Saratoga Stakes Schedule’s Key Races And Dates

Written By Fairway Jay on July 22, 2021 - Last Updated on July 27, 2021
The 2021 Saratoga schedule includes 20 Grade 1 races for the summer meet. The Travers headlines one of the biggest days of racing, Aug 28.

Saratoga’s 40-day meet is entering its second weekend and runs through Labor Day on Sept. 6. Live odds for every race are available at TVG, and the Saratoga stakes schedule at “The Spa” is one to look forward to each summer.

There are 20 Grade 1 races at Saratoga, and two close out the month of July.

  • July 24: $500,000 Coaching Club American Oaks for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles
  • July 31: $500,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap for 3-year-olds and up at 6 furlongs

Also on July 31 is the $600,000 Grade II Jim Dandy for some of the top 3-year-olds going 1 1/8 miles, including Belmont Stakes winner Essential Quality.


Key Races and Dates on the Saratoga Stakes Schedule

The $1.25 million Grade I Travers headlines the Aug. 28 card that features eight graded stakes, including seven Grade I races with three “Win and You’re In” Breeders’ Cup qualifying races. Early commitments for the Travers include Essential Quality and Mandaloun, who recently won a photo finish in the TVG Haskell Stakes through disqualification.

The August and September Saratoga stakes schedule is loaded. Races of most interest include those on the biggest race dates of Aug. 7 for Whitney Day, Aug. 28 for Travers Day and Sept. 4 with two Grade 1 races that are also Breeders’ Cup qualifying races (BC).

  • Aug. 7: $500,000 Longines Test for 3-year-old fillies at 7 furlongs
  • Aug. 7: $1 million Whitney (BC) for older horses at 1 1/8 miles
  • Aug. 7: $1 million Saratoga Derby Invitational for 3-year-olds on the turf at 1 3/16 miles
  • Aug. 14: $500,000 Fourstardave Handicap (BC) for 3-year-olds and up on the turf at 1 mile
  • Aug. 21: $600,000 Alabama for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/4 miles
  • Aug. 28: $600,000 Forgo for older horses at 7 furlongs
  • Aug. 28: $500,000 H. Allen Jerkens Memorial for 3-year-olds at 7 furlongs
  • Aug. 28: $500,000 Ketel One Bellerina (BC) for fillies and mares at 7 furlongs
  • Aug. 28: $600,000 Personal Ensign (BC) for older fillies and mares
  • Aug. 28: $750,000 Resorts World Casino Sword Dancer (BC) for older horses on the turf at 1 1/2 miles
  • Aug. 28: $1.25 million Travers for 3-year-olds at 1 1/4 miles
  • Sept. 4: $600,000 Flower Bowl (BC) for older fillies and mares on the turf at 1 3/16 miles
  • Sept. 4: $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup (BC) for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/4 miles
  • Sept. 6: $300,000 Hopeful for 2-year-olds at 7 furlongs


There are a total of seven major stakes races at Saratoga that are also “Win and You’re In” Breeders’ Cup qualifying races.

The significance of the Whitney is that the winner also gets an automatic fees-paid invitation to the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic on Nov. 6 at Del Mar. That’s part of the “Win and You’re In” Challenge Series awarding automatic fees-paid entries to winners of selected major stakes races.

The Whitney is for older horses, and the early entries list is loaded, with Preakness-winning filly Swiss Skydiver and Suburban Stakes winner and Breeders’ Cup Classic qualifier Maxfield. Also, Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile winner and Pegasus World Cup winner Knicks Go is possible for the Whitney, along with Jockey Club Gold Cup winner Code of Honor.

This year’s $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup is the final Breeders’ Cup Challenge series race at Saratoga and sends the winner to the 1 1/4-mile Breeders’ Cup Classic, which was won last year by Kentucky Derby winner Authentic.

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Fairway Jay

FairwayJay is a leading national sports and betting analyst and provides insight and information you can bet on to engage and assist the avid fan. His tee-to-green coverage and racing contributions have been provided to Churchill Downs, Twinspires, TVG, Forbes, TheLines, numberFire and PlayUSA platforms. Follow on Twitter: @FairwayJay

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