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Arkansas Derby Among 3 New US Gr1 Races

Friday, 4th December 2009

Also in the US overnight, the Arkansas Derby (a major 3YO Triple Crown prep at Oaklawn Park) was 1 of 3 stakes races upgraded to Gr1 status by the American Graded Stakes Committee. The other 2 new Gr1 events are the Clark Handicap at Churchill Downs & Alfred Vanderbilt Handicap at Saratoga. However 5 races were also down-graded from Gr1 to Gr2: the Citation Handicap at Hollywood Park; Frank De Francis Memorial Dash Stakes at Laurel Park; Go For Wand Handicap at Saratoga; John Mabee Stakes at Del Mar; & Santa Maria Handicap at Santa Anita. Overall 487 US stakes were graded for 2010 (2 less than 2009): 113 Gr1 (23.2%); 156 Gr2 (32%); 218 Gr3 (44.8%); & 236 Listed (32.6%).

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