02/14/2008 12:00AM

'Win and You're In' expands to 49 races


The Breeders' Cup's "Win and You're In" program, which was inaugurated last year and made horses eligible to specific Breeders' Cup races off just one key victory, is doubling in size for this year, with 49 races now making up the program, the Breeders' Cup announced on Thursday.

The races will be run at 12 different tracks, including such newcomers to the program as Emerald Downs and Woodbine. Last year, there were 24 races in the program. The winners of these races will become eligible to the 2008 Breeders' Cup, scheduled for Oct. 24-25 at Santa Anita.

The expansion of the "Win and You're In" program goes lockstep with the rapid expansion of the Breeders' Cup itself. The Breeders' Cup was expanded to two days and 11 races in 2007, and will encompass 14 races in 2008, double the seven that were used when the Breeders' Cup was launched in 1984. The Breeders' Cup added an eighth race, but kept the championships confined to a single day, from 1999 through 2006.

Woodbine landed six races, marking the first time "Win and You're In" races will be run outside the United States. The most significant races at Woodbine are the Woodbine Mile, for grass milers; the E.P. Taylor Stakes, whose winner will automatically gain entry to the BC Filly and Mare Turf; and the Canadian International, a qualifier for the BC Turf.

At Emerald Downs, the Longacres Mile will be used as a "Win and You're In" race for the BC Dirt Mile.

Other new tracks in the program this year are Calder, Delaware Park, Monmouth Park, and Suffolk Downs. Two races from Calder's popular Summit of Speed, the Princess Rooney and the Smile, are part of the schedule.

A Breeders' Cup statement said "five or six" races could still be added to this year's program.

The races begin on July 5 with the United Nations and Salvator Mile at Monmouth. All the races will be shown on television, many on ABC and ESPN, the rest on HRTV and TVG.

Five of the 49 races - the Whitney, Pacific Classic, Massachusetts Handicap, Jockey Club Gold Cup, and Goodwood Stakes - bequeath automatic berths to the BC Classic. The Classic field is limited to 14