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The British European Breeders’ Fund (British EBF) are supplementing prize money for British Flat racing by £750,000 between September and the end of 2020 – all of which will be available as enhancements above BHA minimum value.
With a return to a near normal race programme for the autumn and winter months, the British EBF are returning all contributions to pre-Covid 19 levels.
The largest monthly investment comes in September when over £400,000 will boost prize money levels. The news was welcomed across the industry with all races carrying EBF conditions being run between £1,000 and £25,000 above the minimum. Everything from Class 5 novice and maiden races to Listed contests and fillies’ handicaps will benefit. Of particular note are three races at the Doncaster St Leger meeting where three EBF races will be run at the agree pre-Covid 19 levels: the Carrie Red Fillies’ Nursery Handicap £50,000; the EBF Premier Fillies’ Handicap £30,000 and a brand new Class 2 two-year-old maiden event helps kick the meeting with a prize pot of £30,000.
Jon Pullin of ARC commented on the importance of British EBF money in being able to provide these higher value races: “ARC has a longstanding and positive relationship with the EBF, and we are delighted to once again welcome them to the St Leger Festival at Doncaster. Their contribution, combined with that which ARC are making, will ensure that prize money for the races to which they support will be run at the same level as previous years, along with the new Class 2 maiden for two year olds.”
The British EBF has been working closely with racecourses to ensure that 100% of EBF contributions are either match-funded or reflected above the minimum value of a race. As the resumption of racing has progressed, the effect this extra prize money has had is significant, with, in many cases, EBF races being the only ones to exceed minimum value on a card.
Charlie Parker, Racehorse Owners’ Association President, commented on the renewed British EBF investment: “On behalf of the ROA and the Horsemen’s Group, we welcome the announcement today from the British EBF that they will be supporting the revised fixture list from September to December this year with a contribution to prize money which will exceed £750,000. We have seen significant downward pressure on prize money since resumption so the work that the British EBF has done and today’s announcement is very good news for all horsemen.”
Throughout the resumption of racing project, the British EBF has been supporting as many races as possible within its remit. The team are already working on ideas for the 2021 flat programme with exciting initiatives aimed at providing higher value opportunities to support owners across the board.
Presentation of the RED MILLS Irish EBF Auction Series Final at the Punchestown Festival 2019 – The Final was won by Zero Ten, trained by Emmet Mullins, ridden by David Mullins and owned by Mrs. Mee. Patrick McCann/Racing Post 01.05.2019
Irish racing’s largest sponsor, Irish European Breeders’ Fund along with Connolly’s Red Mills have today announced a new date for the Red Mills Irish EBF Auction Hurdle Final, the popular final will now be run on Wednesday, October 28th at Punchestown racecourse.
The final, worth €65,000, will be open to all horses which ran in a qualifying auction hurdle race between August 2019 to March 2020 and have not won a Listed or Grade 1, 2 or 3 bumper or hurdle race. The final was originally scheduled to be run at the Punchestown Festival which was cancelled due to Covid-19. The 2019 final winner was Zero Ten, trained by Emmet Mullins who went on to win the Grade 3 Pierce Moloney Memorial Novice Chase at Thurles in March this year.
The 2020 and 2021 Red Mills Irish EBF Auction Hurdle Series will commence at Ballinrobe racecourse on Monday 10th August. It will be the first of 14 qualifying races that will run from August 2020 until March 2021 with the final scheduled for next year’s Punchestown Festival. Irish EBF are pleased to supplement the drop in prize-money, due to Covid-19 related cuts, and restore the value of each race to €20,000. The €5,000 Weatherbys/ITBA NH Fillies Bonus Scheme will remain in place for all races in the series. The conditions for the qualifying races specify that all horses must be EBF eligible and bought as an unraced three or four-year-old at a recognised National Hunt Store sale for €45,000/€30,000 or less, with weight allowances depending on the purchase price.
William Flood, Irish EBF Governor, said; “It is great to announce the rescheduling of the final and the resumption of the 2020/2021 series right before the start of the store sales in Ireland. It gives owners, trainers and vendors at the sales a lucrative series of races to target. The Irish EBF are working closely with HRI to ensure all National Hunt funds which were not distributed during the suspension of racing are re-allocated to National Hunt EBF races before the end of this year.”
Eric McNamara, trainer, said; “It is a wonderful series and it is great news to have the final back on the schedule and to have the next series starting in Ballinrobe, which is especially welcome in these times. Well done to Irish EBF for keeping the prize-money up for the series, and a big thank you goes to Connolly’s Red Mills for continuing to support the series. I have two horses already in mind for the final and there will be huge interest from trainers with eligible runners come October.”
Tom Mullins, trainer, said; “Barnaviddaun was second in two of his starts last season and won the final leg in Downpatrick, he was a €9,500 store and won nearly €20,000 prize-money in the series alone, which is great for his owners. He’s back in training after his summer break and it would be hard not to target the final with the prize-money on offer. I have always been a big fan of both the Foran Equine and RED MILLS Irish EBF Auction series and thankfully we have been lucky and won a number of races within both series.”
Gareth Connolly, Sales and Marketing Director at Connolly’s RED MILLS, said; “It has been a challenging few months for the industry and we have all had to adapt, we recognise and appreciate the effort being made by all to sustain the racing programme and we are proud to continue to support both the Foran Equine 2-year-old Auction Series and the RED MILLS Auction Hurdle Series. It is fantastic to be able to stage the RED MILLS Irish EBF Final at Punchestown, and with a significant prize-fund on offer, it presents a super opportunity for those horses that are qualified.”
For Further Information:
Nessa Joyce, Manager, Irish European Breeders’ Fund
The British European Breeders’ Fund (British EBF) are sponsoring a brand-new award at this year’s virtual TBA Flat Breeders’ Awards Evening. The European Breeders’ Fund Stallion Special Merit Award, developed by the trustees, celebrates a British based stallion who has made a significant impact during the previous flat season.
The British EBF has long supported prize money in racing, enabling over 500 flat races a year to be run above minimum value. The contributions that provide these valuable prize money enhancements are, in the main, made by stallions standing at stud in Great Britain. The European Breeders’ Fund Stallion Special Merit Award is a new avenue through which the British EBF thank domestic stallion owners and celebrate the achievements of their horses.
James McHale, British EBF trustee and selection committee member commented:
“The award was specifically designed not to be just another statistic driven accolade. It means stallions covering smaller numbers of mares, standing at lower fees and producing fantastic results despite having fewer runners can get the recognition they deserve for their achievements.
There are a huge number of sires in Great Britain that far out-perform their covering fee or sales average and given that “leading sire awards” tend to focus on winners or prize money totals, meaning horses with the highest number of runners in any one season are at a perpetual advantage, this new award is a great platform through which stallions with fewer runners can be recognised.”
The long list of stallions was taken from the Stallion of the Month features which appear in the European Bloodstock News with support from the British EBF. The features highlight a stallion standing in GB at the time of writing who have excelled with their offspring in the preceding month. Amy Bennett, Managing Editor of the publication and selection committee member explained:
“Producing the monthly Stallion Focus articles, supported by the British EBF, has really called attention to the diversity and strength of the British stallion market and hopefully highlights to breeders some of the less obvious stallions who are out-performing their fee, as well as celebrating the achievements of those in the upper echelons. Some of the highest-achieving stallions will of course always appear in the nomination list for this award but it also gives a very positive avenue for every stallion that achieves noteworthy success.”
TBA Chief Executive Claire Sheppard added:
“We are delighted to be working with the EBF team and their development of this new award which will recognise an outstanding achievement from a stallion within the domestic market. The criteria of this award ensures that significant achievements are duly rewarded and recognised, looking beyond the realms of statistics to support a broad and diverse thoroughbred breeding industry. We would like to thank the BEBF Trustees for developing and supporting this award which will be presented at our virtual Flat Breeders’ Awards Evening online.”
The judging panel has been taken from across the industry and has been joined by guest judge Oisin Murphy to select the overall winner of the award.
European Breeders’ Fund Stallion Special Merit Award Short List (2019 achievements):
NIGHT OF THUNDER
The winner will be decided by the selection committee and the winner announced on the day of the virtual TBA Flat Breeders’ event.
European Breeders’ Fund Stallion Special Merit Award Selection Committee:
Anita Wigan TBA Trustee
James McHale British EBF Trustee
Amy Bennett European Bloodstock News Managing Editor
Cheryl Caves Operations Manager, EBF
Guest judge Oisin Murphy, Champion Jockey 2019.
European Breeders’ Fund Stallion Special Merit Award Long List (2019 achievements):