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March 28, 2012

3 Curragh Races to be part of Breeders Cup Challenge Series

curragh races The Breeders’ Cup has announced that Ireland will host four Breeders’ Cup Challenge races this year. Winners of The Curragh’s Stobart Ireland Pretty Polly Stakes (G1), Moyglare Stud Stakes (G1) and the Juddmonte Beresford Stakes (G2) and the Irish Red Mills Champion Stakes (G1) at Leopardstown will earn automatic starting berths into a corresponding race in the Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California on November 2-3. A complete schedule may be accessed at the following link:

The expanded Challenge series, now in its sixth year, consists of 72 stakes races, which will be held at many of the world’s premier racetracks in the US, Canada, Argentina, Australia, France, Germany, England, Japan, and South Africa, as well as in Ireland. There will be 20 races held outside of North America, 18 of which are Group 1 events. This year’s series began in South Africa with the 4-year-old Gimmethegreenlight qualifying for the Breeders’ Cup Mile by winning the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate (G1) at Kenilworth. The series continues next month with two races at Royal Randwick in Australia: the Darley TJ Smith Stakes (G1) on April 14 for an automatic berth into the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1) and the Doncaster Mile (G1) a “Win and You’re In” berth into the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1).


As part of the enhanced benefits program for Breeders’ Cup Challenge winners introduced last year, the Breeders’ Cup will again pay the entry fees of all Challenge winners into the Championships and provide a travel allowance of US$20,000 to the winning connections of each Challenge winner from outside of North America and a US$10,000 travel allowance for winners of Challenge races held in North America. The Challenge winner must be nominated to the Breeders’ Cup program by the Championships’ pre-entry deadline of Oct. 22 to receive the rewards.

Breeders of Challenge winners will also benefit as the Breeders’ Cup will pay a US$10,000 award to the nominator of each Challenge race winner.

In addition to the free entry fees and travel allowance for Challenge winners, Breeders’ Cup is also offering a new early nomination deadline for the existing Horses of Racing Age. The program is available anywhere in the world to owners of any previously non-nominated horses sired by a stallion nominated during the conception year. This year, 2-year-olds by a nominated Breeders’ Cup stallion can join the program for US$12,000; Northern Hemisphere 3-year-olds and older for US$50,000 and Southern Hemisphere 3-year-olds and older for US$25,000. Following the July 15 deadline, the price for runners by nominated stallions increases to US$100,000 up until the time of October 22, the pre-entry deadline for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships races.

“We are very pleased to again to partner with the Horse Racing Ireland and officials at The Curragh and Leopardstown in providing such outstanding races to our series and give horsemen the opportunity to gain automatic starting positions in the Breeders’ Cup World Championships,” said Craig Fravel, president and CEO of Breeders’ Cup Ltd. “The Breeders’ Cup Challenge creates increased international awareness for the world’s great horse races and for the outstanding horses that will be competing in the Championships.”