FOUR OAKLAWN STAKES AWARDED ELEVATED STATUS IN 2022
Oaklawn’s commitment to boosting its stakes program for older horses was rewarded Jan. 28 when the American Graded Stakes Committee announced three of the track’s races had been elevated to Grade 3 status in 2022 and a fourth issued listed status for the first time this year.
The American Graded Stakes Committee reviewed 891 U.S. stakes races with a purse of at least $75,000 and assigned Graded status to 449 of them and Listed status to 204 races. Additionally, 20 new Listed races and two new Listed-Restricted races were upgraded from non-Listed Black Type status.
Oaklawn’s upgraded races are:
The Essex Handicap Listed to Grade 3
The Oaklawn Mile Listed to Grade 3
The Whitmore Stakes Listed to Grade 3
The Temperence Hill Stakes Non-Listed Black Type to Listed
“We want to thank The American Graded Stakes Committee for upgrading these four deserving stakes,” Oaklawn General Manager Wayne Smith said. “Oaklawn has set a professional standard for Thoroughbred racing and these upgrades are further evidence of that. We continue to take racing to a whole new level.”
The $500,000 Essex Handicap (G3) and $200,000 Whitmore Stakes (G3) (formerly the Hot Springs Stakes) will be the feature races on Whitmore Day, Saturday, March 19. Whitmore Day will honor the 2020 Champion Sprinter and four-time winner of the Hot Springs.
The $400,000 Oaklawn Mile (G3) and the $150,000 Temperence Hill Stakes will be part of the blockbuster $1.25 million Arkansas Derby (G1) card Saturday, April 2.
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