Edited Breeders’ Cup Release ― The Breeders’ Cup today announced the return of the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Dozen, an incentive-based participation bonus program for horsemen pointing runners to the dirt races in the Breeders’ Cup World Championships. Launched in 2022, the 12-race program is comprised of existing graded stakes races scheduled from May through October at six tracks throughout the United States.
The Dirt Dozen program will again award bonus credits funded by the Breeders’ Cup for first through third-place finishes in the 12 program races. Horsemen can use those credits toward entry fees for one of six Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup World Championships dirt races: the $2 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff, $2 million Qatar Racing Breeders’ Cup Sprint, $2 million FanDuel Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Presented by Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance, $2 million NetJets Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies, $1 million PNC Bank Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, and the $1 million Big Ass Fans Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile.
In Dirt Dozen races in the $2 million Breeders’ Cup race divisions, the bonus tier is allocated at $30,000 for first, $15,000 for second, and $7,500 for third. In Dirt Dozen races in the $1 million Breeders’ Cup race divisions, the bonus tier will award $15,000 for first, $7,500 for second, and $3,750 for third.
The Dirt Dozen program begins May 6 with the Derby City Distaff (G1) at Churchill Downs. The first three finishers in the race will earn credits toward entry fees for a potential start in the PNC Bank Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint. The program concludes Oct. 1 with the Zenyatta Stakes (G1) at Santa Anita Park, where the first three finishers in the race will earn credits toward entry fees for a potential start in the Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff.
Last year, 13 horses that earned credits through the Dirt Dozen program participated in the Breeders’ Cup. Three of those were also Breeders’ Cup Challenge winners who took advantage of their automatic qualifying berths, leaving 10 contenders that applied earned credits toward a start in the World Championships.
“After a successful launch in 2022, we are happy to again present our innovative Dirt Dozen program,” said Dora Delgado, Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Officer of Breeders’ Cup Limited. “Last year, many horsemen who took advantage of those credits toward entry fees for our dirt races were rewarded at the World Championships, and we look forward to extending the same incentive to connections who are targeting a start at Santa Anita Park in November.”
Dirt Dozen Races by Division
|Dirt Mile||7/29/2023||San Diego Handicap||Del Mar||Grade II||1 1/16 Miles|
|Dirt Mile||8/19/2023||Philip H. Iselin||Monmouth Park||Grade III||1 1/16 Miles|
|Distaff||7/1/2023||Fleur De Lis||Churchill Downs||Grade II||1 1/8 Miles|
|Distaff||10/1/2023||Zenyatta Stakes||Santa Anita||Grade II||1 1/16 Miles|
|Filly & Mare Sprint||5/6/2023||Derby City Distaff||Churchill Downs||Grade I||7F|
|Filly & Mare Sprint||8/27/2023||Rancho Bernardo||Del Mar||Grade III||6 1/2 F|
|Juvenile||9/10/2023||Del Mar Futurity||Del Mar||Grade I||7F|
|Juvenile||9/16/2023||Iroquois||Churchill Downs||Grade III||1 1/16 Miles|
|Juvenile Fillies||9/3/2023||Spinaway||Saratoga||Grade I||7F|
|Juvenile Fillies||9/16/2023||Pocahontas||Churchill Downs||Grade III||1 1/16 Miles|
|Sprint||7/1/2023||Smile Handicap||Gulfstream Park||Grade III||6F|
|Sprint||9/30/2023||Santa Anita Sprint Championship||Santa Anita||Grade II||6F|