Woodbine Entertainment on Thursday revealed its industry-leading $16 million-plus Standardbred stakes lineup for 2019.
The 2019 stakes schedule is headlined by the 36th edition of the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup on Saturday, June 15 and the return of the $6 million (US) Breeders Crown to Mohawk Park on Oct. 25 and 26.
This year’s Pepsi North America Cup, Canada’s richest race for Standardbreds, will showcase the continent’s finest 3-year-old pacers and will be the 13th consecutive edition contested at Mohawk Park.
The Pepsi North America Cup undercard will again feature harness racing’s best across various divisions. The $425,000 Fan Hanover for 3-year-old pacing fillies, $370,000 Roses Are Red for pacing fillies and mares, $260,000 Goodtimes for 3-year-old trotters, $250,000 Armbro Flight for trotting fillies and mares and $100,000 Mohawk Gold Cup Invitational will make up the stacked Cup undercard on June 15.
Woodbine Entertainment is pleased to host the 2019 Breeders Crown, presented by Libfeld-Katz Breeding Partnership, at Mohawk Park. The $6 million (US) Breeders Crown will feature 12 championship races contested over two nights.
The four Breeders Crown finals for 2 year olds will take place on Friday, Oct. 25 with the eight finals for 3 year olds and up to be held the following evening on Saturday, Oct. 26.
Woodbine Entertainment reminds all owners and trainers of the new Standardbred Integrity and Accountability Initiative conditions in effect for the 2019 season.
Any owner who participates in a Woodbine Standardbred Stake Race (added money $50,000 or greater) with a trainer who has an outstanding Class 1, Class 2 or TCO2 positive test under appeal in any jurisdiction, shall be ineligible to participate as an owner in any Woodbine Standardbred Stakes for 12 months following the trainer’s conviction, if such trainer is later found guilt to the Class 1, Class 2 or TCO2 positive test. (The new conditions are only applicable to the a positive test occurring on or after Jan. 1, 2019).
New in 2019, Woodbine Entertainment has changed the format of the $665,000 Canadian Trotting Classic and $350,000 Elegantimage Stakes for 3-year-old trotters.
These events will no longer require eliminations and instead the final will be limited to the 10 highest lifetime money earners among the horses entered at draw time. Consolations may be contested depending on the number of horses entered for each event.
Following a strong stakes season in 2018, Woodbine Entertainment has kept all stakes in the same position on the calendar for 2019.
The $650,000 Maple Leaf Trot and $600,000 Canadian Pacing Derby remain on Labor Day weekend (Saturday, Aug. 31). The $400,000 William Wellwood Memorial and $380,000 Peaceful Way for 2-year-old trotters join the Canadian Trotting Classic and Elegantimage on Saturday, Sept. 14.
The $850,000 Metro Pace, harness racing’s richest race for 2 year olds, and $550,000 She's A Great Lady Stakes will be contested on Saturday, Sept. 21. The $250,000 Milton Stakes for pacing fillies and mares will also take place on this date.
Woodbine Mohawk Park will again play host to a leg of the Miss Versatility and Graduate Series in 2019.
The Miss Versatility for trotting mares will visit on Monday, May 20, while the Graduate Series for 4-year-old pacers and trotters joins the Somebeachsomewhere Stakes for a stakes-filled card on Saturday, June 1.
The Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots and Super Finals will be held at Mohawk Park in October. The Grassroots Finals will take place on Saturday, Oct. 5 with the semi-finals scheduled for Sept. 27 and 28. The Super Finals will be held on Saturday, Oct. 12.
Woodbine will again distribute money to all finishers in major stakes finals during the 2019 season.
The winner of the finals will receive the traditional 50 percent of the total purse, while those finishing sixth through last will take home one percent of the purse. The horses finishing second through fifth will receive 50-24-16-10 percent of the remaining purse.
Nominations for all Woodbine Standardbred Stakes close on Friday, Feb. 15. Conditions and payment details can be bound in the 2019 Woodbine Stakes Booklet
Woodbine continues to administrate stakes for Ontario Racetracks, including Grand River Raceway, Flamboro Downs, Clinton Raceway and Hanover Raceway. Details of their 2019 stakes can be found in the Stakes Booklet.
Stakes payments for all Woodbine administrated events can be made payable to Woodbine Entertainment. Payments can be made through the Race Office, by mail or online.
To view the 2019 Woodbine Standardbred Stakes schedule, click here