03/19/2008 12:00AM

Cigar Mile sponsorship renewed by Hill 'n' Dale


Hill 'n' Dale Farms has renewed its sponsorship of the Grade 1 Cigar Mile, run at Aqueduct in late November, the farm and the New York Racing Association announced Wednesday.

The renewal is a three-year deal, which extends through the 2010 running. Hill 'n' Dale, whose president is John Sikura, initially began sponsoring the race in 2005.

The Cigar Mile, known as the NYRA Mile from 1988 through 1996, is the final Grade 1 event of the year on the NYRA calendar. Its roster of winners includes Forty Niner, Rubiano, Cigar, and Congaree. El Corredor, who won the 2000 edition, stands at stud at Hill 'n' Dale.

"We're very enthusiastic about sponsoring the Hill 'n' Dale Cigar Mile," Sikura said in a press release. "The one-mile distance is so significant to breeders, and the race is perfectly positioned on the racing calendar to attract Breeders' Cup runners in search of Eclipse honors."

"Hill 'n' Dale Farms has been a great partner, and we're so pleased they've extended their sponsorship of one of our top races for another three years,'' NYRA's president and CEO, Charles Hayward, said.

This year's Cigar Mile will be run on Nov. 29.