04/27/2005 12:00AM

Delaware 'Cap at $1 million

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The Delaware Handicap will be worth $1 million this year, making Delaware Park's premier event the second-richest dirt race for older fillies and mares in the nation. Only the $2 million Breeders' Cup Distaff is worth more.

Bill Fasy, chief operating officer of Delaware Park, announced Wednesday that an additional $650,000 beyond the $4.2 million already dedicated to the 2005 stakes schedule will be spread among three races.

Fasy said the track is making an overpayment to horsemen to raise the stakes purses. Money dedicated to overnight purses will not be affected.

In addition to the $250,000 boost for the Grade 2 Delaware Handicap, increases were given to the Kent Breeders' Cup and the Robert G. Dick Memorial.

The Kent, a Grade 3 turf race for 3-year-olds, will rise in value from $250,000 to $500,000. The Dick, an ungraded turf race for fillies and mares, received a $150,000 increase to $300,000.