SHAKOPEE, MN – Canterbury Park released its 2017 Thoroughbred stakes schedule today. The highlight of the meet will continue to be the one mile $200,000 Mystic Lake Derby for 3-year olds on the turf to be run on August 26. The stakes schedule includes 32 races and over $2 million in purses. Owners of Minnesota-breds will find a pair of new state-bred turf stakes on June 10, the Minnesota Turf and Minnesota Turf Distaff. Both races will be run at 7 1/2 furlongs and will offer $50,000 purses ushering in a renewal of sorts for state bred grass horses.
Opening weekend will feature a pair of 5.5 furlong sprints that will be open to 3-year olds and up this season, the $50,000 Paul Bunyan, featuring the most dangerous trophy in racing, the Bunyan Axe, and the $50,000 Etoile du Nord.
Minnesota Festival of Champions Day will take place on Sunday, August 20th and will feature six state bred stakes races worth a combined $410,000 in purses.
“I am pleased with the well-rounded stakes schedule that Canterbury will offer in 2017,” said president Randy Sampson. “It will be very appealing to horsemen and owners around the country and continues our tradition of attracting quality fields that the horse betting public seeks. We have seen several horses that competed in stakes here in 2016 continue to succeed elsewhere.”
Mystic Lake Derby champ One Mean Man win the $100,000 Jefferson Cup while the third place finisher, Hay Dakota, won the Grade 3 Commonwealth Turf Stakes giving regular Canterbury rider Denny Velazquez and trainer Joel Berndt their first graded stakes victory. Lady Canterbury winner Secret Someone won the $350,000 Kentucky Downs Ladies Turf Stakes. A pair of outstanding 2-year olds also made their mark elsewhere with Shakopee Juvenile winner Even Thunder taking the King’s Swan Stakes at Aqueduct and Line Judge, winner of the Careless Navigator and owned locally by Barry and Joni Butzow, won the Jean Lafitte at Delta Downs.
The first condition book will be available on January 20th and stall applications are due by March 13. The complete stake schedule can be downloaded here: