A total of 67 races have been scheduled as part of the Breeders' Cup Challenge "Win and You're In" program for this year. That is six fewer than 2012's 73 races.
Racetracks in 10 countries will participate in the program where winners of designated races gain automatic entry into Breeders' Cup races.
"We are very encouraged that horsemen from around the world continue to take advantage of the benefits provided in the Breeders' Cup Challenge series by awarding a guaranteed starting berth, paid entry fees, and travel allowances as the best way to secure a place into the Championships," said Breeders' Cup President and CEO Craig Fravel."
Now in its seventh year, the Challenge Series includes races outside of North America from Argentina, Australia, England, France, Germany, Ireland, Japan and South Africa. The first of the overseas events was the L'Ormarins Queen's Plate at Kenilworth Racecourse in Cape Town, South Africa won by Variety Club. The victory qualifies the 5-year-old for the Breeders' Cup Mile on the turf.
New North American races included in the Challenge are the Triple Bend Handicap on June 29 at Hollywood Park for an automatic berth into the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile; the Bing Crosby Stakes (Turf Sprint) from Del Mar on July 28; the Pat O'Brien Stakes (Dirt Mile) at Del Mar on Aug. 25; the Pocahontas Stakes (Juvenile Fillies) and Iroquois Stakes (Juvenile), both from Churchill Downs on Sept. 7, and the Canadian Stakes (Filly & Mare Turf) on Sept. 15 at Woodbine.
The Stephen Foster Handicap (Breeders' Cup Classic) on June 15 at Churchill Downs will be the first qualifying race in North America.
This year's Breeders' Cup World Championships will be held November 1 and 2 at Santa Anita Park for the second straight time.