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Prairie Meadows Meet

The 2020 meet at Prairie Meadows will feature a new format.

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The Iowa Racing & Gaming Commission has approved Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino’s 31st season of live horse racing. Prairie Meadows, Iowa HBPA. ITBOA and IQHRA all worked together to create a new racing format which will begin on May 1, 2020.

The season will consist of 84 days of live racing featuring Thoroughbred racing throughout the entire season of which, 62 days will feature a combination of both Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing. This is a departure from the previous format, which featured separate breed race meets. The season will run from May 1 – September 26, 2020.

“We’re very excited for the 2020 meet,” said Prairie Meadows Vice President of Racing Derron Heldt. “This new calendar is a strong partnership between Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse organizations, and we believe the schedule plays to the strengths of both breeds. We’re very much looking forward to seeing the results of this new racing format in 2020.”

The first 22 days of the live racing season will focus on Thoroughbred only racing, with eight races scheduled for each race day. Beginning June 12, the Quarter Horses will be back on the track. The mixed race card will vary throughout the season.  June 12 – August 17 will feature eight Thoroughbred races and three Quarter Horse races scheduled daily. Beginning August 21 through September 26 the daily scheduled race mix will be six Thoroughbred and four Quarter Horse races. The number of Quarter Horse races on certain days will be subject to change based on the number of trials needed.

“We’ll see significant improvement in horse racing for 2020 thanks to this change,” said Iowa Horseman’s Benevolent & Protective Association President Dave McShane. “Prairie Meadows has been extremely accommodating. There’s no doubt that this change is a collective win for horsemen and breeders, the state of Iowa, and Prairie Meadows. We’re thrilled to see the mixed meet plan move forward.”

Iowa Quarter Horse Racing Association President Tom Lepic shares both Heldt’s and McShane’s enthusiasm regarding the new format.

“What a great day for the horse racing industry in Iowa. Our new mixed meet format will tremendously increase the number of racing opportunities for each of our horses as well as enhance the entire breeding program in the state of Iowa,” Lepic said. “The mixed meet is a win-win for both breeds, and we look forward to working closely with the Thoroughbred community and Prairie Meadows.”

A tentative stakes schedule for Quarter Horses includes 23 stakes. Details are subject to change.

Trial Date Run Date Race Name Sex/Age Estimated Purse Distance
  6/12 Prairie Dash 3YO&Up $15,000 250
6/12 7/3 Hawkeye Futurity (IA) 2YO $100,000 330
6/19 7/3 Cyclone Derby (IA) 3YO $70,000 350
  7/4 Keokuk Stakes (G3) 3YO&Up $40,000 350
6/13 7/4 Prairie Meadows Gold Futurity 2YO $175,000 350
6/20 7/4 Iowa Double Gold Derby 3YO $100,000 400
  7/18 Cy-Hawk Stakes (IA) 3YO&Up $25,000 350
7/24 8/14 Iowa Stallion Futurity (IA) 2YO $75,000 350
7/31 8/14 Iowa Stallion Derby (IA) 3YO $60,000 400
7/25 8/15 John Deere Prairie Meadows Juvenile Challenge 2YO $35,000 350
8/1 8/15 Adequan Prairie Meadows Derby Challenge 3YO $35,000 400
8/1 8/15 Bank of America Prairie Meadows Championship Challenge (G2) 3YO&Up $50,000 440
  9/12 Gridiron Special 3YO&Up $15,000 110
  9/25 Jim Bader Juvenile (IA) 2YO $20,000 350
  9/25 Valley Junction Juvenile  2YO $25,000 350
  9/25 Covered Bridges Stakes (G3) 3YO&Up $25,000 870
9/5 9/25 Two Rivers Stakes (G3) 3YO&Up $40,000 440
9/11 9/25 Valley Junction Futurity (G3) 2YO $250,000 350
  9/25 Altoona Derby 3YO $125,000 400
  9/26 Future of Iowa Stakes (IA) F&M 3&Up $60,000 350
  9/26 Terrace Hill Stakes (IA) 3YO&Up $50,000 400
9/4 9/26 Jim Bader Futurity (IA) 2YO $175,000 350
9/12 9/26 Polk County Derby (IA) 3YO $125,000 400

The 2020 live racing schedule will feature races on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday for both Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses. Post times will be at 6 p.m. Post times are subject to change for special race days or events. 

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