Bet on Illinois Derby
Stakes: Grade II for 3-year-old thoroughbreds
Distance: 1 1/8 miles
The Illinois Derby was first run in 1923 at Hawthorne Race Course located in Stickney/Cicero, Illinois just west of Chicago. After being run at Aurora in 1938, it was discontinued and was only revived at Sportsman's Park in 1963.
Apparently, horse racing handicappers convinced Bill Johnston, the late Sportsman's Park president, into resurrecting the 1 1/8-mile race.
"Good idea, Dave," Johnston said when it was first suggested in 1960. But his racing secretary, the late Robert P. McAuliffe, said, "Feldman is crazy. This race won't draw flies at 1 1/8 miles."
The purse, at that time, was only $25,000, but a full field competed, and Lemon Twist won it before a packed house.
The Illinois Derby was such a success that owners and trainers started to ship horses from everywhere. The race has grown to be one of the richest for 3-year-olds.
Since 2001, the Illinois Derby is a prep race to the Kentucky Derby. Prior to that it was run between the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes. The 2002 Illinois Derby won by War Emblem was the last one run at Sportsman's Park Racetrack.
Graded Stakes Races
Japan Racing Association: NHK Mile Cup ,$2,160,000 ,3yo ,8f Turf
Japan Racing Association: Niigata Daishoten ,$838,000 ,4&up ,10f Turf
Pimlico: Allaire duPont Distaff Stakes ,$150,000 ,3&up f/m ,9f Dirt
Pimlico: Black-Eyed Susan Stakes ,$250,000 ,3yo f ,9f Dirt
Pimlico: Miss Preakness Stakes ,$150,000 ,3yo f ,6f Dirt
Pimlico: Pimlico Special ,$250,000 ,3&up ,9.5f Dirt
Belmont Park: Soaring Softly Stakes ,$100,000 ,3yo f ,7f Turf
Churchill Downs: Louisville ,$125,000 ,4&up ,12f Turf
Japan Racing Association: Keio Hai Spring Cup ,$1,221,000 ,4&up ,7f Turf
Pimlico: Chick Lang Stakes ,$200,000 ,3yo ,6f Dirt
Pimlico: Dinner Party Stakes ,$250,000 ,3&up ,8.5f Turf
Pimlico: Gallorette Stakes ,$150,000 ,3&up f/m ,8.5f Turf
Pimlico: Maryland Sprint Stakes ,$150,000 ,3&up ,6f Dirt
Pimlico: Preakness Stakes ,$1,000,000 ,3yo ,9.5f Dirt
Santa Anita: Lazaro Barrera Stakes ,$100,000 ,3yo ,6.5f Dirt
Japan Racing Association: Victoria Mile ,$2,160,000 ,4&up f/m ,8f Turf
Santa Anita: Desert Stormer Stakes ,$100,000 ,3&up f/m ,6f Dirt
Woodbine: Trillium Stakes ,$150,000 ,4&up f/m ,8.5f AW