Santa Anita gives irresistible incentives for Classic Meet

December 3, 2022

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Min. Stakes Purse $100,000, Classic Meet Opens Dec. 26

Mike Willman/Santa Anita Press Box

ARCADIA, Calif.—Santa Anita Park’s Classic Race Meeting, which opens on Monday, Dec. 26, will offer horsemen the largest purse structure in Santa Anita’s storied 88-year history with significant increases in both allowance and stakes race monies.

Additionally, Santa Anita will again offer fans and horsemen the best winter turf racing in America, as its downhill Camino Real, turf chute and turf oval will provide a wide variety of options for horses sprinting and going a route of ground.

“Our turf is in tremendous condition,” said Chris Merz, Santa Anita Director of Racing and Racing Secretary.  “With our downhill and turf chute components, we are pleased to offer the betting public and fans alike a cornucopia of turf racing options. With so much emphasis now on recruiting turf prospects from all over the world, turf racing is more popular than ever before.

America’s Best Winter Turf Racing In Abundance Via Hillside, Chute And Turf Oval

“As the meet progresses, we are also going to initiate a $25,000 starter series in March for boys and girls on turf, both long and short.  We are of course dependent upon good weather, but we’re confident we’re going to be able to provide the best turf racing in the country and we’re excited to open on Dec. 26.”

Merz also said that significant purse increases will be offered in allowance and stakes races and that for the first time ever, all Santa Anita stakes on turf or dirt, will carry a minimum purse of $100,000.

“There’s no denying that expenses are up, across the board, in all facets of our economy,” said Merz.  “Along with the TOC, without whose assistance these changes wouldn’t be possible, we’re hopeful these purse increases will assist owners and trainers who are paying the bills on the athletes that put on the show.  Additionally, we want horsemen to know that all allowance races will now include a “state-bred” provision which means any horse that has won a state-bred race anywhere in the country, is still eligible for a $72,000 first condition allowance here at Santa Anita.”

Santa Anita 2022-23 Purse Increases

— All Stakes will have a minimum purse of $100,000

— First Condition Allowance increased from $69,000 to $72,000

— Second Condition Allowance increased from $72,000 to $75,000

— Third Condition Allowance increased from $73,000 to $76,000

— All Open Allowance Races will have a purse of $85,000

With first post time on opening day, Dec. 26, at 11 a.m., Santa Anita will present a total of six graded stakes.  Three of them are Grade I’s with a purse of $300,000, the Runhappy Malibu at seven furlongs, the La Brea at seven furlongs and the American Oaks, which will be run at a mile and one quarter on turf.

 The remaining three stakes are Grade II’s with a purse of $200,000.  The Mathis Mile (turf), the San Gabriel, at a mile and one eighth on turf and the San Antonio, at a mile and one sixteenth.

Entries for opening day will be taken on Dec. 21.  For additional information, please visit or call (626) 574-RACE.

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