02/22/2013 3:02PM

Emerald Downs: Longacres Mile tops 2013 stakes schedule

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The Grade 3 Longacres Mile, $65,000 Emerald Downs Derby, and $75,000 Gottstein Futurity are among the highlights of the 2013 stakes schedule at Emerald Downs. The Auburn, Wash., racetrack has scheduled 28 Thoroughbred stakes worth a total of about $1.5 million for the meet, which runs from April 19 to Sept. 29.

Most of the stakes will be run on a Sunday, including the $200,000 Longacres Mile, which was won last year by Taylor Said and Kentucky Derby-winning jockey Mario Gutierrez.

The road to the Aug. 18 Longacres Mile begins with the $50,000 Governor’s Handicap at 6 1/2 furlongs on May 19 and continues with the $50,000 Budweiser Handicap at one mile June 16 and the $50,000 Mt. Rainier Handicap at 1 1/16 miles on July 21.

The Washington Cup, a series of six races for Washington-breds, will be run Sept. 8 and is topped by the $50,000 Muckleshoot Tribal Classic.

The stakes schedule includes 10 events for older horses, 10 stakes for 3-year-olds, and eight stakes for 2-year-olds.

“Our goal is to present a balanced stakes schedule and to gradually stretch horses out to longer distances,” director of racing Bret Anderson said in a press release. “We aim to have horses peaking for the biggest races.”