Wednesday, July 17—
The 76th season of horse racing at the Del Mar Racetrack got under way today, with jockey Joel Rosario and trainer Peter Miller sweeping the first two races.
Rosario rode Casa de Cambio to victory in the first race and Keep Movin’ in the second.
The one-mile, $100,000 Oceanside Stakes was set to be the ninth race of the day.
The highlight of the 37-day meet is the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic on Aug. 25.
Overall, nearly $7.8 million is available in stakes races. Five stakes races will serve as preludes to the Breeder’s Cup, horse racing’s annual fall bonanza, which will take place this year at Santa Anita in Arcadia, near Los Angeles.
“Del Mar is delighted to again be hosting important Breeders’ Cup Challenge races,” said Tom Robbins, the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club’s executive vice president for racing and racing secretary. “These five prestigious races are only made more valuable by their additional monetary encouragement for horsemen to take part in racing’s championship events”
According to published reports, Del Mar Thoroughbred Club officials have pitched the idea of hosting the Breeder’s Cup, possibly as soon as next year.
The California Horse Racing Board has tentatively approved dates for fall racing meets in Del Mar in 2014 and 2015, according to the reports.
Opening day festivities included the 19th “One and Only Truly Fabulous Hats Contest” in the Plaza de Mexico, with a panel of celebrity judges rating on style and creativity. Categories included Best Racing Theme, Funniest or Most Outrageous, Most Glamorous, Best Flowers and Best Fascinator, which is a type of headpiece or hair accessory.
The grand prize was two American Airlines round-trip ticket vouchers for use anywhere in the continental U.S. that the airline flies, plus a $500 gift basket from Studio Savvy. Category winners were to receive $300, with $200 for second place and $100 for third place.
The Friday concert series will continue this year, beginning with the B- 52s this week.
For the most part, racing will take place Wednesday through Sunday, with first post at 2 p.m. The exceptions are:
• Fridays, when first post is 4 p.m.;
• Pacific Classic day, when first post is 1 p.m.; and
• Labor Day, in which races will take place on a Monday.
The season closes on Sept. 4.