For the third straight year, Monmouth Park offers a $1 million bonus to the connections of any horse who sweeps three of the biggest races remaining on the 2022 racing calendar.
All you have to do is win the Grade 1 Haskell Stakes, the Grade 1 Travers Stakes and the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Classic. That’s all.
The Haskell, Monmouth Park’s flagship race, is July 23. The Travers, one of Saratoga’s two marquee races – along with the Whitney – is Aug. 27. The Breeders’ Cup Classic is Nov. 5 at Keeneland.
It’s a daunting task, especially with the 3-year-old class as wide open as it is. Given the Haskell and Travers is limited to 3-year-olds, this limits the potential bonus winners to sophomores. But when you factor in older, Classic-bound horses like standout Flightline and Life Is Good, the odds of collecting this bonus increase significantly.
Winning this bonus means getting through Flightline
Flightline is considered America’s top Throughbred. The 4-year-old Tapit colt is 4-for-4 after his six-length Metropolitan Handicap victory on the Belmont Stakes undercard. He looms large in any Breeders’ Cup Classic discussion. Life Is Good, who runs next weekend in the Grade 2 John A. Nerud Stakes at Belmont Park, isn’t far behind.
Most of the upper tier of the 3-year-old class you saw at the Kentucky Derby: winner Rich Strike, runner-up Epicenter, Zandon, and Belmont Stakes winner Mo Donegal, as well as Preakness Stakes winner Early Voting – who skipped the Derby – are expected for either the Haskell, Travers or both. Trainer Brad Cox said he plans running Arkansas Derby winner Cyberknife in the Haskell.
Cyberknife rebounded well from his 18th-place Derby finish to win the Grade 3 Matt Winn at Churchill Downs earlier this month.
Monmouth Park has paid this before
That’s not to say the bonus is inaccessible. Two years ago, Authentic collected it, after he won the Haskell, Kentucky Derby and Breeders’ Cup Classic. That year, the Kentucky Derby was held Sept. 5, due to the pandemic.
Monmouth Park teamed with BetMakers to sponsor the bonus. The Australian-based BetMakers partnered with Monmouth Park to bring fixed odds to American wagering. Monmouth Park is the only major track in the US offering fixed odds wagering.
“It’s great to continue to support creative initiatives from Monmouth Park as Monmouth Park continues to innovate in the racing space,” Dallas Baker, the head of international operations for BetMakers, said in a statement. “Hopefully, we can see the bonus handed out again, just like when Authentic earned it.”