03/02/2012 2:28PM

American Oaks among stakes getting boosts at Hollywood Park


Purses for seven stakes for 2- and 3-year-olds have been raised for the upcoming spring-summer meeting at Hollywood Park, the track announced on Friday.

The 50-day meeting runs from April 26 to July 15.

The Grade 1 American Oaks for 3-year-old fillies over 1 1/4 miles on turf on July 14 will be worth $400,000, an increase of $150,000 from the 2011 meeting. The American Oaks had its lowest purse in 2011, at $250,000, and was worth $750,000 from 2003 to 2008.

The 2-year-old program has been significantly enhanced, with two six-furlong stakes – the Landaluce Stakes for fillies and the Grade 3 Hollywood Juvenile Championship – raised $100,000, to $200,000. Preps for those races over 5 1/2 furlongs in June – the Cinderella Stakes for fillies and Willard Proctor Memorial Stakes – have been increased $30,000, to $100,000.

Track officials hope that higher purses for 2-year-olds will entice greater participation among owners and trainers.

Two stakes for 3-year-old California-breds on the California Gold Rush program on April 28 have been boosted. The Snow Chief Stakes over 1 1/8 miles has been doubled to $300,000. The Melair Stakes for 3-year-old statebred fillies over 1 1/16 miles will be worth $300,000, an increase of $175,000 from 2011.

The richest race of the meeting is the $500,000 Hollywood Gold Cup on July 7. The Gold Cup is one of seven Grade 1 races at the meeting.

The Grade 2 Jim Murray Handicap over 1 1/2 miles on turf, which was worth $150,000 in 2011, is not on the schedule. As a consolation, the $70,000 Round Table Stakes over 1 1/2 miles on turf will be run on May 13.

The distance of the Grade 3 Inglewood Handicap on turf has been changed, from 1 1/16 miles to 1 1/8 miles this year.