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Saratoga and Del Mar Swing Into Action This Week

The second half of the season gets going in high gear this week when Del Mar and Saratoga kick off their boutique meets on opposite ends of the country.

Racing fans in Southern California and Upstate New York will be treated to a pair of all-star meets, with no fewer than nine Breeders’ Cup bids in the offing.

Del Mar, which opens for business Wednesday, will offer five “Win and You’re In” Breeders’ Cup races, starting with San Diego Handicap (G2, guaranteed berth into the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile) July 28. The Clement Hirsch (G1, Ladies’ Classic) Aug. 4, Del Mar Handicap (G2, Breeders’ Cup Turf) Aug. 25, Pacific Classic (G1, Breeders’ Cup Classic) Aug. 26 and Del Mar Futurity (G1, Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile) Sept. 5 round out the slate.

Saratoga opens Friday and if 2011 is any indication it will once again prove pivotal in this year’s Breeders’ Cup. The “Win and You’re In” action kicks off in the Whitney Handicap (G1, guaranteed berth into the Breeders’ Cup Classic) Aug. 4 and is followed by the Ballerina (G1, Filly & Mare Sprint (Aug. 24, Personal Ensign (G1, Ladies’ Classic) Aug. 26 and Three Chimneys Hopeful (G1, Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile) September 3.

The Whitney is shaping up as a definitive race in the Classic division and could lure Santa Anita Handicap (G1) and Stephen Foster (G1) winner Ron the Greek, as well as 2010 Preakness winner and 2011 Met Mile (G1) winner Shackleford, Suburban (G2) winner Mucho Macho Man, Flat Out and Stay Thirsty.

–Edited Breeders’ Cup press release

Saratoga/NYRA photo