Thoroughbred horse racing is a popular sport in Florida, and the state is home to some of the most prestigious racetracks in the country. Gulfstream Park, located in Hallandale Beach, is one of the most well-known tracks in Florida and hosts a number of major races, including the Florida Derby and the Pegasus World Cup. Other notable tracks in Florida include Tampa Bay Downs, Hialeah Park, and Payson Park.
Thoroughbred horse racing in Florida is regulated by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. The department is responsible for licensing racetracks, trainers, and jockeys, and for enforcing racing rules and regulations.
The racing season in Florida typically runs from November to May. During the season, there are races held almost every day at the state's racetracks. The races are open to the public, and spectators can watch the action from the grandstand or from the trackside.
Thoroughbred horse racing is a major economic driver in Florida. The industry generates millions of dollars in revenue each year, and it supports thousands of jobs. The sport also contributes to the state's tourism industry, as people from all over the country come to Florida to watch the races.
Here are some of the most popular thoroughbred horse races in Florida:
- Florida Derby: The Florida Derby is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbreds. It is run at Gulfstream Park on the first Saturday in March, and it is one of the most important prep races for the Kentucky Derby.
- Pegasus World Cup: The Pegasus World Cup is a Grade I stakes race for four-year-old and up Thoroughbreds. It is run at Gulfstream Park on the first Saturday in January, and it is the richest horse race in North America.
- Florida Oaks: The Florida Oaks is a Grade II stakes race for three-year-old fillies. It is run at Gulfstream Park on the same day as the Florida Derby, and it is one of the most important prep races for the Kentucky Oaks.
- Hialeah Park Handicap: The Hialeah Park Handicap is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old and up Thoroughbreds. It is run at Hialeah Park on the first Saturday in February, and it is one of the most important prep races for the Florida Derby.
- Tampa Bay Derby: The Tampa Bay Derby is a Grade II stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbreds. It is run at Tampa Bay Downs on the first Saturday in April, and it is one of the most important prep races for the Kentucky Derby.
If you are interested in watching thoroughbred horse racing in Florida, there are a number of tracks that you can visit. Gulfstream Park, Tampa Bay Downs, and Hialeah Park are all popular destinations for horse racing fans. You can also find live racing at a number of smaller tracks throughout the state.