05/14/2012 11:05AM

Parx Racing: Cotillion purse bumped to $1 million

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Parx Racing has added a second million-dollar race to its stakes lineup for 2012.

The recently finalized stakes package, 26 stakes worth $5.3 million, includes a $250,000 bump to the Cotillion for 3-year-old fillies. Now a Grade 1 race for the first time, the $1 million Cotillion will be part of a blockbuster four-stakes package on Sept. 22 that also includes the $1 million Pennsylvania Derby, the $300,000 Gallant Bob for 3-year-old sprinters, and the $75,000 Alphabet Soup at 1 1/16 miles on turf for Pennsylvania-breds.

The 1 1/8-mile Pennsylvania Derby also will carry a $50,000 bonus for any horse who has won a Triple Crown race, the Travers, or the Haskell.

The Grade 3 Turf Monster Handicap on Sept. 3, one of two Parx races with Win and You’re In status for this fall’s Breeders’ Cup, will be worth $350,000, an increase of $100,000 from last year.

In addition to the Gallant Bob, two other races received purse increases of $50,000 apiece, bringing the value of the Grade 3 Dr. James Penny Handicap for fillies and mares to $250,000 and the Grade 3 Smarty Jones for 3-year-olds to $350,000.

Dropped from the schedule were the Brandywine, a $150,000 race for 2-year-old fillies, and a pair of $75,000 stakes for Pennsylvania-bred 3-year-olds, the Peppy Addy and the Caught in the Rain.

The Grade 3 Greenwood Cup, a 1 1/2-mile dirt race that is a Win and You’re In event for the Breeders’ Cup, took a $50,000 cut and will now be worth $200,000.

W.G. More than 1 year ago
What Parx should do is move the Cotillion to Memorial Day for 2013 (three and one-half weeks after the Kentucky Oaks) with the idea of positioning it so it can potentially be the middle leg of a new official Triple Tiara that would have the Kentucky Oaks as the first leg and the Coaching Club American Oaks 26 days after the Cotillion (and two weeks after the Belmont Stakes) as the third leg, with all three races worth $1 Million and lengthened in distance, in each case to the same distances their male counterparts run in the Triple Crown (with the Kentucky Oaks going to 1 1/4 Miles, the Cotillion to 1 3/16 Miles and CCA Oaks returned to its former 1 1/2 Mile distance). This to me could go a long way to keep interest in the sport outside of the Triple Crown by having this series be the female counterpart.