Stephen Foster, Pacific Classic Added To NBC Breeders’ Cup Challenge Broadcasts

by | 04.11.2017 | 3:12pm

The Breeders' Cup and NBC Sports Group today announced the 2017 “Breeders' Cup Challenge Series: Win and You're In, presented by Lane's End Farm and America's Best Racing” television schedule of 11 live programs featuring 17 qualifying races and other major stakes on the road to the Breeders' Cup World Championships.

This year's Breeders' Cup Challenge Series, now in its fourth year on NBC and NBCSN, has been enhanced by the addition of the Stephen Foster Handicap (G1) from Churchill Downs on June 17, the first U.S. “Win and You're In” for the $6 million Breeders' Cup Classic; the Arlington Million (G1) from Arlington International Racecourse in suburban Chicago on August 12, and the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic (G1) from Del Mar race track of San Diego on August 19. Del Mar is the home of this year's Breeders' Cup World Championships, November 3-4, which will also be televised live by the NBC Sports Group.

The TVG Pacific Classic is expected to be the much anticipated return of defending Breeders' Cup Classic (G1) winner Arrogate, rated No. 1 in the Longines World's Best Racehorse rankings, who is currently being rested following spectacular wins this year in the Pegasus World Cup (G1) in January and the Dubai World Cup (G1) last month.

Over the years, outstanding winners of the Arlington Million, and its companion race for fillies and mares, the Beverly D. (G1), have qualified to compete in the Longines Breeders' Cup Turf (G1) and the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1), respectively.

Putting the spotlight on premier racetracks across the country, the 2017 Breeders' Cup Challenge Series begins on Belmont Stakes Day, June 10, with the Metropolitan Handicap (G1) and the Ogden Phipps (G1) from Belmont Park, and continues with live telecasts of American fixtures throughout the summer with, among others, the Haskell Invitational (G1) from Monmouth Park and the Whitney (G1), the Travers Stakes (G1) and the Woodward (G1) from Saratoga Race Course. The series concludes in October with the Shadwell Mile (G1) and Juddmonte Spinster (G1) from Keeneland Race Course and the Jockey Club Gold Cup from Belmont Park.

“In conjunction with our partners at NBC Sports, we look forward once again showcasing the biggest stars in our sport competing in the highest quality of races throughout the summer and fall leading to the World Championships,” said Craig Fravel, Breeders' Cup President and CEO. “We greatly appreciate NBC's expanded commitment and expertise in covering Thoroughbred racing, and express our gratitude for the support of our presenting sponsors of the Challenge series in Lane's End Farm and America's Best Racing.”

“We are excited to present Breeders' Cup Challenge Series coverage from Belmont Stakes Day all the way through to the Breeders' Cup World Championships,” said Jon Miller, President of Programming for NBC Sports Group. “As the home of horse racing, the Breeders' Cup Challenge Series is integral to our live racing coverage in 10 of 12 months this year.”

In addition, several NBC Sports Regional Networks will present replays of select races after their initial telecasts on NBC and NBCSN.

Below is the 2017 “Breeders' Cup Challenge Series: Win And You're In” schedule on NBC and NBCSN. Breeders' Cup Challenge Series races are listed in bold. (All Times Eastern)

The schedule is also available online here.

Date Network Event Track Challenge/Division
June 10, 3-5 p.m. NBCSN Ogden Phipps H. Belmont Park Longines Distaff
June 10, 5-7 p.m. NBC Metropolitan Mile Belmont Park Las Vegas Dirt Mile
Jun. 17 NBCSN Stephen Foster Churchill Downs Classic
8:30-10 p.m.   Fleur De Lis   Longines Distaff
    Breeders' Cup Challenge at    
    Churchill Downs     
Jul. 8 NBC Belmont Sprint Championship Belmont Park TwinSpires Sprint
4:30-6 p.m.   Belmont Oaks   F/M Turf
    TBD Stakes  
Jul. 30 NBC Haskell Invitational Monmouth Park Classic
5-6 p.m.        
Aug. 5 NBC Whitney H. Saratoga Classic
5-6 p.m.   Test S. Racecourse F/M Sprint Division
    Summer at Saratoga    
Aug. 12 NBCSN Arlington Million Arlington Park Longines Turf
6:30-7:30 p.m.   Beverly D.   F/M Turf
Aug. 19 NBCSN TVG Pacific Classic Del Mar Classic
8-9 p.m.      
Aug. 26 NBC Travers S. Saratoga Classic Division
4:30-6 p.m.   Sword Dancer S. Racecourse Longines Turf
    TBD Stakes   TBD
    Summer at Saratoga    
Sep. 2 NBCSN Woodward S. Saratoga Classic Division
6-7 p.m.   Spinaway S. Racecourse 14 Hands Winery Juvenile
    Summer at Saratoga   Fillies
Oct. 7 NBC Claiborne Breeders' Futurity Keeneland Sentient Jet Juvenile
5-6 p.m.   Shadwell Mile   Mile
    Jockey Club Gold Cup Belmont Park Classic
Oct. 8 NBCSN Dixiana Bourbon S. Keeneland Juvenile Turf
5-6 p.m.   Juddmonte Spinster S.   Longines Distaff


The complete 2017 Breeders' Cup Challenge Series schedule will be released on Wednesday, April 12.

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