WHAT'S HAPPENING TRAVERS WEEK AT SARATOGA RACE COURSE
Travers Week (Week #6) of Saratoga Race Course
Tuesday, August 23 - Monday, August 29, 2016
One of the most-anticipated weeks of the Saratoga Race Course meet is here! All leading up to the oldest stakes race in the country, the Travers Stakes. A week full of family fun, world-class thoroughbred racing, entertainment and so much more.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 23
The post position draw for the 147th running of the Travers will be televised live on Time Warner Cable News beginning at6 p.m. and streamed live on www.twcnews.com.The Travers is expected to feature a full field of 14 horses for the first time since 1977, led by Preakness and Haskell winner Exaggerator, Belmont Stakes winner Creator and the top three finishers from the Jim Dandy, the traditional Travers prep.
A limited number of general admission grandstand tickets for the 147th running of the Grade 1, $1.25 million Travers at Saratoga Race Course on Saturday, August 27are currently available for purchase. Tickets are $10 and available online at Ticketmaster.com, in-person at the NYRA Box Office at Saratoga Race Course, or by phone at 1-844-NYRA-TIX. There is a purchase limit of 8 general admission tickets per person. Clubhouse upgrades will not be available on Travers Day. All reserved seats, dining, hospitality and clubhouse general admission are sold out. Paid attendance for the 2016 edition of the Travers will be capped at 50,000, as had been the case in 2015, in an effort to provide the best experience possible for guests. Saratoga season pass holders are guaranteed admission on Travers Day.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 24
The day's feature race is the $100,000 John's Call for 3-year-olds and up on the turf.
The New York Racing Association, Inc. will continue its New York Heritage and Tourism Series with Adirondack Day, presented by the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism. The event will take place at the Saratoga Pavilion, presented by Time Warner Cable News, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The day will highlight the unique history, culture and tourism attractions of the Adirondack region, which includes Lake Placid, home to the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympic Games. Guests will enjoy numerous activities, including log stamping, shoe making, basket weaving, and mountain bike demonstrations. The event will also include a craft beer tasting and samples of local food. Fans will have the opportunity to have their photo taken in an authentic bobsled and can experience the sights of the Adirondacks through virtual goggles. Live entertainment will be provided by local musician Brad Hester.
Stewart's Ice Cream Eating Contest:
Racing fans can take part in the annual Stewart's Shops Ice Cream Eating Contest. The competition will include categories for kids (6-12), teens (13-17) and adults (18+). The winners receive gift certificates for free Stewart's Shops ice cream. Registration begins at 11 a.m. on the Jockey Silks Room Porch. Contest takes place after the third race, approximately 2:10 p.m.
Mornings at Saratoga:
Fans are invited to enjoy breakfast on The Porch of the clubhouse while the thoroughbreds train on the main track. Breakfast is held from 7 to 9:30 a.m. and is available on a first-come, first-served basis. $17.95 for adults and $9.95 for kids 12 and under. Mornings at Saratoga also welcome fans to go behind the scenes with a free, guided backstretch tram tour. Tram tours begin at 7:30 a.m. and depart from the clubhouse entrance approximately every 15 minutes through 9 a.m. Tours are available on a first-come, first-served basis and are 45 minutes in length.
A new addition this year, the Bets Squad is available daily to educate fans about the basics of wagering. The Bets Squad is stationed in gazebos located in the upper grandstand and outside the paddock entrance and is also available for consultation in the NYRA Bets Lounge on Saturdays. Fans can schedule private sessions with Bets Squad members either in-person or online at NYRA.com/BetsSquad.
Fans can follow the action on Saratoga LIVE, the new racing program produced by NYRA TV, which is broadcast to an audience of more than 65 million viewers on Fox Sports 2 and MSG+ each day beginning at 4 p.m. Live coverage begins daily on Altitude Sports at 5 p.m. EST. The program includes a combination of racing coverage, analysis and feature items. For a complete broadcast schedule and local listings, visit NYRA.com.
Saratoga Season Perks:
All season pass and season ticket plan holders will receive discounts at most on-track concession stands, NYRA merchandise stores and Shake Shack on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays and the Artist's Village on Fridays. Discount does not apply to lottery, tobacco, alcohol, restaurant dining, group sales or Dunkin' Donuts. For a complete list of participating Saratoga Season Perks partners, visit SaratogaSeasonPerks.com.
Community Outreach Booth:
The Community Outreach Booth will host the Racing City Chorus, an all men's barbershop-style singing group from Saratoga Springs that is dedicated to preserving and promoting the art of barbershop style music for its members and future generations.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 25
New York Turf Writers Cup:
The day's feature race is the Grade 1, $150,000 New York Turf Writers Cup, a steeplechase race for 4-year-olds and up. The day will also be anchored by the $100,000 Riskaverse for 3-year-old fillies on the turf.
Taste NY: Cider, Wine & Spirits:
Taste NY: Cider, Wine & Spirits offers guests a selection of cider, wine and spirits available for sampling each Thursday of the meet in partnership with the New York Department of Agriculture and Markets. Fans will be able to sample five varietals for $5 at the Saratoga Pavilion, presented by Time Warner Cable News, from noon to 5 p.m.
Community Outreach Booth:
The Community Outreach Booth will host Gallop NYC, a non-profit organization from New York City that offers therapeutic horsemanship programs to children and adults with disabilities.
"At the Post Live: Serling on Saratoga":
NYRA TV broadcast analyst and nationally recognized thoroughbred racing personality Andy Serling hosts this live broadcast on ESPN Radio 104.5 "The Team" at The Parting Glass in downtown Saratoga Springs from 8 to 9 p.m. At the Post Live is presented by NYRA Bets.
Tequila Avion & Tacos Thursdays at The Post:
Racing fans are invited to continue their day at Saratoga with Tequila Avion & Tacos at The Post, the lively bar and entertainment spot adjacent to the paddock. Each Thursday of the meet will feature Latin music, dancing, and food and drink specials at The Post following the day's final race.
Fourstardave Sports Bar:
Fans are invited to watch live simulcast racing at the Fourstardave Sports Bar, which will remain open to the public following the last race on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays until 7 p.m.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 26
New York Showcase Day:
Travers Eve will be dedicated to New York-breds during New York Showcase Day at Saratoga Race Course. The popular state-bred card will include six stakes, highlighted by the $250,000 Albany for 3-year-olds going 1 1/8 miles.
Red Jacket Ceremony:
The day will be highlighted by the induction of prominent owner Cot Campbell of Dogwood Stables and three-time Eclipse Award-winning trainer Bill Mott into the Saratoga Walk of Fame during the annual Red Jacket Ceremony. The ceremony will take place adjacent to the Winner's Circle following the day's fourth race at approximately 2:50 p.m. During the event, both inductees will receive an emblematic Saratoga red jacket and their plaques will be formally unveiled to the public. The Saratoga Walk of Fame honors and showcases the achievements of those who have made significant contributions to the sport of thoroughbred racing and to the advancement of Saratoga Race Course.
Taste NY: Craft Beer:
This weekly event offers guests a selection of New York craft beers available for sampling in partnership with the New York Department of Agriculture and Markets. Fans will be able to sample five craft beers for $5 at the Saratoga Pavilion, presented by Time Warner Cable News, from noon to 5 p.m.
Community Outreach Booth:
NYRA will host a food drive to benefit the Saratoga County Economic Opportunity Council (EOC) at the Community Outreach Booth. Guests who donate three canned or non-perishable items will receive a free Saratoga collectible. Suggested donation items include shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, pasta, peanut butter, cereal, rice, soup and canned vegetables. The Saratoga County EOC is a non-profit organization committed to being a leader in advocating for opportunities and developing solutions to promote healthy, thriving families and caring community partners.
Woodford Reserve Fridays at The Post:
Racing fans are invited to continue their day at Saratoga with Woodford Reserve Fridays at The Post, the lively bar and entertainment spot adjacent to the paddock. Each Friday of the meet will feature a DJ, dancing, trivia contests and cocktail sampling at The Post following the day's final race.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 27 - TRAVERS DAY
Saratoga's most anticipated race - the Grade 1, $1.25 million Travers - will return for its 147th running as the feature of a blockbuster card. This year's Travers Day will feature five other Grade 1 stakes: the $1 million Longines Sword Dancer Invitational at 1 ½ miles on the turf, the $500,000 Ballerina for filly and mare sprinters, the $700,000 Priority One Jets Forego at seven furlongs, the $750,000 Ketel One King's Bishop and the $750,000 Personal Ensign for fillies and mares going 1 1/8 miles. Rounding out the card is the Grade 2, $400,000 Woodford Reserve Ballston Spa for turf fillies and mares.
Gates open at 7 a.m. on Travers Day, with a special first post time of 11:35 a.m. There is no breakfast on the clubhouse porch and no backstretch tram tours. There are no clubhouse upgrades on Travers Day.
All guests are subject to enhanced screening upon entering the grounds and will not be permitted to run once inside the property for their safety. This policy will be strictly enforced. There is a strict limit of one table per person that may be reserved in the backyard. Selling picnic tables is not allowed and will result in expulsion from track grounds. Only personal-sized coolers (12x18) will be allowed on the apron. Fans planning to attend the Travers can review a full list of prohibited and permitted items at NYRA.com/Travers. No storage will be provided for patrons arriving or attempting to enter the venue with prohibited items.
Meet & Greet with Tom Durkin:
Fans will have the opportunity to take part in a special meet and greet and autograph signing with retired race announcer Tom Durkin, presented by Foxwoods Resort Casino, from noon to 2 p.m. at the Durkin Replay Center inside the Fourstardave Sports Bar. Advance tickets are required. Fans can pick up tickets at the Fourstardave Sports Bar on Saturday from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. The first 150 guests with tickets are guaranteed the opportunity to meet Durkin and have one souvenir item signed. A limited number of free posters will be available. The Tom Durkin Replay Center allows guests the opportunity to view and hear 24 classic calls by the former track announcer, who retired in 2014 following a 24-year career as the voice of NYRA.
NYRA Bets Lounge:
Fans are invited to visit the NYRA Bets Lounge in the Saratoga Pavilion, presented by Time Warner Cable News. The NYRA Bets Lounge will offer handicapping tips and analysis from racing professionals and also features a full-service bar and Lifestyles clothing boutique. A handicapping seminar will occur from 11 a.m. to noon with Matt Bernier and Peter Fornatale.
Community Outreach Booth:
The Community Outreach Booth will host the Backstretch Employee Service Team, a non-profit organization which aids the hard-working men and women employed to take care of the horses in the barn area.
Ketel One Party at The Post:
The fun will continue each Saturday of the season with the Ketel One Party at The Post, the lively bar and entertainment spot adjacent to the paddock. Each Saturday of the meet will feature a DJ, trivia contests and prizes at The Post following the day's final race.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 28
Smart N Fancy:
The day's feature race is the $100,000 Smart N Fancy for 3-year-old and up fillies and mares on the turf.
Taste NY: Food and Artisans:
Taste NY: Food & Artisans is a lively on-track market filled with vendors featuring products made exclusively in New York State. Products include jams, baked goods and hand-crafted soap, amongst other items. The market is held each Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Saratoga Pavilion, presented by Time Warner Cable News.
Low Roller Challenge:
Sunday will include the Low Roller Challenge, presented by NYRA Bets, which allows aspiring handicappers the opportunity to experience the thrill of tournament play for $40, with $30 going towards live bankroll and $10 to the prize pool. Registration begins at 11 a.m. near the Fourstardave Sports Bar.
Community Outreach Booth:
The Community Outreach Booth will host Team in Training, the flagship fundraising program for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society which leads the way to cures through corporate and community participation. Also represented will be the Saratoga Springs Synchronized Skating Program, which is dedicated to advancing the sport of synchronized skating by developing teamwork and sportsmanship of younger skating athletes.
MONDAY, AUGUST 29
Better Talk Now:
The day's feature is for 3-year-olds at a mile on the turf for a purse of $100,000.
Fan Appreciation Week:
NYRA will thank its fans for another memorable Saratoga season with a series of discounts and special offers, including a BBQ in the At the Rail Pavilion daily from Wednesday, Aug. 31 through Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 5. The BBQ is $45 for adults and $35 for kids (12 and under) and includes admission, program book and buffet lunch. The buffet will feature menu items inspired by some of the region's most popular restaurateurs.
Fans will also enjoy a 20 percent discount on grandstand reserved seats when using the promo code TOGA20, valid weekdays through Labor Day. Offer available at Ticketmaster.com and not valid on previously purchased tickets.
The final two Mondays of the meet (Aug. 29 and Sept. 5) will feature the special offer of a Family Monday 4-Pack featuring four grandstand reserved seats (includes admission); four hotdogs and four sodas for $44. The package is available for purchase by calling 1-844-NYRA-TIX.
Berkshire Bank Family Mondays Back to School Backpack Giveaway:
Monday is highlighted by Berkshire Bank Family Mondays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Saratoga Pavilion, presented by Time Warner Cable News. The first 500 kids, ages 12 and under, to visit the Pavilion will receive a free drawstring bag filled with school supplies, courtesy of Berkshire Bank and Pediatric Dental Group of New York.
All kid-friendly games and activities, including the opportunity to pet a retired thoroughbred, are free of charge, with the exception of one designated activity which carries a suggested donation to benefit a local school or PTA. The beneficiary of the sixth Monday of the season is Saratoga Academy of Saratoga Springs. Fans are also invited to play a special edition of Pokemon Go while exploring various track landmarks during the event.
Low Roller Challenge:
Monday will include the continuation of the Low Roller Challenge, presented by NYRA Bets, which allows aspiring handicappers the opportunity to experience the thrill of tournament play for $40, with $30 going towards live bankroll and $10 to the prize pool. Registration begins at 11 a.m. near the Fourstardave Sports Bar.
Community Outreach Booth:
The Community Outreach Booth will host Hope Soars, a non-profit organization dedicated to being a positive voice for the Parkinson's community while working tirelessly towards a cure for Parkinson's disease.
All events and activities are subject to change at the discretion of the New York Racing Association. Go to www.nyra.com for more information.