Laurel Park
Racing at Laurel Park without fans. Photo by Allison Janezic.

Laurel Park will offer seven stakes worth $750,000 in purses, including automatic qualifiers for the Preakness Stakes (G1) and Black-Eyed Susan (G2), Saturday, April 17 as part of its upcoming spring meet.

The 19-day spring meet opens Thursday, April 1 and runs through Sunday, May 2, serving as a bridge between Laurel’s ongoing winter meet, which began Jan. 1, and the Preakness Meet at historic Pimlico Race Course.

Racing will be conducted Thursday through Sunday during the spring meet, with the exception of Easter Sunday, April 4. Post time will be 12:40 p.m. with a special 12:15 p.m. post on Kentucky Derby day, Saturday, May 1.

Co-headlining the stakes program are the $125,000 Federico Tesio for 3-year-olds going 1 1/8 miles and the $125,000 Weber City Miss for 3-year-old fillies at about 1 1/16 miles. The Tesio serves as a ‘Win and In’ qualifier for Triple Crown-nominated horses to the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown, the 146th Preakness May 15, and the Weber City Miss is a ‘Win and In’ event for the 97th Black-Eyed Susan May 14.

Last year’s Tesio winner, Wertheimer and Frere’s homebred Happy Saver, went on to win the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) against older horses in his subsequent start to complete a perfect 4-0 sophomore campaign.

Sprinters 3 and up will go six furlongs in the $100,000 Primonetta for females and seven furlongs in the $100,000 Frank Y. Whiteley. Laurel’s world-class turf course is scheduled to host its first stakes of the season – the $100,000 Dahlia for fillies and mares 3 and older and $100,000 Henry S. Clark for 3-year-olds and up, both going one mile, and the $100,000 King T. Leatherbury for 3-year-olds and up sprinting five furlongs.

Live racing returns to Laurel Park with an eight-race program Friday, March 5. The winter meet runs Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through Sunday, March 28.