Del Mar Aiming to Take Record Purses Higher

Del Mar | Horsephotos

Edited Press Release

Del Mar Thoroughbred Club projected its most lucrative racing season ever last summer, then backed it up with a record-breaking meet that saw purse levels total above $25 million for the session resulting in an unprecedented average purse payout of more than $800,000 per day. Those numbers, the highest in California racing history, are in the track's sites once again with the aim to go even bigger for this year's 31-day stand, which will be the iconic track's 84th season.

As it did in 2022, the seaside oval will present 39 major stakes, six of which are designated as Breeders' Cup Challenges races, offering a total of $8,275,000 during its eight-week summer run. It also will continue its “Ship & Win” program to attract more horses to come and take part in the summer festivities and continue with its well-received Maiden Dirt Bonus plan, which was fully implemented last summer.

Del Mar's summer meet set records in 2022 with more than $18.7 million in daily average handle and a robust 9.1 average field size, ranking it high up among the nation's elite racing programs.

“We were absolutely thrilled by the huge response last year from our horsemen and horsewomen and our fans,” said Del Mar's executive vice president and director of racing Tom Robbins. “The racing throughout the summer was extremely safe and first-rate. Obviously, 2022 set a very high bar on all levels; we're excited for the challenge of continuing these very strong trends.”

“Del Mar is the pinnacle of racing in the United States,” said Thoroughbred Owners of California chairman Gary Fenton. “And the success is enjoyed by and trickles down to all of California. Every summer gets bigger and better and it's all due to the tremendous work put in by DMTC and our horsemen and horsewomen.”

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