Breeders' Cup strengthens its first day

The Breeders' Cup announced on Wednesday that it will reconfigure its lineup of races for this year, most notably putting all its races for females on Friday in support of a card that will have all its races exclusively for females.

In addition, the race formerly known as the Breeders' Cup Distaff will now be called the Breeders' Cup Ladies Classic. It will be the featured race on the Friday card.

The Distaff was run on Saturday in all its previous runnings. Both the Juvenile Fillies and the Filly and Mare Turf also will be moved to Friday. The Filly and Mare Sprint, which had its inaugural running last year, remains on Friday. New to the Friday card is the Juvenile Fillies Turf, which will be run for the first time this year.

In total, five Breeders' Cup races will be run on Friday, with nine now on Saturday.

New to the Saturday card will be the Juvenile Turf and the Dirt Mile, both of which were inaugurated last year, and the Marathon and Turf Sprint, which will be run for the first time this year. Remaining on the Saturday card are the Juvenile, Sprint, Mile, Turf, and Classic

The Breeders' Cup said it will have extensive female-oriented marketing and programs tied to the Friday card.

The Breeders' Cup had seven races from its inaugural in 1984 through 1998. In 1999, the Filly and Mare Turf was added, but the card remained confined to a single day. Last year, three races were added, and the program expanded to cover two days. This year, there will be three more new races, bringing the total number of Breeders' Cup races to 14, double the amount when the championship day was first run.

This year's Breeders' Cup will be held Oct. 24-25 at Santa Anita.