The Breeders’ Cup Comes to Del Mar

Written By: Matthew J. Black Breeders’ Cup Del Mar 2017

Last year the Santa Anita Race Track in Los Angeles witnessed the best horse race of the year. “Songbird” was the heavy favorite, but it was the 6-year-old mare “Beholder” that won the race. They were neck and neck in the final quarter mile, dashing with incredible strength before “Beholder” literally won by a nose.

The Breeders’ Cup Distaff, as the race is called, had Los Angeles and the horse racing world going wild. More of that magic is expected this November when the Breeders’ Cup World Championships arrives at the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club.

The Breeders’ Cup is considered by the horse racing community as bigger than the Super Bowl. While wealthy enthusiasts, top breeders, and hall of fame jockeys present their racing teams, we wait with extreme anticipation for the horse racing event of the year, held right here in San Diego.

Established almost 33 years ago and hosted all over the country, the Breeders’ Cup is coming to San Diego for the first time. Del Mar will witness 13 Grade I races over Friday, Nov. 3 and Saturday, Nov. 4. Hollywood celebrities, horse racing enthusiasts, and residents of San Diego will see horses compete for over $28 million in prize money, while betting over $160 million of their own.

Tickets for The Breeders’ Cup went on sale Monday March 6. You can purchase them online at www.breederscup.com/tickets, or call the ticketing office at 1-877-849-4287.

“We want to sell this place out early and quickly,” said Breeders’ Cup President Craig Fravel. That won’t be hard to do considering the national attention this event demands, and the fact that attendance has been capped at 37,500 people per day. That’s about 5,000 less than a typical opening day.

Walk up tickets will not be sold. In fact, it’s pretty much a guarantee that The Breeders’ Cup will sell out long before the first race lights up the crowd at Del Mar. If you are thinking about buying tickets then consider this:

– Friday single day tickets range from $35 – $375

– Saturday single day tickets range from $50 – $500

– Two day packages range from $85 – $1,875

The ranges are extreme, and for good reason. While opening day at Del Mar is both a fun event and human fiasco, The Breeders’ Cup will have less people and more seating. Nine hundred box seats will be added to the Clubhouse and Stretch Run sides. Four thousand fans will watch the races from the infield. Another 1,800 guests will enjoy the races from the comfortable confines of two brand new trackside luxury chalets.

When an event like The Breeders Cup comes around you can bet Del Mar will get a substantial facelift. An investment of $4.5 million will refurbish all luxury suites and trackside boxes, while new flat screen TVs are installed at Turf Club tables and a brand new state-of-the-art 8mm Daktronics Video Board will capture the races in high definition. Del Mar will look as sharp as the beautiful people who adorn the grounds on race day.

If the pageantry, fancy dress (and hats), and ticket prices are not for you then “get there early and take in the whole weeks’ worth of festivities,” says Del Mar Mayor Terry Sinnott. In the run up to the event Del Mar will make feverish efforts to encourage visitors, both national and international, to come early and “spend lots of money while they’re here,” says San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer.

While money may be on the Mayor’s mind, consider that the festivities will include cool sporting events such as a 5k run and a golf tournament at Torrey Pines. A concert series will be held at venues across North County. There’s also a charity event called “Jocktails” that will feature Breeders’ Cup jockeys as bartenders and servers. You just can’t make this stuff up.

When November comes remember the information above. San Diego will be swimming with visitors from all over the world. Do yourself a favor and jump out of the gates and join them. And, we’re off!

Grab Your Fancy Hats, The Breeders’ Cup Gets Ready for Del Mar