08/09/2012 3:23PM

Breeders' Cup confirms Santa Anita as 2013 host track


The 2013 Breeders’ Cup will be held on Nov. 1-2 at Santa Anita Park in Southern California, and the marquee $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic will be broadcast in prime time on the East Coast, the organization announced on Thursday.

The selection of Santa Anita Park will mark the seventh time that the track has been picked to host the event and the second time that the warm-weather track has been selected to host consecutive editions. Santa Anita will host this year’s two-day event on Nov. 2-3.

With the three-hour time difference between the coasts, the Breeders’ Cup Classic, the last race on the Saturday card, will be held in prime time for Eastern viewers, from 8-9 p.m. The 2013 Breeders’ Cup will be broadcast by NBC and its related television properties, under a four-year agreement signed last year.

The Breeders’ Cup was last held at Santa Anita in 2008 and 2009. The track was the first to host consecutive editions of the event. In 2010 and 2011, Churchill Downs also hosted the event consecutively, under a policy supported by some Breeders’ Cup officials to leverage the event’s marketing efforts.

Santa Anita was selected as the 2013 host over Churchill and Monmouth Park, which has hosted the event once, in 2007. The decision to focus on those tracks has frustrated New York racing fans, but Breeders’ Cup officials are reluctant to commit to tracks operated by the New York Racing Association because of a fickle and sometimes hostile political environment surrounding racing in the state.

Combined handle for the two-day event at Santa Anita in 2009 was $153.3 million for 14 races, while attendance over the two days was 96,496. In 2008, combined handle was $155.7 million, while attendance was 86,588.

At Churchill in 2010, combined handle was $173.9 million and combined attendance was 114,353. The next year, combined handle was $161.5 million on 15 races, and combined attendance was 105,820.

Beverly House More than 1 year ago
So... If they bring in more money at Churchill downs why not go back? Also the cost of the tickets at other tracks are outrageous so the everyday fans, not the celebrities that only show up for the big races, can't afford to attend their favorite sporting event.
mikey More than 1 year ago
We support this game all year and just like every other sport the small guy get's pushed to the side.The new blood that they want is told we do not need you today come back monday for the claimer's.Fan's ought to not bet these races and see if they care.BETWEEN BUYING SEAT'S (if you cab get them)PARKING AND GETTING TO THE B.C. IS A RICH MAN'S TRIP.
nicola c More than 1 year ago
the self proclaimed world championships should go on a poly track sometime to bring more international horses over after all its the world championships
AndrewD More than 1 year ago
What about Hialeah?
mikey More than 1 year ago
walter goode More than 1 year ago
laurel park has a better turf course than pimlico but no infield access. the baltimore washington corridor is the 4th largest media market in the u. s. any comments on how a stronach venue would do when holding a breeders cup.
walter goode More than 1 year ago
if pimlico holds the breeders cup kegasus coulg make an appearence
Steve Cochran More than 1 year ago
How about The Fairgrounds in New Orleans or Pimlico?
Saratogafan More than 1 year ago
New York's political environment is more toxic than ever now with an autocratic and despotic governor who holds an inherited disdain for racing. As much as I'd like to see the Cup run here, the BC is wise to avoid NY. It would be in-character for this governor to hold the Cup hostage if it would provide him any political gain or would further emasculate NYRA. Racing can't afford that risk. That said, I'm weary of seeing these races run so often at SA. If the BC wants to milk every possible penny out of the event until it dies from it's own created boredom, then we'll probably see it cycle between SA and CD. However, if the BC wants to act as an agent for the good of the sport, then it will find ways to increase the number of venues and areas of the continent to hold the event. A four year cycle with stops in California, Kentucky, NY(if the NYS politicial attack dogs eventually heel) and a rotating fourth slot dedicated to one of the mid level tracks would be great. As a fan, I've liked the event being held at Lone Star, Monmouth and Woodbine. Colonial, Remington and Gulfstream would be other interesting options. These tracks might be willing to agree to contract provisions that would have them install things like lighting, temp seating/pavillions and other improvements with financial incentives from the BC. The easy answer is to go to the places that are cookie cut already. It's also an answer that will be one more step American racings journey toward obscurity.
walter goode More than 1 year ago
thankfully santa anita is back on real dirt.
Blaine MacMillan More than 1 year ago
I know a joke when I read one and this is a joke. Belmont DESERVES a BC ASAP. John Gaines and John Nerud never had this kind of monpoly in mind when this championship day concept was created back in the early 1980's. 2008/09 SA, 2010/11 CD, now SA 2012/13. I realize TV and money dictates things, but with all due respect fair is fair. There's a limit to the hook-ups.
W.G. More than 1 year ago
Gaines and Nerud also likely never conceived the kind of societal changes and changes in the television landscape we have witnessed since they conceived the BC in 1982. Those changes dictate how the BC is done now, and I suspect Santa Anita could lose the 2013 BC to Hollywood Park if NBC insists on lights being installed at Santa Anita so NBC could air the BC through all of Saturday prime time plus an hour on Friday.
W.G. More than 1 year ago
If we continue to have issues with NYRA and so forth, what about working out a deal where Colonial Downs in Virginia does a major expansion so it can hold 55-60,000 for a Breeders' Cup? They have a 1 1/4 Mile main track (with a chute like Belmont that allows races up to 1 1/8 Miles around one turn) along with two turf courses (15/16ths of a mile and 1 1/16 miles in circumference I believe) that are heavily used in the summer, along with lights (though Colonial would need to have the lights in a way that it lights up both the main track and turf obviously for the BC). The weather I suspect would be better for the Euros as well: While not as warm as So. Cal or South Florida, it's usually not as cold as Churchill or Belmont could be in early November either, with the normal high temperature at that time around 65 degrees and the normal lows in the low-to-mid-40s, and likely in the low-to-mid 50s for a nighttime BC. That probably would be near-perfect conditions for a BC (that for a Saturday evening would likely start in daylight with temperatures around 60 and drop through the 50s during the evening). Colonial Downs is a track more than a few people I know would love to see get the BC and probably would make a point of being at for such. Aside from Colonial, what about Fair Grounds as a future BC host? New Orleans itself has always been a huge tourist destination and as noted in a prior post, the Fair Grounds annually hosts a Jazz Festival every April (shortly after the finish of the racing season) where they often are dealing with 80,000+ for several days at any one time. They probably would be able to make the adjustments to hold 55-60,000 for the BC (including if necessary installing lights on the turf course) if they got it, and the weather in New Orleans certainly isn't cold (normal high in early November is 75 degrees with normal lows in the upper 50s), so that would not be an issue.
mikey More than 1 year ago
Great idea.N.O.is a great city for the B.C.But it make's too much sense.
PennNatRick More than 1 year ago
I agree...N.O. is a great spot. Get Drew Brees involved. He helped N.O. get back onto the map and is paid handsomely for it as well. The BC will listen to him...he's vested into racing too. IMO.