04/07/2016 10:43AM

Changes to Washington Cup races

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AUBURN, Wash. - The Washington Cup isn’t just for Washington-breds anymore.

Officials from Emerald Downs and Hastings Racecourse in Vancouver have agreed to allow horses bred in British Columbia or sired by stallions standing in the province to compete in select Washington Cup stakes races Aug. 28 at Emerald Downs. Those races include two stakes for 3-year-olds and two for older horses. In return, horses foaled in Washington or sired by stallions standing in the state will be eligible to compete in four of the B.C. Cup races at Hastings, including two stakes for 3-year-olds on Aug. 1 and two events for older horses Oct. 16. Each of the eight races carries a purse of $50,000.

In February, the two tracks, about 165 miles apart, announced a new $25,000 Canadian bonus payable to any 3-year-old who wins both the Emerald Downs Derby and the British Columbia Derby, or any 3-year-old filly who sweeps the Washington Oaks and B.C. Oaks.

Only two horses, Roscoe Pito in 2003 and Winning Machine in 2009, have swept both derbies in Emerald Downs’s 20-year history. Three fillies – Ever Lasting (1996), Zenovit (2010), and Class Included (2011) – have captured both the Washington and B.C. oaks.