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Six new US Grade 1 events for 2009

THE Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders' Association's American Graded Stakes Committee has announced its Graded race listing for 2009, andit includes six new Grade 1 events.

The most notable of these are the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint and the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile - both have been included on the Breeders' Cup cards as ungraded races for the past two years.

Further races to receive Grade 1 status include the Clement L. Hirsch Handicap over a mile and a half and the 7f Pat O'Brien Handicap, both of which are run at Del Mar; Belmont's 1m1f Jamaica Handicap and the Keeneland's 7f VineryMadison Stakes for four-year-olds and over.

The Suburban Handicap has lost its Grade 1 status and will be run as a Grade 2 event in 2009.

A further six races have been upgraded from Grade 3 to Grade 2 events including the Fayette Stakes and the two-year-old Nashua Stakes.

The only other Breeders' Cup race to receive a change in rank is the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf which is to be changed from an ungraded race to a Grade 2. The three new Breeders' Cup races which were added in 2008 have remained ungraded.

Two Grade 3 events have been lost - the Calder's Memorial Day Handicap which did not meet prize-money requirements of $100,000, and Gulfstream Park's Grade 3 Deputy Minister Handicap will not be run in 2009.





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