drink prices can't be beat. It all leads up to our Kentucky Derby prep race, the Spiral Stakes."
The Rushaway Stakes returns to the winter/spring schedule after a two-year hiatus, joining the Spiral and the Bourbonette Oaks (gr. III) on the Northern Kentucky track's premier day of racing, set for April 2.
The April 2 date puts the Spiral Stakes, a designated qualifying points race for the Kentucky Derby and the Bourbonette Oaks (gr. III)—a designated qualifier for the Longines Kentucky Oaks (gr. I)—five weeks out from the Derby this year instead of the usual six weeks. The complete stakes schedule is below.
• $50,000 Wintergreen Stakes, one mile for older fillies and mares, Jan. 2
• $50,000 Forego Stakes, 6 1/2 furlongs for 4-year-olds and up, Jan. 16
• $50,000 WEBN Stakes, 6 1/2 furlongs for 3-year-olds, Jan. 30. The WEBN Stakes is the first of two local preps for the Spiral.
• $50,000 Cincinnati Trophy Stakes, 6 1/2 furlongs for 3-year-old fillies, Feb. 13. The Cincinnati Trophy is a local prep for the Bourbonette Oaks.
• $100,000 John Battaglia Memorial Stakes (listed), the final local prep for the Spiral, 1 1/16 miles for 3-year-olds, Feb. 27.
• $100,000 Rushaway Stakes, 1 1/16 miles for 3-year-olds, April 2.
• $100,000 Bourbonette Oaks (gr. III), one mile for 3-year-old fillies, April 2.
• $550,000 Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Spiral Stakes (gr. III), 1 1/8 miles for 3-year-olds, April 2.
Turfway's winter/spring schedule picks up where the December holiday meet leaves off. Live racing continues in January every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 6:15 p.m. and every Sunday at 2:30 p.m. The track is closed Easter Sunday, March 27.
The winter/spring meet continues Turfway's popular Dollar Nights each Friday and Saturday, featuring local bands and $1 draft beer and hot dogs, with the exception of the April 2 Spiral day.
Admission is free every day except on Spiral day. Parking is free.