10/05/2007 12:00AM

Connally BC Turf richest race of meet

EmailThe Grade 3, $200,000 Connally Breeders' Cup Turf on April 5 will be the richest of 22 stakes worth a cumulative $1.4 million during the upcoming meet at Sam Houston Race Park in Houston. The track opens for 68 nights of racing on Nov. 23. The season runs through April 5, 2008.

The Connally, a 1 1/8-mile turf race for 3-year-olds and up, will share the closing night program with two other turf stakes, the $50,000 Jersey Lilly for fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles and the $50,000 Sam Houston Turf Sprint Cup at five furlongs.

Among other multiple stakes programs is Texas Champions Day on Dec. 1. The card will offer eight divisional stakes for Texas-breds worth a cumulative $475,000. Another multi-stakes night is Jan. 26, when the $100,000 Maxxam Gold Cup for 4-year-olds and up at a mile and an eighth will share a card with the $50,000 Sam Houston Distaff.

For the new meet, Sam Houston will roll out an expanded overnight stakes schedule. It features 10 races, with the first, the $25,000-added Lilly Langtry for 2-year-old fillies at six furlongs, to be run on Nov. 23.

Purses during the meet are budgeted at more than $110,000 a day. Sam Houston will race at 7 p.m. Central on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, and 5 p.m. on Sundays.