Parx Racing a Special American Track

Category : News - Thu 04/07/2013 - 14:22 EDT

Often referred to as ‘The Home of Smarty Jones”, Parx Racing outside of Philadelphia, PA is one of the most unique thoroughbred racing tracks in the United States. It’s one of the only tracks to offer year-around live racing, it’s the only track outside of the Breeders’ Cup events to host two $1,000,000 races on the same day, and it was one of the first tracks to offer a direct way to wager from the comfort of your home when it launched its ‘Phonebet’ service in the late 1980s.

Lots of live action and major stakes

Racing at Parx kicks off on January 1 of each year and continues to December 31, with the ponies running every Saturday through Tuesday, with a couple of special Friday dates thrown into the mix. The highlight of the racing calendar comes each September, with the running of the Grade II Pennsylvania Derby and the Grade I Fitz Dixon Cotillion Handicap. Both races are considered to be two of the final major prep events for horses aiming for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.

Smarty Jones puts Parx on the map

In 2004, Parx Racing received boost in stature with the success of Smarty Jones, a Pennsylvania-bred colt who called the track home. Undefeated to that point in his career, he captured the attention of the entire sporting world in winning the first two legs of the Triple Crown in spectacular fashion.  With journeyman jockey Stewart Elliot, he went into the Belmont Stakes as the most popular Triple Crown contender in years, with ‘Smarty Parties’ being held around the country. Unfortunately, the grueling Belmont proved too much and he finished second, passed in deep stretch by long-shot Mine That Bird.

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