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Thoroughbred racing action moves to Aqueduct on November 1

By Jenny Kellner | 10/27/2013 03:02 PM ET
PHOTO/Adam Coglianese

Thoroughbred racing action moves to Aqueduct Racetrack on Friday, November 1, with opening weekend featuring the simulcast of the Breeders' Cup World Championships from Santa Anita Park and a trio of graded stakes races.

Racing fans can cheer on their favorite New York horses and watch and wager on all of the Breeders' Cup action on Friday, November 1 and Saturday, November 2. Admission to the Big A is free, with gates opening at 11 a.m. Aqueduct's first race post time on Friday and Saturday is 12:25 p.m.

In addition to the Breeders' Cup simulcast, Aqueduct offers live racing over the three-day opening weekend, highlighted by Saturday's 70th running of the Grade 3, $200,000 Discovery Handicap for 3-year-olds and a pair of one-mile juvenile events on Sunday: the Grade 2, $250,000 Nashua and the Grade 3, $250,000 Tempted for fillies.

The Discovery is the first of 11 graded stakes at the Big A through the end of 2013, including the Holidayfest highlight of the meet, the Grade 1, $500,000 Cigar Mile Handicap on Saturday, November 30. The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) has announced a special purse incentive for the race, whereby any previous Grade 1 winner who competes in the Cigar Mile will race for a gross purse of $750,000. Should a winner of any Breeders' Cup race from any year take part, he or she would be running for a purse of $1 million.

Five other graded stakes round out the holiday racing action, which kicks off with the Grade 3, $300,000 Fall Highweight Handicap on Thanksgiving Day, November 28, and continues on Friday with the Grade 2, $300,000 Go for Wand Handicap. Joining the Cigar Mile on Saturday are the Grade 2, $400,000 Remsen for 2-year-olds; the Grade 2, $400,000 Demoiselle for 2-year-old fillies; and the Grade 3, $400,000 Comely for 3-year-old fillies.

Post time on Thanksgiving Day is 11:25 a.m., with the first race going off at noon on Friday and Saturday, November 29 and 30.

There will be a $250,000 Guaranteed Late Pick 4 on all Saturdays beginning November 9.

The annual Aqueduct handicapping tournament - the New York Handicappers Series presented by NYRA Rewards - will produce the final group of horseplayers from NYRA who move onto the Daily Racing Form/NTRA National Handicapping Championships in January in Las Vegas, where the first prize will be $750,000. The popular Aqueduct contest, which has a $400 entry fee with all fees returned as cash prizes, will take place on Saturday and Sunday, November 16 and 17.

On Saturday and Sunday, December 7 and 8, the "Spirit of Giving" weekend returns with the Toys for Tots program and a stocking stuffer promotion.

Aqueduct Racetrack generally will be open Wednesday through Sunday with a first-race post time of 12:20 p.m. The track will be closed on Christmas Day, Wednesday, December 25, and will conduct live racing on New Year's Eve, Tuesday, December