Having compromised on the number of racing dates, Pinnacle Entertainment and the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association have agreed on a contract for the 2011 meet at River Downs.
Continued declines in handle and the lowest purse structure in decades have led River Downs to cut the purses of its two premier stakes for 2-year-olds by 50%.
The addition of a Breeders' Cup turf event for 2-year-olds has led River Downs to move its $200,000 Miller Lite Cradle Stakes from the dirt to the turf in 2007.
Two-year-olds will be in the spotlight Labor Day weekend when River Downs presents its two top events: the $200,000 Miller Genuine Draft Cradle Stakes Sept. 3, and the $100,000 Bassinet Stakes Sept. 1. Along with $75,000 Governor's Buckeye Cup Sept. 2, the races make up the track's Cradle Stakes Weekend Festival.
The flurry of recent stakes sponsorships continued Thursday with the announcement that the $100,000 Bassinet Stakes for 2-year-old fillies at River Downs will be supported by Pepsi-Cola for at least three years. Last year's Bassinet was won by Caressing, who eventually was named champion 2-year-old filly of 2000.
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