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Jul 20, 2012

Purse increases set for Keeneland stakes


Lexington, KY (Sports Network) - A sizeable boost in purse money for several stakes has been announced by Keeneland Racetrack. The most significant increase will go to the Shadwell Turf Mile.

Keeneland's 2012 autumn race meeting will be conducted from Oct. 5-27 with 17 stakes races worth $4.5 million. The Turf Mile, which has been sponsored by Shadwell Farm since 1999, is the richest of the stakes and will experience an increase of $150,000 to $750,000.

"We are very excited, in partnership with Keeneland, to further enhance the status of the Shadwell Turf Mile, and to secure its position as one of the country's most prestigious grass races," said Rick Nichols, vice president and general manager of Shadwell Farm.

The last two editions of the race were won by Eclipse Award winner Gio Ponti. Owned by Castleton Lyons, Gio Ponti was voted champion older male and turf male of 2009 and the following year repeated as top turf male.

"Shadwell Farm is an invaluable member of the Keeneland family, and we greatly appreciate their strong commitment to Thoroughbred racing," said Keeneland vice president of racing W. B. Rogers Beasley. "The Shadwell Turf Mile is a centerpiece of FallStars Weekend, and this purse increase assures it will continue to attract the nation's top turf horses."

Also gaining purse increases of $50,000 to $150,000 will be the Woodford, a 5 1/2 furlong turf sprint, and the 1 1/16 mile Bourbon on the grass for two- year-olds. Both stakes along with the Shadwell Turf Mile will be run during the FallStars Weekend on Oct. 6-7.

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