08/15/2012 2:51PM

Santa Anita stakes renamed, California Cup purse raised for fall Breeders' Cup meeting


The Breeders’ Cup Championships on Nov. 2-3 will be the focus of the upcoming Santa Anita autumn meeting from Sept. 28 to Nov. 4, but the meeting includes 26 other stakes, with 13 of them renamed. Purse levels are largely comparable to 2011.

The most significant changes are new names for the traditional Breeders’ Cup prep races, and higher purses for some of the California Cup races. Gone are race names such as the Norfolk, Goodwood, and Yellow Ribbon. This year, they will be run as the FrontRunner Stakes, Awesome Again Stakes, and Rodeo Drive Stakes.

The 13 renamed stakes were part of the Oak Tree meetings until 2010. Santa Anita and Oak Tree officials reached a financial agreement for those races to be run under their old names at Santa Anita last year. No such arrangement was made for this year. The purses and grades of the renamed races, concentrated on the first two weeks of the meeting, are the same as last year.

The California Cup program on Oct. 13 will have substantially higher purses for the Juvenile and Juvenile Fillies races, which were increased from $100,000 in 2011 to $250,000 this year. The increase is part of the newly formed Golden State Series, which has boosted purses for 2- and 3-year-olds California-breds this year.

The California Cup Classic remains at $175,000 and will be run over 1 1/16 miles on the main track. The 2011 running was over 1 1/8 miles on turf.