Santa Anita Park
Santa Anita Park is a California horse racing landmark located in Arcadia, in the outskirts of Los Angeles. Santa Anita race track opens annually on December 26, with daily racing continuing through late April. The track also has a fall meeting that is presented by the Oak Tree Racing Association, and this takes place each year from early October thru early November.
Santa Anita Park occupies approximately 320 acres. Its landmark, a 1,100-foot-long Grandstand seats 26,000 guests. The giant Infield area accommodates many thousands more. Behind the scenes are 61 barns, capable of housing more than 2,000 horses and a complete equine hospital.
The track opened its doors for the first time on December 25, 1934. Opening day attendance was placed at 30,777. The inaugural running of the famed Santa Anita Handicap took place on February 23, 1935. It was the nation's first $100,000 race, a staggering purse for a horse race, and that put Santa Anita on the horse racing map. The track was home to the legendary horse Seabiscuit, the winner of the 1940 Santa Anita Handicap.
Racing halted in 1942 during World War II but resumed in 1945. In 1984, the track was the site of the arena equestrian events of the Summer Olympics and more than 200,000 people attended the events. On March 3, 1985, the all-time single-day attendance record was achieved when 85,527 people attended the Santa Anita Handicap.
Other notable track records are the following:
- $36,264,799 Santa Anita record for total amount bet in a single day (Nov. 6, 1993)
- $27,200,000 Amount of money Santa Anita Foundation has contributed to various charitable / benevolent organizations since 1934.
- 120,000,000 Approximate number of people that have passed through the doors of Santa Anita since Opening Day 1934.
- $43,595,744,634 Total money wagered by Santa Anita patrons since Opening Day 1934.
Santa Anita race track hosts some of the most prominent stakes events including the San Pasqual Handicap, Monrovia Handicap, Santa Ysabel Stakes, Santa Catalina Stakes and many more.