An earlier opening day on Friday, May 10 and new stakes races added to the iconic stakes schedule welcome fans this summer at Ruidoso Downs.
The new stakes races are the $100,000 (est.) Maiden Stakes for three through five-year-old quarter horses and the $45,000 (est.) Rita Danley Distaff for three-year-old and older New Mexico bred quarter horse fillies and mares. Returning to the Ruidoso Downs' stakes lineup is the AQHA Regional Juvenile Challenge for two-year-old quarter horses.
The Maiden Stakes trials will be contested on opening day (May 10) with the 10-fastest qualifiers racing in the May 27 finals.
The Rita Danley Distaff will be run on June 30.
The AQHA Juvenile Challenge trials run on May 17 with the finals on June 2.
The new stakes races join the legendary Grade 1 triple crown races at Ruidoso Downs. Those signature events are the $3,000,000 (est.) All American Futurity and $1,000,000 (est.) All American Derby (September 1-2), $1,000,000 (est.) Rainbow Futurity and $750,000 (est.) Rainbow Derby (July 20-21) along with the $1,000,000 (est.) Ruidoso Futurity and the $750,000 (est.) Ruidoso Derby (June 8-9).
“Our early, Mothers' Day weekend opening has enabled us to add some key stakes races that we think will increase participation this summer,” RuidosoDowns' president and general manager Jeff True said. “Our signature quarter horse races and several of our thoroughbred races have shown significant increases in numbers, so we are looking forward to a great racing year.”
Ruidoso Downs offers a $2-million Triple Crown Futurity Bonus to the owners of a horse which sweeps all three futurities. Three-year-old quarter horses race for the $1-million Triple Crown Derby Bonus for any horse that wins the three Grade 1 derbies.
New Mexico-bred racing will be celebrated during the Zia Festival on July 27-28. The largest purse is offered in the $400,000 (est.) Zia Futurity. Zia weekend provides 11 stakes races carded over the two days.
10 Friday Ruidoso Maiden Stakes Trials
17 Friday John Deere Juvenile Trials
24 Friday Ruidoso QH Futurity Trials
25 Saturday Ruidoso QH Futurity Trials
26 Sunday Ruidoso QH Derby Trials
27 Monday Ruidoso Maiden Stakes Final – $100,000 purse (est.)
31 Friday Mountain Top NM Bred QH Futurity Trials
1 Saturday Dash For Speed F & M Stakes – $25,000 purse
2 Sunday John Deere Juvenile Final (G3) – $25,000 purse
2 Sunday First Lady Handicap – $30,000 purse
7 Friday Mountain Top NM Bred TB Futurity Trials
8 Saturday Ruidoso QH Derby Final (G1) $750,000 est. purse
8 Saturday Mr Jess Perry – $100,000 purse
9 Sunday Ruidoso QH Futurity Final (G1) $1,000,000 est. purse
9 Sunday Ruidoso (AQHA) QH Juvenile – $100,000 purse
14 Friday Ruidoso Adequan Derby Challenge Trials
15 Saturday Mountain Top NM Bred QH Futurity Final (RG2) $350,000 est. purse
16 Sunday Ruidoso Sprint Handicap $30,000 Purse
22 Saturday Mountain Top NM Bred TB Futurity Final – $175,000 est. purse
29 Saturday Ruidoso Adequan Derby Challenge Final – $60,000 est. purse
29 Saturday Higheasterjet Handicap (G2) – $50,000 purse
30 Sunday Rita Danley Distaff – $45,000 est. purse
5 Friday Rainbow QH Futurity Trials
6 Saturday Rainbow QH Futurity Trials
7 Sunday Rainbow QH Derby Trials
12 Friday Zia QH Futurity Trials
13 Saturday Zia QH Derby Trials
20 Saturday Rainbow QH Derby Final (G1) $750,000 est. purse
20 Saturday Corona Cartel – $100,000 purse
21 Sunday Rainbow QH Futurity Final (G1) $1,000,000 est. purse
21 Sunday Rainbow QH Juvenile – $100,000 purse
26 Friday Ruidoso Downs Distaff Challenge Trials
27 Saturday By By JJ – $50,000 purse
27 Saturday Bobby Dan Crenshaw Memorial – $20,000 purse
27 Saturday Zia Handicap (RG2) – $50,000 purse
27 Saturday Sierra Starlet – $50,000 purse
27 Saturday Sierra Blanca Handicap – $50,000 purse
28 Sunday Zia 870 Championship – $50,000 purse
28 Sunday Road Runner Handicap – $50,000 purse
28 Sunday Zia QH Derby Final (RG2) $150,000 est. purse
28 Sunday Lincoln Handicap – $50,000 purse
28 Sunday Land of Enchantment Handicap – $50,000 purse
28 Sunday Zia QH Futurity Final (RG1) $400,000 est. purse
3 Saturday Mr Jet Moore Handicap (G2) $50,000 purse
10 Saturday Rio Grande Señor TB Futurity Trials
10 Saturday Rio Grande Señorita TB Futurity Trials
10 Saturday Ruidoso Downs Distaff Challenge
11 Sunday Brigand Handicap – $20,000 purse
16 Friday All American QH Futurity Trials
17 Saturday All American QH Futurity Trials
18 Sunday All American QH Derby Trials
31 Saturday John Andreini Memorial Stakes – $25,000 purse
31 Saturday Red White and Blue TB Claiming Stakes – $15,000 purse
31 Saturday Bill Reed Memorial Stake – $20,000 purse
1 Sunday All American QH Gold Cup (G1) $200,000 purse
1 Sunday All American QH Derby Final (G1) $1,000,000 est. purse
1 Sunday First Down Dash – $100,000 purse
1 Sunday Rio Grande Señorita TB Futurity Final – $175,000 est. purse
1 Sunday Billy The Kid Handicap – $30,000 purse
2 Monday Rio Grande Señor TB Futurity Final – $175,000 est. purse
2 Monday Tribute To The Troops QH Claiming Race – $30,000 purse
2 Monday Labor Day TB Claiming Stakes – $15,000 purse
2 Monday Ruidoso NM Bred Claiming Stakes – $15,000 purse
2 Monday Governors Handicap – $30,000 purse
2 Monday All American Juvenile – $200,000 purse
2 Monday All American QH Futurity Final (G1) $3,000,000 est. purse
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