New Belmont Gold Cup and Belmont Oaks Races Test For Distance

Under the guidance of Martin Panza, the New York Racing Association is premiering two new distance races during Belmont Park's Spring/Summer meet. Panza, NYRA's new senior vice president of racing operations, is changing things up with the New York racing schedule.

As part of a reinvigorated Belmont Stakes weekend, the Belmont Gold Cup debuts on Friday, June 6, over 2 miles on the turf. The race is open to 4-year olds and up with a purse of $200,000. During a February 6 teleconference, Panza said that the race could be attractive to European as well as North American route horses.

On July 5, the first running of the Belmont Oaks will be contested by three-year old fillies over 1 3/16 miles on the turf. This new race is part of the Breeders' Cup Challenge series, qualifying and paying the way for the winner to run in the $2 million Filly & Mare Turf in the 2014 Breeders' Cup at Santa Anita. Currently, purse details for the Belmont Oaks have not been released.