The news just keeps getting better for Santa Anita Park — the horse track just got official word this morning that The Breeders’ Cup has selected the Arcadia track to host the world’s biggest international horse racing weekend for an unprecedented third consecutive year in 2014.
The news comes on the heels of word that Santa Anita has also been awarded three more months of racing dates every spring starting next year, and new of plans for the track to make improvements to much of its grandstand and Turf Club area this summer.
The 31st Breeders’ Cup World Championships, thoroughbred racing’s most prestigious international year-end event, consisting of 14 races with purses and awards totaling $27 million, will be held on October 31 and November 1, 2014.
Santa Anita Park, which is the site of this year’s Breeders’ Cup on November 1-2 (2013 Breeders’ Cup tickets on sale now), has hosted the Breeders’ Cup World Championships six times, most recently last year’s edition. The 2014 Breeders’ Cup will be televised by the NBC Sports Group. The 2013 Breeders’ Cup will also be televised by the NBC Sports Group with the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic shown live in primetime on NBC from 8-9 p.m. ET.
Over the years, some of the greatest moments in Breeders’ Cup history have taken place at Santa Anita, including the 2009 Breeders’ Cup Classic when the great Zenyatta became the first female ever to win the Classic. Last year’s Breeders’ Cup, witnessed by 89,742 over the two days, featured winners representing a cross-section of horses from the US and overseas, highlighted by Fort Larned winning the Classic and the 5-year-old Wise Dan capturing the Breeders’ Cup Mile, which later earned him the 2012 Horse of the Year title.
“Santa Anita has proven to be an outstanding host for our Championships, providing horsemen and fans around the world with a first class facility and one of the greatest experiences in sports. We are delighted to extend our partnership with Santa Anita for a third consecutive year,” said Craig Fravel, Breeders’ Cup President and CEO. “We also value our relationship with the Southern California business and entertainment community, who have demonstrated long time dedication and support of the Breeders’ Cup since our inception in 1984.”
The 2014 running of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships marks the 11th time that the event will be held in Southern California and the eighth time that Santa Anita will host the Breeders’ Cup, after hosting the event in 1986, 1993, 2003, 2008 and 2009, 2012, and this year.
Breeders’ Cup officials indicated that no decisions have been made on host sites beyond 2014 and that the organization remains open to visiting markets that can accommodate the two-day event during its traditional fall timing, provide world class hospitality for its participants and guests and showcase the world’s best Thoroughbred racing.
“To be chosen as the host site for a third consecutive year is a clear indication of Santa Anita’s standing in the worldwide racing community,” said Keith Brackpool, Chairman of the Los Angeles Turf Club. “We look forward to hosting this year’s two-day event in November and following that, we’ll immediately begin planning for 2014. On behalf of our fans, horsemen and employees, we look forward to again celebrating the very best our sport has to offer.”
“In addition to being the two-greatest days in Thoroughbred racing, hosting the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita for the next two years provides us with the opportunity to further develop the Breeders’ Cup brand as a world class entertainment and lifestyle platform,” said Drew Sheinman, Breeders’ Cup Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. “We look forward to forging new sponsor and business relationships in the community.”
“The Breeders’ Cup is a world-class spectacle and we are delighted that it will be returning to Santa Anita in 2014,” said Alan Rothenberg, chairman of the Los Angeles Sports Council. “Visitors from all over the world will enjoy our many first-class hotels, restaurants and attractions, and this prestigious international sporting event will boost our local economy by bringing tens of millions of dollars in economic impact to the region.”
Said Jon Miller, President of Programming, NBC and NBC Sports Network: “We are excited that the Breeders’ Cup has chosen to return to Santa Anita. The backdrop of the San Gabriel Mountains at dusk makes for a beautiful setting for a great two days of the world’s best racing, topped off by the Breeders’ Cup Classic in primetime on NBC.”
Arcadia Mayor Mickey Segal commented: “The City of Arcadia is extremely proud to be the host city for the 2014 Breeders’ Cup World Championships. Santa Anita Park and horse racing are very important to our community, and the Breeders’ Cup provides Arcadia with an opportunity to showcase both the city and the racetrack to the world. People from all over will come here and celebrate racing in the most beautiful setting in America. As the Mayor of the City of Arcadia, I encourage racing fans from everywhere to come to Arcadia and share this incredible experience with us.”
“The Pasadena Convention & Visitors Bureau and businesses in the area are thrilled to have the prestigious Breeders’ Cup returning to Santa Anita Park in 2014,” said Michael Ross, CEO, Pasadena Center Operating Company. “Past Breeders’ Cups have made a significant impact on Pasadena and the San Gabriel Valley area’s economy by filling our hotels, restaurants and shops.” “Even our museums have benefitted from hosting parties and VIP events.”
About Santa Anita and The Stronach Group
Santa Anita Park is a Stronach Group company, North America’s leading Thoroughbred racetrack owner/operator. The Stronach Group racetracks include Santa Anita Park, Gulfstream Park & Casino, Golden Gate Fields, Portland Meadows, Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course, home of the world-famous Preakness. The company owns and operates the Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida, and is one of North America’s top race horse breeders through its award-winning Adena Springs operation. The Stronach Group is one of the world’s largest suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering systems, technologies and services. Its companies include AmTote, a global leader in wagering technology; Xpressbet, an Internet and telephone account wagering service; and Monarch Content Management, which acts as a simulcast purchase and sales agent of horseracing content for numerous North American racetracks and wagering outlets.The Stronach Group is also a major producer of televised horseracing programming through its HRTV cable and satellite network and is North America’s premier supplier of virtual online horseracing games, as well as a leading producer of social media content for the horseracing industry.
About Breeders’ Cup
The Breeders’ Cup administers the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Thoroughbred racing’s year-end Championships. The Breeders’ Cup also administers the Breeders’ Cup Challenge qualifying series, which provides automatic starting positions into the Championships races. The 2013 World Championships will be held at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif., on Nov. 1-2, and will be televised live by the NBC Sports Group. The $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic will be shown live and in primetime on NBC. Breeders’ Cup press releases appear on the Breeders’ Cup Web site, www.breederscup.com. You can also follow the Breeders’ Cup on social media platforms, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.