Belmont Stakes & Bag of Donuts
June 8, 2024
Feb 14, 2021


Boosts for Both Dirt and Turf Overnight Races Will Begin on Wednesday, February 17

HOUSTON, TX - Sam Houston Race Park is pleased to announce that overnight purses have been increased for the remainder of the 2021 Thoroughbred Horse meet. The adjustment will be implemented on Wednesday, February 17 and will continue through the conclusion of the racing season on April 3.


All main track overnight purses will be increased by $7,000 and turf purses will be boosted by $2,000. The increases reflect the strong start of the current meet in which Sam Houston Race Park has seen a handle increase of 40%. This was bolstered by a record-setting handle of $5.3 million on its Houston Racing Festival card, which took place on January 31. 


Frank Hopf, Sam Houston Race Park’s Senior Director of Racing Operations, credits the support of horsemen as well the nation’s horseplayers, who enjoy the industry-low takeout of 12% on multi-race wagers.


“This increase would not be possible without the ongoing support from our horsemen,” said Hopf. “We welcomed back a solid number of barns and received stall applications from many new outfits this year. Additionally, we had tremendous interest from nationally prominent trainers for our six Houston Racing Festival stakes. Racing fans continue to respond to our racing product and comprehensive wagering menu.”

There will be no changes to the stakes schedule, which offers $2.4 million in purses, up from $1.8 million in 2020. Texas Preview Night is set for Saturday, February 20 with six stakes for Texas-breds. On Texas Champions Day, which will take place on March 20, all seven stakes races on Texas Champions Day have been increased from $75,000 to $100,000.


The 46-day Thoroughbred season, which began on January 8 will conclude on April 3 with live racing each Wednesday and Thursday at 4:00 pm (CT) and Friday and Saturday night card beginning at 6:45 pm.


Sam Houston Race Park is Houston’s premier racing and entertainment facility, located just 15 miles from downtown Houston.  The Park offers a variety of attractions including a Suite Level featuring luxurious suites overlooking the racetrack, The Pavilion Centre, and award-winning dining options at the Winner’s Circle Restaurant and the Jockey Club.  For more information on upcoming live racing, shows, events and tickets, please visit