The Jockey Club of Canada’s Graded Stakes Committee held its annual review of the Graded and Listed stakes races in Canada and determined that the number of Graded stakes in Canada will increase by two to 42. The jump is due to the return of the GI Canadian International and the upgrade of one Listed race to Grade III status. No graded stakes races were downgraded.
The Committee reviewed the North American Race Committee (NARC) figures and the Race Quality Scores (RQS) for all graded, listed, and potentially listed races in Canada. Last year was the first year since 2019 that restricted movement of horses and humans did not hamper field size and, ultimately, race quality. Most races achieved as good or better scores in 2022 and their status was secure. A few races were granted concessions for their slow recovery based on their superior historical references and acceptable current numerical evaluations.
After reviewing the NARC figures and the RQS numbers for all Listed and black-type races in Canada, the Committee determined that the G3 Seagram Cup S. will be upgraded to Grade II status and the formerly Listed Belle Mahone S. will be upgraded to Grade III status. Additionally, the Niagara Stakes, Ontario Damsel Stakes, Ontario Racing Stakes, and Woodbine Cares Stakes will be upgraded to Listed status.