01/24/2006 12:00AM

Grass stakes pushed back to accommodate new turf


The list of Monmouth Park's major stakes for 2006 looks the same as last year's schedule, but the order in which the races will be run has been shuffled.

In order to assure the new turf course will be ready, several grass stakes have been shifted from their traditional dates to later in the season, including the Grade 3 Red Bank Handicap, the Grade 3 Boiling Springs Handicap, and the Jersey Derby.

The Red Bank, usually the first graded race of the season, in late May, has been pushed back to Sept. 2.

The Boiling Springs, run on May 29 in 2005, has been moved to July 4.

The Jersey Derby, held last year on May 30, will now be run on Aug. 6.

"The new turf course will be ready in late June," said Dennis Dowd, senior vice president of racing for the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, which operates Monmouth. "Work continues to progress on the new surface, and a late June starting point will ensure plenty of time for that course to take firm root."

Other significant changes include moving the Grade 3 Eaton Handicap from early July to Aug. 23; the Grade 2 Molly Pitcher Handicap from July 4 to Aug. 27; the Grade 3 Salvator Mile from late July to June 24; and the Grade 3 Sapling from Aug. 20 to Sept. 4.

Monmouth will offer 21 stakes worth at least $100,000, highlighted by the Grade 1, $1 million Haskell Invitational on Aug. 6.

2006 stakes schedule

Sat.,June 24Salvator Mile (G3)3YO & Up1 mile$150,000
Sat.,July 1Jersey Shore B.C. (G3)3YO6 furlongs150,000
Fri.,July 4Boiling Springs (G3)3YO F1 1/16 miles (T)150,000
Sat.,July 8United Nations (G1)3YO & Up1 3/8 miles (T)750,000
Sat.,July 15Long Branch B.C. (G3)3YO1 1/16 miles150,000
Sun.,Aug. 6Haskell Invitational (G1)3YO1 1/8 miles1,000,000
Sun.,Aug. 6Matchmaker Stakes (G3)F&M, 3YO & Up1 1/8 miles (T)150,000
Sun.,Aug. 6Oceanport Stakes (G3)3YO & Up1 1/16 miles (T)150,000
Sun.,Aug. 6Jersey Derby3YOs1 1/16 miles (T)100,000
Sun.,Aug. 6Lady's Secret StakesF&M, 3YO & Up1 1/16 miles100,000
Sun.,Aug. 6Regret StakesF&M, 3YO & Up6 furlongs100,000
Sun.,Aug. 6Teddy Drone Stakes3YO & Up6 furlongs100,000
Sun.,Aug. 13Monmouth B.C. Oaks (G3)3YO F1 1/16 miles200,000
Sat.,Aug. 19Phillip H. Iselin B.C. (G3)3YO & Up1 1/8 miles250,000
Sat.,Aug. 26Eatontown (G3)F&M, 3YO & Up1 1/16 miles (T)150,000
Sun.,Aug. 27Molly Pitcher B.C. (G2)F&M, 3YO & Up1 1/16 miles300,000
Sat.,Sept. 2Red Bank (G3)3YO & Up1 mile (T)150,000
Sun.,Sept. 3Sorority2YO F6 furlongs100,000
Mon., Sept. 4Sapling (G3)2YO6 furlongs150,000
Sat.,Sept. 23Monmouth Park Natc Futurity2YO6 furlongs200,000
Sat.,Sept. 23Monmouth Park Natc Futurity2YO F6 furlongs200,000