Beginning Friday, Jan. 8, Sam Houston Race Park will offer an expanded live racing season with additional stakes added to its 2021 meet. The 46-day meet will offer $2.4 million in purses, up from $1.8 million in 2020.
The highlight of the meet, the Houston Racing Festival, will take place Sunday, Jan. 31, and will feature the GIII Houston Ladies Classic and the GIII John B. Connally Turf, as well as four other black-type races. The 2021 season will also feature 14 Texas-bred stakes. In addition, the purses for all seven stakes races on Texas Champions Day–slated for Saturday, Mar. 20–have been increased from $75,000 to $100,000.
“We have worked closely with the Texas Thoroughbred Association and are pleased with the increases for our Texas-bred stakes in 2021,” said Frank Hopf, Sam Houston's senior director of racing operations. “Heading into 2021, we want to build on the positive strides made prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and take a lead role in improving racing in Texas.”
The 2021 meet will conclude Apr. 3, with the Quarter Horse meet starting Apr. 23. James Leatherman will serve as racing secretary. Stall applications are due by Wednesday, Nov 6, with the barn area opening Saturday, Nov. 28. Training hours will start Tuesday, Dec. 1. The first condition book is already available. For more information, visit shrp.com.