Whitney to headline Fasig-Tipton Festival of Racing at Saratoga
SARATOGA SPRINGS — The 91st running of the prestigious Grade 1, $1.2 million Whitney, one of North America’s premier races, will headline a day of world class thoroughbred racing and special events at Saratoga Race Course today.
The nine-furlong Whitney will pair with the Grade 1, $500,000 Longines Test for 3-year-old fillies, and the Grade 3, $200,000 Fasig-Tipton Waya for turf fillies and mares. Today’s card also will feature two additional turf stakes: the $100,000 Fasig-Tipton Lure and the $100,000 Fasig-Tipton De La Rose for fillies and mares.
Gates will open at 10:30 a.m. on Whitney Day with the first post scheduled for 1 p.m.
“The Whitney is a race steeped in history and tradition and has delivered some of the most memorable moments in racing history,” said NYRA CEO and President Chris Kay in a press release. “This year’s field reflects the strength of the New York-bred program with morning line favorites Diversify and Mind Your Biscuits ready to compete in the 91st renewal of this revered race. These two New York-breds will face last year’s Belmont Stakes winner Tapwrit and Jim Dandy winner Good Samaritan, amongst other contenders. We look forward to another exciting edition of the Whitney, featuring some of the best horses in the nation.”
The Whitney will be part of a special NYRA Bets Lake Pick 5. The multi-race wager covers the last five races of every card of live racing at Saratoga. The Whitney Day edition will feature a minimum single-ticket payout of $500,000 to NYRA Bets customers nationwide online and on-track in New York. The offer is only available to NYRA Bets customers.
A special edition of Saratoga Live will be broadcast on FS2 beginning at 2:30 p.m. NBCSN will air live coverage of the Longines Test and Whitney beginning at 5 p.m. The Whitney is scheduled to go to post at 5:46 p.m.
All guests on Whitney Day are subject to enhanced screening upon entering the grounds and are strongly encouraged to allot extra time for arrival.
The morning schedule on Whitney Day will be modified as follows:
Breakfast at Saratoga, presented by the Capital District Transportation Authority, will be slightly abbreviated and will operate from 7 to 9 a.m. The final backstretch tram tour will depart at 8:30 a.m.
All guests on track will be asked to depart the grounds by 9:30 a.m. in preparation for gates reopening at the traditional time of 10:30 a.m.
NYRA will honor the winning connections of the Whitney with a special custom-designed horse blanket made of hundreds of Marylou Whitney pink roses. The Whitney will also be distinguished by a sterling silver, three-handled chalice trophy that is designated for the winning owner. The trophy is adorned with the Whitney crest to commemorate one of Saratoga’s most prestigious and historic races.
Today will mark the beginning of the Fasig-Tipton Festival of Racing, which celebrates the partnership between NYRA and Fasig-Tipton as a prelude to Fasig-Tipton’s annual Saratoga sales at the Humphrey S. Pavilion on Aug. 6, 7, 11 and 12. The festival includes the “Best Turned Out Horse” award, during which Fasig-Tipton will recognize the hard work that goes into daily grooming with a special prize for the groom of the best-turned-out horse participating in the Whitney. The award will be presented to the winning groom in the winner’s circle prior to the race.
Fans today are also invited to visit Fashion Saturdays at the Coca-Cola Saratoga Pavilion from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Designed to showcase the tradition of style in thoroughbred racing, Fashion Saturdays features women’s and men’s apparel and accessories from local retailers, as well as a selection of home decor, spa care and jewelry items
On Whitney Day, the Community Outreach Booth will host the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, which aims to preserve the history and foster understanding of thoroughbred racing in America by providing public access to equine art, artifacts, memorabilia, film, video, books, and historical archives.
NYRA invites fans who are in attendance on Whitney Day to experience The Stretch for free from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. The Stretch is Saratoga’s exclusive new hospitality area located in the Grandstand at the Top of the Stretch. There will be food and drink specials and live DJ entertainment. Fans can enjoy the new amenities at The Stretch, including a private bar, concessions, hi-definition video screens and televisions, and dramatic views of the stretch run.
Single-day grandstand admission for Whitney Day will be $5 and clubhouse admission will be $8 for guests who purchase their tickets prior to the day of the event. Single-day grandstand admission is $7 and clubhouse admission is $10 when purchased at the gate.