$700K Jeff Ruby heads Turfway’s 19 stakes during winter/spring meet

Turfway Park press release by Kevin Kerstein (Coady photo)

Total of $3.725 Million Across 19 Stakes On Tap During Meet

FLORENCE, Ky. (Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2023) – The Turfway Park Holiday Meet continues to unfold in a flurry of festive fervor but as the calendar turns, the Winter/Spring Meet will maintain high purses with a lucrative stakes schedule led by the March 23, $700,000 Jeff Ruby Steaks (Grade III), a pivotal stop on the Road to Kentucky Derby 150.

During the 52-day stand, the Winter/Spring Meet will showcase a total of 19 stakes races. The highlight is annually Jeff Ruby Steaks Day, featuring six stakes contests, including the 53rd running of the 1 1/8-mile Jeff Ruby Steaks. Supporting stakes events on the card will be the $300,000 TwinSpires Ky Cup Classic (Listed), the $300,000 Bourbonette Oaks – a Road to the Kentucky Oaks Championship Series Race, the $250,000 Animal Kingdom Stakes, the $250,000 Latonia Stakes and the $250,000 Rushaway Stakes.

          The Road to the Kentucky Derby’s first stop at the Florence oval will be three weeks earlier on Saturday, March 2 for the $150,000 John Battaglia Memorial (Listed). One day prior, fillies on the Road to the Kentucky Oaks will be in action for the $150,000 Cincinnati Trophy Stakes.

          Another spotlight race will be the 26th running of the Jan. 13, $125,000 Likely Exchange Stakes, which will mark the final opportunity in the “Make Your Mare” series, in partnership with Claiborne Farm. The top 3 finishers of the race will receive $10,000, $5,000 and $2,500 in credits towards a future stallion mating at the farm. The other two races in the series are the $125,000 Holiday Inaugural and the $125,000 My Charmer Stakes.

          Similar to the Holiday Meet, racing will continue on a Wednesday-Saturday schedule with daily first posts of 5:55 p.m. (all times Eastern), except Jeff Ruby Steaks Day, which will start at 12:45 p.m.

          Reservations and more information about live racing and gaming from Turfway Park can be found on www.Turfway.com

          Below is the full stakes schedule (purse totals all include funds from the Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund):   

DateRace NameRunningAgeDistancePurse
Saturday, Jan. 6The Turfway Preview293yo6 1/2F$125,000
Saturday, Jan. 13The Likely Exchange26FM 4&up1M$125,000
Saturday, Jan 20The Leonatus Stakes343yo1M$125,000
Saturday, Jan. 27The Wishing Well31FM 4&up6 1/2F$125,000
Saturday, Feb. 3The Forego404yo and up6 1/2F$125,000
Saturday, Feb. 10The Valdale37F 3yo6 1/2F$125,000
Saturday, Feb. 17The Dust Commander334yo and up1 1/16M$125,000
Saturday, Feb. 24The Wintergreen38FM 4&up1M$125,000
Friday, March 1The Cincinnati Trophy42F 3yo1M$150,000
Saturday, March 2The John Battaglia Memorial (Listed)423yo1 1/16M$150,000
Saturday, March 9The Big Daddy AKA The Richard S. Leigh Memorial34yo and up6F$125,000
Saturday, March 16The Queen28FM 4&up6F$125,000
Saturday, March 23The Latonia42FM 4&up1 1/16M$250,000
Saturday, March 23The TwinSpires Kentucky Cup Classic (Listed)244yo and up1 1/8M$300,000
Saturday, March 23The Jeff Ruby Steaks (GIII)533yo1 1/8M$700,000
Saturday, March 23The Rushaway373yo1 1/16M$250,000
Saturday, March 23The Bourbonette Oaks (Listed)42F 3yo1 1/16M$300,000
Saturday, March 23The Animal Kingdom383yo6F$250,000
Saturday, March 30The Serena’s Song3F 3yo6F$125,000

Jennie Rees is a communications and advocacy specialist in the horse industry who spent 32 years covering horse racing for The (Louisville) Courier-Journal before taking a corporate buyout. In addition to handling communications for the Kentucky HBPA, Rees is Kentucky Downs’ publicity director, manages in-season racing publicity for Ellis Park and serves as a consultant to the National HBPA. Other projects include the Preakness Stakes, Indiana Grand’s Indiana Derby Week and work for various HBPA affiliates and horsemen’s associations.