Published Monday, April 15th, 2024   ( 1 month ago )

Del Mar Racetrack Gears Up for Thrilling 85th Summer Racing Season

The nation’s premier seaside horse racing venue kicks off its summer racing season on Saturday, July 20 with tickets available starting on May 10

DEL MAR, Calif. (April 15, 2024) – On the heels of a triumphant year of racing in 2023, the esteemed and industry-leading Del Mar Thoroughbred Club looks forward to its 85th summer racing season at the iconic seaside oval. The highly anticipated 2024 summer racing season will feature among the nation’s highest prize money for horse owners, trainers and jockeys and the most robust lineup of trackside events in recent years. Del Mar’s famed Opening Day presented by Caesars Sportsbook will take place on Saturday, July 20, allowing guests to embark on a weekend of festivities in true Southern California fashion.

This year marks a historic shift, as Opening Day at Del Mar – one of San Diego’s most beloved summertime traditions – will be held on a Saturday for the first time since the 1950s. The scheduling adjustment, due to the San Diego County Fair running through July 7, affords Del Mar the necessary time to implement its industry-leading equine safety protocols. Embracing the spirit of tradition, track goers can look forward to the fanfare and excitement that Opening Day brings each year to carry through the entire Opening Weekend of racing at Del Mar.

From the Openings Day Hats Contest and Opening Day Party to Del Mar Beer Fest on Sunday, July 21 and more – all alongside a weekend full of exhilarating racing and wagering. Tickets for Opening Weekend and the 2024 summer racing season go on sale Friday, May 10 at 10 a.m. PST. As in recent years, Del Mar will be limiting General Admission attendance for a more intimate and elevated Opening Day experience, and tickets are anticipated to sell out. The 2024 summer racing season will run through Sunday, September 8.

Alongside world-class racing, fans can look forward to an exhilarating lineup of trackside events with excitement taking place nearly every weekend. From showcases of San Diego’s best food and beverages, to live music, entertainment and more, there’s something for every attendee to enjoy. Del Mar’s 2024 trackside events include:

  • July 21 – Del Mar Beer Fest: Keep the Opening Weekend festivities going with samples of a variety of brews, ciders and seltzers.
  • August 3 – Uncorked Del Mar Wine Fest: An annual trackside tradition, enjoy samples of more than 150 wines from around the world and gourmet food from local San Diego vendors. 
  • August 10 – Tacos & Tequila: Enjoy samples of tequila, margaritas and cervezas paired with tacos from San Diego’s top vendors – presented by Espolòn Tequila. 
  • August 17 – Breeders’ Cup Tumbler Giveaway – In anticipation of the 2024 and 2025 Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Del Mar, racing fans will receive a 2024 Breeders’ Cup branded tumbler collectible item. Available for free with paid admission while supplies last. 
  • August 24 – Taste of New Orleans: The South meets the West in an epic celebration of New Orleans culture with Big Easy-inspired food, music and more – presented by Bacardi. 
  • September 1 – Family Fun Day: Families can enjoy free trackside attractions like face painting, kid-friendly games and more. 
  • September 7 – College Day: Students can present their valid student ID for free track admission and exclusive access to grandstand seating. 

Additionally, Del Mar offers a variety of weekly attractions including: 

  • Diamond Club Free & Easy Thursdays: Diamond Club members can enjoy free admission, seats and food and beverage specials. Learn more about the Diamond Club.
  • Turf Club Fridays: Purchase tickets for a high-end happy hour in the exclusive (normally members-only!) Turf Club every Friday.
  • Happy Hour Fridays: Enjoy half-off Del Mar’s signature drinks for a limited time. 
  • Taste of the Turf Club (Sundays): Another opportunity for non-Turf Club members to experience this exclusive area – feast on a locally-inspired brunch menu while imbibing on bottomless beverages and taking in one of the best views of the track).       

In addition to Opening Day and trackside events, Del Mar’s most anticipated race of the season, the FanDuel Racing Pacific Classic, will run on Saturday, August 31. This year’s Pacific Classic race brings even more excitement – as a Breeders’ Cup Classic win-and-you’re-in race, the winner can return to Del Mar this fall to compete in the World Championships of horse racing.

The highly-anticipated return of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships to Del Mar on Nov. 1 and 2, 2024, marks Del Mar’s third time hosting the prestigious “Super Bowl” of horse racing, followed by a consecutive hosting in 2025 for an exciting back-to-back experience for fans. Breeders’ Cup brings the world’s best Thoroughbreds, jockeys and trainers as well as thousands of fans from across the globe to San Diego. Tickets for the 2024 Breeders’ Cup World Championships go on sale on April 22.

The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club continues to be among the nation’s safest racetracks – recording zero racing fatalities in 2023 as reported by the Equine Injury Database (EID). As a leader in racetrack safety, Del Mar has established highly successful protocols for equine and human athletes that are considered the gold standard throughout the Thoroughbred racing industry.

Tickets for the summer racing season go on sale Friday, May 10 at 10 a.m. and can be purchased at 

ABOUT DEL MAR  Opened in 1937, San Diego’s iconic — and the nation’s only — seaside racetrack features the world’s top racehorses, trainers, and jockeys, as well as the best in fashion and classic California culture "where the turf meets the surf.” What began as a Hollywood hotspot in the era of the racetrack’s founder, Bing Crosby, is now one of America's foremost racetracks and a premier Southern California destination, as well as a national leader in racetrack safety.