This year's Arlington Million Week is turning into one for the ages.
All ages, that is.
Arlington Park officials announced Saturday that five retired jockey greats will return to the saddle and square off against five of the top riders in the Arlington standings in a "Young Guns" vs. "Cagey Veterans" turf race Friday, Aug. 20 - one day before the 28th running of the Arlington Million.
Slated to take a one-day break from retirement are Hall-of-Fame jockeys Earlie Fires and Gary Stevens; two-time Arlington Park champion Mark Guidry; Patti Cooksey, who participated in the Female Legends race earlier this year, and 1977 Triple Crown-winning jockey Jean Cruguet.
The top four male riders and the leading female rider in the Arlington standings at the conclusion of racing on Saturday, Aug. 14, will represent the current jockey colony.
The top four riders in the Arlington standings are currently Junior Alvarado, Michael Baze, James Graham and Jesus Castanon, and the leading female jockey is Inez Karlsson.
In addition to regular win, place, show, exacta, trifecta and superfecta betting available on the race, Arlington will offer a wager pitting the young guns vs. cagey veterans in a head-to-head format based on a point structure.
'Dynasty' returns: The five former riders, aka the Cagey Veterans, will be at Arlington as part of the day's second annual "Dining With The Dynasty" fund-raiser, a charity event that brings legendary jockeys from all over the country to raise funds to benefit the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund and the Racetrack Chaplaincy of America.
This year's event will provide ticket purchasers with a unique chance to dine and share stories with legendary jockeys. In addition to the five listed above, scheduled to appear are Hall of Famers Jerry Bailey, Pat Day, Laffit Pincay Jr., 2010 inductee Randy Romero, John Rotz and Ron Turcotte; plus Bill Boland, Jackie Fires and Ray Sibille.
Ticketholders will spend an afternoon in Arlington's brand new Longshots Sports Bar with the legendary jockeys. Sportscaster Howard Sudberry and Daily Herald handicapper Joe Kristufek will host the event.
Tickets are on sale at arlingtonpark.com and the Arlington Park box office.
In addition to "Dining With The Dynasty", many of the riders will appear at Breakfast at Arlington from 8-9:30 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 20, and will participate in a public autograph session from 12:30-1:30 p.m. on Million Day on Aug. 21.