A horse and jockey head for the track at Del Mar.

Del Mar’s fall racing meet – named the “Bing Crosby Season” in honor of the Hollywood icon who founded the track – begins its four-week run Friday.

Races will take place over 13 days through Dec. 4, primarily on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays with a daily first post of 12:30 p.m.

But enjoy the holiday exception, on Thanksgiving, Nov. 24, when racing at the Del Mar track starts at 11 a.m. and finish around 3 p.m., allowing plenty of time for turkey dinner too.

Del Mar is coming off its most successful meeting ever in summer 2022, when the track established a record daily average handle of $18.6 million and an average field size of 9.1 horses per race, best among all major tracks in the nation.

Opening weekend will feature a trio of stakes, starting Friday with the $75,000 Let It Ride overnight stakes for 3-year-olds at a mile on the turf.

The fall session’s full stakes schedule – 13 major stakes and two overnight over the 13 days – is the most lucrative ever, at a total of $2.45 million.

The slate is highlighted by a pair of $400,000 Grade I headliners on the closing weekend, the Hollywood Derby for 3-year-olds at nine furlongs on turf, and the Matriarch Stakes for older fillies and mares at a mile on the lawn.

Del Mar will offer a variety of special events as well – a Veterans Day salute on opening day, an “Uncorked: Derby Days Wine Festival” on Saturday, “Brunch & Brews” and College Day (with free admission for college students), both on Nov. 19, and a Taste of the Turf Club program each Sunday.

Daily general admission costs $6 with grandstand options available as well. Seniors receive free admission, a program and a seat each Friday throughout the fall.

The track will offer a menu of betting options, starting with win, place and show wagers. The series of “exotic,” or multiple bets, includes Pick 3s, Pick 4s, Pick 5s and the popular ‘Rainbow Pick Six.’ That bet costs 20¢ and can lead to five-, six- or seven-figure payouts.



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Ellen Bullock