Del-Mar Racecourse has the honour of hosting the 2017 Breeders’ Cup races. Our ante-post betting market is already live, for the biggest contests of the 2-day meeting (November 3rd/4th). Click on any of the following encounters, to view the latest live odds.
Racing At Del-Mar
The coastal city of Del Mar is a short drive from San Diego, heading north. This racetrack was built by a diverse consortium that included Hollywood greats such as Oliver Hardy, Gary Cooper and Bing Crosby.
Constructed in 1937, the complex also includes a fairground. In 1938 a titanic battle between the great Seabiscuit and a horse called Ligaroti attracted enormous crowds and became the very first thoroughbred fixture to be broadcasted by NBC Radio. You won’t be surprised to read that Seabiscuit won the race, but the winning margin might raise a few eyebrows. Seabiscuit was tested right to the wire and triumphed by just a nose.
In the few short years that Del Mar was open, before the outbreak of the Second World War, it became a place to see and be seen. It was a regular haunt of Hollywood stars and many spectators would visit just to try and catch a glimpse of a famous actor or actress.
Like many racecourses it was closed down and used for military purposes in WWII. First the Marines used it as a training base and later it became a parts manufacturing plant, for American bomber planes. When the war was over, it didn’t take long for Del Mar to get up and running again. Discounted fares were offered by the local railway and this meant spectators could get to the track cheaply. In 1946 the Bing Crosby Stakes was run for the first time, in front of a huge crowd.
The Saratoga Of The West
The venue was a roaring success, leading many to start referring to Del Mar as the Saratoga of the West. Throughout the 1950s, it became known for top quality racing that was rewarded with big purses.
The 1960s and 1970s saw a slight drop-off in spectator numbers, but the course was still seen as a very successful one. What’s more, the purses continued to grow and this trend carried on through the 1980s. In 1991, the first million dollar prize-fund was put up for the Pacific Classic Stakes and the event became an annual fixture. Some of the very best horses have taken part, including Cigar in 1996. The stage was set for Cigar to set a new record by achieving 16 straight victories. However, one horse clearly had not read the script! The rank-outsider, Dare And Go showed that he who dares wins and caused an almighty upset at what was meant to be a coronation for the mighty Cigar.
Betting With RaceBets
You’ll be able to bet on every single Breeders’ Cup race, when you sign-up for an account with RaceBets. We will also have some fantastic special promotions running, during this amazing festival. Join RaceBets now and claim your welcome bonus!