The fall Grand Circuit meet at The Red Mile in Lexington, KY has long been the showcase for the very finest harness racing our sport has to offer.
The historic red clay mile oval is a true test that separates the champion from the pretender. They greats have all raced here, with Immortals such as Greyhound,and Moni Maker adding to their rich legacy with remarkable Red Mile accomplishments.
The Red Mile shares the mile track world race record for both gaits with The Meadowlands. Pacertoured the strip in 1:46.4 during the 2008 meet to equal the fastest race ever. A year earlier, both and Giant Diablo trotted 1:50.1 miles to set the bar.
The 2012 Grand Circuit meeting will bring the stars of harness racing to Kentucky for two weeks beginning on Thursday, September 27th. The traditional week one feature is the Bluegrass Stakes for all divisions raced with an evening post time of 7:00 on Thursday, Friday & Saturday, then a Sunday matinee at 1:00PM.
The second week of the Championship Meet is an all daylight schedule with racing Thursday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday at 1:00 PM each afternoon. The International Stallion Stakes for freshmen pacers and trotters populate Thursday and Friday and Saturday is Ladies’ Day with the filly divisions of the top sophomore stakes featured.
Closing day is Sunday, October 7th and the best has been held for last. The Crown Jewel of the Red Mile meet, the 120th Kentucky Futurity is scheduled for that afternoon and the promise of another epic battle looms.
The last bastion of heat racing for the trot, the Futurity demands both the speed and endurance that only a standardbred can produce. The format requires the champion to win two heats in a single afternoon, often requiring a race-off between the heat winners.
The supporting card on Sunday includes the Tattersalls Pace, an important stake for the three year old pacing colts, as well as the Allerage Farms Open events for the stars of both gaits and sexes of the older horse division.
Beginning at 7:00 on the evening of Tuesday, October 2nd is the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale where the champions of the future are sold at auction. The most desired pedigrees in the business are well represented by the progeny of the very same horses who thrilled us over this ground in seasons past. The sale continues each evening at 7:00, concluding on Saturday night.
The Grand Circuit Late Closer nominations have a closing date of September 15. Please call the Racing Office at (859) 258-7670 for details and to make shipping arrangements.
Stalls are a commodity this year, do not ship without confirmation. Visit The Red Mile website for all pertinent information on the fall meet.
by Nick SALVI