2013 Live Racing Season at Oaklawn Starts January 11

The start of the live racing season at Oaklawn is January 11, 2013.

Attention racing fans: the start of the 2013 live Thoroughbred horse racing season at Oaklawn Racing & Gaming in Hot Springs has been set for January 11.

Oaklawn is one of the premier race tracks in the country. Best known as the home of the Racing Festival of the South and Arkansas Derby, the track has played host to some of the biggest names in the sport including champions Zenyatta, Rachel Alexandra, and Smarty Jones.

According to information from a news releases sent by Jennifer Hoyt of Oaklawn, highlighting opening weekend will be the traditional 50-cent corned beef sandwiches Jan. 12 followed  by an Oaklawn baseball cap giveaway the next day on Martin Luther King Jr. Day Jan. 21. The track celebrates Presidents Day, Feb. 18, with the Southwest Stakes. Fans attending Rebel Stakes Day, March 16,  can get a glimpse at some of the country’s best 3-year-olds, but could also leave with a new boat and truck, courtesy of Bradford Marine since there will be a giveaway that day too.

New in 2013, Oaklawn is planning to open its Infield, complete with a Beer Garden, live music and family-friendly events every Saturday from Rebel Stakes through Arkansas Derby. The popular “Dawn at Oaklawn” program returns Saturday, Feb. 16 and will allow guests to get up close and personal with the horses and top racing personalities from 8 – 10 a.m. every Saturday through the end of the meet. Visitors can also take barn tours as part of the Saturday morning program.

Oaklawn’s 3-year-old stakes program is one of the most successful in the nation when it comes to producing Triple Crown hopefuls. That program should get even more competitive in 2013 with 289 points available based on the new qualifying method for the Kentucky Derby and purse increases for the Smarty Jones, Southwest (G3) and Rebel (G2) Stakes. The $150,000 Smarty Jones and $300,000 Southwest anchor the two holiday Mondays in January and February, respectively, while the $600,000 Rebel will be the marquee event of March.  April 10-13 is the Racing Festival of the South. The racing action culminates Saturday, April 13 with the 77th running of the $1 million Arkansas Derby.

Post times will be 1:30 p.m. Central on weekdays and Sundays and 1 p.m. on Saturdays. Some exceptions include opening day, Jan. 11, and the two holiday Mondays, Jan. 21 and Feb. 21, when first post is 1 p.m.  Oaklawn is located at 2705 Central Ave. For more information, visit Oaklawn.com or call 501-623-4411.

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Posted in Family, Kids, Travel Arkansas
4 comments on “2013 Live Racing Season at Oaklawn Starts January 11
  1. jack strafaic says:

    need a copy of your live meet for 2013 and the events on those days please

  2. Sheila Crockett says:

    thinking of visiting the track on March 16th 2013. is it recommended to purchase tickets in advance or at the location on the day of the race? Thanks

    • Zoie Clift says:

      Hi Sheila-Usually it depends on what kind of seating you want. If you want box seats etc, you probably want to reserve a spot ahead of time. And for the big races like the Arkansas Derby, etc, getting tickets in advance is essential. Here is a link to more details on reserving tickets: http://www.oaklawn.com/pages/plan-your-visit/
      Each day at the races is different in regards to crowd expectancy- a lot of factors go into the mix such as who is racing, the type of race, weather conditions, etc. I would call Oaklawn and ask them about the March 16 race date you are wanting to come to-and whether advance tickets might be necessary for this particular day, etc. Enjoy! Zoie

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