The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) announced that its 2014 Belmont Stakes card on Saturday, June 7 will offer total purses of $8 million and feature 10 stakes races. In 2013, only one card, Breeders' Cup Saturday at Santa Anita Park, had purses totaling more than $8 million.
The 13-race Belmont Stakes Day card serves as the centerpiece of a new three-day "Belmont Stakes Festival" that will offer a wide array of special hospitality and entertainment options. The 10 Saturday stakes will be worth an aggregate $7.7 million. In 2013, Belmont Stakes Day included six stakes events worth $2.95 million.
“We've put together the finest day of racing in Belmont Stakes history,” said New York Racing Association CEO and President Chris Kay. “We want every serious and casual fan in the area to come out on June 7 and experience the excitement and fun of one of New York's truly signature sporting events.
“We wanted to announce a day to grab people’s attention,” Kay added. “It should be an unforgettable afternoon.”
Five traditional Belmont Stakes Day contests - the Grade 1, $1.5 million Belmont Stakes; the Grade 1, $1 million Manhattan; the Grade 1, $750,000 Longines Just a Game; the Grade 2, $500,000 Woody Stephens; and the $150,000 Easy Goer will be back as part of the 2014 event.
Five stakes that were not contested on Belmont Stakes Day in 2013 will also be part of the 2014 card. Topping the list is the Grade 1, $1.25 million Metropolitan Handicap. Known as "The Met Mile," the race for 3-year-olds and older at one mile on the main track is annually considered one of the most prestigious races run in North America.