01/19/2005 1:00AM

Two stakes get purse hike


VANCOUVER, British Columbia - The Grade 3 British Columbia Derby highlights the 46 stakes for the 2005 meet at Hastings. The track's season will run from April 16 through Nov. 27.

With a purse of $250,000, the B.C. Derby on Sept. 24 will again be the track's richest race of the year.

B.C. Cup Day on Aug. 1 will feature seven stakes worth a total of $365,000. The day's top race is the $65,000 B.C. Cup Classic.

The Grade 3 Lieutenant Governors', for 3-year-olds and up, and the Fantasy for 2-year-old fillies each received a $25,000 purse boost to $125,000 and $75,000, respectively.

Two new CTHS Sales Stakes have been added to the schedule. In addition to the Sales Stakes for 2-year-olds held in the fall, races for 3-year-old Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society sales graduates will be held in June. Both races are at 6 1/2 furlongs and will carry a $40,000 purse. The fillies division goes June 18 and colts and geldings June 19.

In other changes, the Oaks Preview has been dropped from the schedule and the Premiers lost its Grade 3 designation. The purse for the Premiers remains the same at $100,000, however.