Sixteen stakes worth $3.425 million, anchored by the Toyota Blue
Grass Stakes (gr. I) and the Central Bank Ashland Stakes (gr. I), are
scheduled for Keeneland’s 2011 spring race meet, the official start of
the Lexington track’s 75th anniversary celebration.
Keeneland will once again offer average daily purses of more than
$600,000 for the 15-day meet, to be held April 8-29, ranking it as one
of North America’s richest racing programs. Fifteen of the 16 stakes are
graded, while half will be contested on the turf. At least one stakes
will be held on 11 of the 15 race days, which features racing Wednesday
through Sunday except Easter Sunday, April 24.
Headlining the meet will be four grade I events – the Toyota Blue
Grass and Central Bank Ashland, premier preps for the Kentucky Derby
Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) and the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I),
respectively; the Vinery Madison for older fillies and mares at seven
furlongs on the main track, and the Maker’s Mark Mile for older horses
on the turf.
“The racing world converges on Keeneland in the spring because they
know this is where the best jockeys, trainers, and horses will be, and
they want to compete at the highest level,” said director of racing W.B.