The third and final Thoroughbred meet of 2018 at Los Alamitos will begin Thursday, Dec. 6. The eight-day Winter season follows the 12-day Los Angeles County Fair at Los Alamitos meet in September and the 12-day Summer Thoroughbred Festival in June-July.
Racing will be conducted on a Thursday-Sunday basis through Sunday, Dec. 16. Post time will be 1 p.m on weekdays and 12:30 p.m. on weekends.
The two-week meet will be highlighted by a pair of Grade I races for 2-year-olds – the $300,000-guaranteed Los Alamitos CashCall Futurity and the $300,000-guaranteed Starlet – Saturday, Dec. 8.
The Futurity is one of the races on the “Road to the Kentucky Derby’’ with the winner receiving 10 points towards a berth in the Kentucky Derby next May 4 at Churchill Downs.
Among the leading candidates for the Futurity is Improbable, an impressive winner of the Street Sense Stakes Nov. 2 at Churchill Downs for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, who has won all four renewals of the Futurity – Dortmund (2014), Mor Spirit (2015), Mastery (2016) and McKinzie (2017) – since the race was moved to Los Alamitos from Hollywood Park.
Baffert has won the CashCall Futurity, which was run in Inglewood from 1981-2013, a record 10 times.
The Starlet – which is restricted to fillies – is one of the events on the “Road to the Kentucky Oaks.’’ The winner earns 10 points towards a spot in the Kentucky Oaks next May 3.
Among the possible starters for the Starlet are the Baffer-trained Chasing Yesterday, a half-sister to 2015 Triple Crown winner and Horse of the Year American Pharoah, and Vibrance, third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Nov. 2 at Churchill Downs.
Both the CashCall Futurity and the Starlet will be run at 1 1/16 miles.
Completing the stakes program are a pair of one mile races for 2-year-olds bred or sired in California – the $100,000-guaranteed Soviet Problem for fillies and the $100,000-guaranteed King Glorious.
The Soviet Problem will be run Saturday, Dec. 15 while the King Glorious will be offered Sunday, Dec. 16.
Track gates – including the Clubhouse and Vessels Club – will open at 9:30 a.m. General parking is free with grandstand admission $3 ($2 for seniors).
The wagering menu includes the Pick Six – with the traditional 70/30 split and no jackpot provision – a pair of $1 Pick 4’s – races 2-5 and the final four races – as well as the popular Players’ Pick 5 – a 50-cent minimum wager with a reduced 14% takeout rate which is offered on the first five races.
In addition to the Starlet and Los Alamitos CashCall Futurity, the Dec. 8 program will feature a live money handicapping contest with as many as three seats available to the 2019 National Handicapping Championship in Las Vegas.
There will also be a 2019 wall calendar giveaway – one per paid admission while supplies last – Saturday, Dec. 15.
Entries were taken Monday for the opening day program and a total of 69 horses were entered in eight races.
This article was released by Los Alamitos Race Course.