After stuffing your face with turkey this upcoming Thanksgiving, what better way to end the holiday than the 2021 Thanksgiving Weekend Stakes?
Laurel Park again plays host to the two-day horse racing event.
Next Friday and Saturday, Nov. 26-27, is the Thanksgiving Weekend Stakes. As part of the event in the city of Laurel, five stakes races worth $450,000 in purses are scheduled for the weekend.
This jam-packed weekend has attracted 114 nominations to the holiday event at the historic American thoroughbred racetrack.
Here’s a rundown of all of the action.
Friday, Nov. 26: Thanksgiving Weekend Stakes, Day 1
The 2021 Thanksgiving Weekend Stakes kicks off on Friday, Nov. 26.
The day features a pair of $75,000 events for Maryland-bred/sire horses:
- Howard and Sondra Bender Memorial for 3-year olds sprinting seven furlongs (7/8 mile)
- Politely for fillies and mares 3+ sprinting six furlongs (3/4 mile)
Saturday, Nov. 26: Thanksgiving Weekend Stakes, Day 2
The second day of action at Laurel Park will feature three $100,000 stakes races:
- City of Laurel for 3-year-olds (7/8 mile)
- Safely Kept for 3-year-old fillies both sprinting seven furlongs (7/8 mile)
- Richard W. Small for 3-year-olds and up sprinting nine furlongs (1 1/8 miles)
Horse Betting 101
So, if you’re new to horse betting, there are a few things you should know before heading to Laurel Park next weekend.
Below you’ll find a full breakdown of the various bet types, how to place a bet and where you can place a wager.
Picking a bet type
There are many types of bets in horse racing. For the novice bettor, those options range from easy to difficult – both to understand and to win.
The Laurel Park website actually has a pretty nifty guide to horse betting. That’s a good place to start to learn about your wagering options. Sure, they have the usual win/place/show options, but you can also try a superfecta, double, Pick 6 or other type of bet.
Also, when placing a bet, remember that the track and betting windows always refer to a horse by its number, not its name.
How to place a bet
For next weekend’s events, you can place your bet with a teller at Laurel Park. If you can’t make it to the race, though, you can also place a bet at an OTB or racebook.
When placing your bet, it should be in this format:
- Race track name and race number
- The dollar amount of your wager
- The type of bet (win, place, show, etc.)
- The official number(s) of your horse(s)
For example, this would be how to phrase a very typical bet:
“Laurel Park, Race 2, $5 to win on #12.”
How to attend Thanksgiving Weekend Stakes in Laurel
Laurel Park is offering free general admission and on-site parking for the 2021 Thanksgiving Weekend Stakes.
While admission is first-come, first-served, officials said they don’t expect this event to reach max capacity.
Post time is 12:25 p.m. for the first race of each day.