Mon 4 Jun 2018
Richard Fahey took the first race of the Investec Derby Festival, the Investec Woodcote EBF Conditions Race, with Cosmic Law. The trustees of the British EBF and Epsom Downs Racecourse have worked hand in hand with headline sponsors Investec to improve the prize money for the 2yo contest by £20,000 since its running last year.
Ridden by P J McDonald, the No Nay Never two-year-old colt was highly impressive, drawing away from the field to score by six lengths at odds of 10/1 in a time of 1min 11.95 seconds.
Fahey said: “I was expecting him to run well. But it’s amazing – you sit in the car on the way here, reading the paper, and you see he is the outsider. You think I’m getting this very wrong here – or someone is, anyway. It’s just nice to see him win. He’s a grand horse and a horse we like. He’s quite a laidback character and is getting better with racing, but to win by six lengths – I didn’t see that.
“Six furlongs suits him – five is his bare minimum. He went to Carlisle [over that trip] and only got going 50 yards from the line and took off, and PJ [McDonald] said the penny just dropped. Some horses need racing, some need looking after, but he’s one who definitely improved from racing.”
Asked about what Cosmic Law what do next, he replied: “Coming down in the car I was thinking about the Coventry [at Royal Ascot] and then that we had no chance, but it is definitely in my mind and I will speak to [owner] John Dance. He’s a good-minded horse and if any horse could do it, it’d be him.
“We galloped nine horses on our grass and they have all won. They all finished in a heap that day and I thought ‘Well, there’s no star there’, but it looks like there are three or four stars among them. We are quite happy at the moment with the two-year-olds.
“I am delighted for John Dance, who is a big supporter of the northern trainers. It was great to see Laurens win in France the other day – she is representing the north, not just John – and I am delighted for him because he invests a lot of money and it’s great that he is getting the reward.”
Wed 16 May 2018
Entries for a brand-new EBF novice race for two-year olds closes tomorrow (17th May 2018).
The Class 3, British Stallion Studs EBF Novice Stakes will be staged at Great Yarmouth on 23rd May, which had a fantastic opening meeting earlier in the month with the likes of WITHOUT PAROLE (Frankel) making his seasonal reappearance, over six furlongs and carries at total prize fund of £15,000.
The race has been specifically designed to attract potential Royal Ascot two-year olds; providing valuable racecourse experience for the juveniles ahead of progression to possible runs in races such as the Coventry or Albany Stakes (both Gr.2) by making use of the two-year-old friendly straight at Yarmouth.
The race came in to being as a result of consultation between the BHA, Arena Racing Company and the British EBF and has been funded in part via the BEBF Development Fund.
Rachael Gowland, Marketing and Communications Manager of the British EBF explained:
“The British EBF are always looking to improve graduating opportunities for EBF two-year-olds; after the success of the likes of HEARTACHE, HEADWAY, TAKE ME WTH YOU and SANTRY all progressing via EBF maiden/ novice races to win or be placed at the Royal meeting in 2017, the chance to further enhance this area of our portfolio was very attractive.
We are lucky to have several exciting pre-Ascot opportunities in our sponsorship program and this provides a great enhancement to our EBF races for 2018 along with our increased involvement in similar races at Chester’s May meetings, Lingfield and York’s Dante Festival.”
Richard Aldous, Clerk of the Course at Yarmouth added:
“Our opening meeting showcased Great Yarmouth with excellent field sizes. Every season, stars of the future learn their craft on our track, which we have put a great deal of work into in recent years. We are always ready to welcome trainers from across the region, and country where possible, to take advantage of the great racing surface we have here and we are looking forward to taking this race forward with the British EBF.”
Sat 12 May 2018
Breeders Series Fillies’ Handicaps 2018
British EBF Breeders’ Series Returns today
The British EBF Breeders’ Series of Fillies’ Handicaps kicks off its third year today at Ascot with the EBF “Breeders’ Series” Fillies’ Handicap Stakes.
Traditionally the first race of the series this Class 2 contest over a mile is the most valuable lead up race at £45,000 bar the program’s culmination at Newmarket’s Rowley Mile on 6th October where each of the four finales are worth £50,000.
This group of races was masterminded by the BHA for the 2016 season to provide progressive opportunities for three-year-old and up fillies that fall just under Listed Class. With over £300,000 of British EBF investment, the 20-race series is now worth in excess of £625,000 for the 2018 flat season with distance categories ranging from six to 12 furlongs.
Inevitably, the races have provided stepping-stones for some fillies to black type performances. The 2017 series produced EARTHA KITT (Pivotal) who won her EBF Breeders’ Series handicap at York in June easily before moving on to run third in the Gr.3 Summer Stakes at the same track and win the Listed EBF Boadicea Stakes at Newmarket at the end of the season. MELODIC MOTION (Nathaniel) won her EBF Breeders’ Series Handicap at Goodwood in May; she went on to be runner up in the Gr.2 Park Hill Stakes during Doncaster’s St Leger Festival.
Other notable graduates of the 2017 series include Listed winners TITI MAKFI (Makfi), BILLESDON BESS (Dick Turpin) and TISBUTADREAM (Dream Ahead).
Wed 25 Apr 2018
Launch of the 2018 Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Series – Nessa Joyce, Irish EBF, Patrick Prendergast and Kirsty McCann, Foran Equine with Sunday Smart and Red Persian
Owners & trainers poised to target €617,000 series with 22 qualifiers & €120,000 final
Irish EBF and Foran Equine have launched the 2018 Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Series for 2yos bought at auction for €72,000 or less and by an EBF registered sire. Total prize-money for the series has increased to €617,000 with two additional qualifying races bringing the total number of qualifiers to 22. Now in its fourth year the Auction Series has established itself as a principle target for 2yos.
Each of the 22 qualifying races will have a minimum prize-fund of €20,000 as well as the added benefit of being Plus 10 registered, whereby qualified winners will be eligible for a bonus of €12,500 under the Plus 10 Scheme giving a winning owner a potential payout of just under €25,000. The first race will take place at the Curragh Racecourse on Friday 11th May with the €120,000 final to be held at Naas Racecourse on 21st October.
Patrick Prendergast, trainer said; “I’m a major fan of the Foran EBF Series, it opens avenues for the smaller owner and encourages them to buy horses. It’s a good sales pitch for me when I go to the sales, I can say to the owners that you have a great chance on your investment. Because our Irish maidens are so competitive, we need people to have a chance and this series offers that chance, there’s room for every horse. The whole thing is achievable, it’s not like trying to win a Group 1, you buy a horse, syndicate it for a reasonable budget, there’s a programme of races and there’s a final to aim at. I have a good string of 2yos this year, they are nearly all eligible and we’ll be aiming at the series with plenty of them.”
Eamonn McEvoy, Stud Manager Grangecon Stud and owner said; “This series caters for everyone, which is important. It’s brilliant for owners, if you go and win or place in one of the qualifiers it can make a massive difference for your training fees, and other costs. Where else would you get it, if you are going to compete in an open maiden at the Curragh it’s going to be very difficult to win, so it’s very important that this series is in place. It’s great that there are two extra races this year, we’ll hopefully have a winner in one of them. If you have a horse qualified you’d be crazy not to target the final, everyone is going to be there, there is a great buzz about the Foran EBF Series, everyone is onboard and everyone is excited.”
Nessa Joyce, Irish EBF Manager said: “The Irish EBF committee created this series with HRI to stimulate the middle to lower end of the auction market and create a link between bloodstock sales and the racetrack. Data from last year’s series revealed that 50% of the winners were bought at auction for €19,000 or less which included the overall winner Yulong Gold Fairy who was bought for €8,000, this shows that the series has come full circle and in fact has exceeded our expectations. The focus is on continuing the momentum and reminding trainers, owners and agents heading to the sales this year to target the Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Series.”
Kirsty McCann, Foran Equine said; “We were very lucky to partner with Irish EBF on this great series, we wanted to be able to support the grassroots of the industry and offer a valuable return to the owners, trainers and breeders who have been our customers for over 40 years. Each winning breeder and trainer receives a €150 voucher for our products, plus the winning trainer receives a pack containing many of our Performance Range products. Being a supplement company, we are all about wellbeing and welfare, and to see these horses racing and being presented in immaculate condition is fantastic, each Best Turned Out winning groom receives a voucher for our RED MILLS Store in Cillin Hill. The final at Naas Racecourse is a huge occasion, it’s our chance to say thank you and we invite everyone back including owners and breeders to celebrate and enjoy the occasion.”
Shane Doyle of Horse Racing Ireland said: “In 2014, before the series started, there was only eight 2yo auction races in Ireland, now there are 23 thanks to the growth and popularity of the Foran EBF Series. The total number of runners has more than doubled since 2015 to 287 last year and more trainers are getting involved every year, so it is having a positive effect. The €120,000 final pays prize-money to 6th place and the first six home last year were all bought for €20,000 or less. It helps to support ownership; a lot of these horses are able to pay for their expenses if they win or are placed in the series and they also become very valuable prospects as seen when Whitefountainfairy, purchased for €3,000 made £300,000 at the Goffs Royal Ascot Sale after winning a Foran EBF Maiden.”