Since 1939, Gulfstream Park has been one of the most important venues for horse racing in the country, opening on Wednesday February 1, 1939. In 1952 the clubhouse was erected and a new addition was put on the grandstand. 1952 also marked the first running of the Florida Derby. The following year, the Florida Derby became the first stakes in Florida with a $100,000 purse.
In 1959, a new era at Gulfstream began with the opening of its world-acclaimed turf course. It also marked the construction of what was then the world's largest tote board.
Gulfstream hosted its first Breeders' Cup World Championships in 1989, highlighted by the Classic match-up between Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Sunday Silence and Belmont Stakes winner Easy Goer.
The track was purchased by Magna Entertainment Corporation, in 1999 and is currently owned by The Stronach Group.
The current dirt course is one and one-eighth miles in circumference, with a one-mile backstretch chute. The turf course is one mile in circumference; depending on the race day, the portable rail can be moved to the inside or outside of the course, thereby changing the circumference. The track can seat 16,627 people.
The track originally had a one-mile dirt oval and a 7 furlong turf oval prior to the 2005 renovation.
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