ARC and British EBF establish partnership and increase investment

Wed 4 Apr 2018

EBF_St Leger Festival 2017 Wednesday

Arena Racing Company has announced it has formalised its partnership with the British arm of the European Breeders Fund.

The new partnership will see further investment in prize money by the British EBF and ARC, including the creation of new two-year races at Great Yarmouth and Newcastle racecourses.

Following feedback from leading trainers, ARC has worked with the British EBF and British Horseracing Authority (“BHA”) to create a new race for two-year olds at Great Yarmouth. The £15,000 Class 3 contest over 6 furlongs will be hosted on Wednesday 23 May and seeks to provide an ideal early season race for horses aiming to go on to run at Royal Ascot and other feature race meetings during the summer.

Leading Newmarket trainer John Gosden OBE said: “This will provide a useful opportunity for the two-year olds to gain race experience before Royal Ascot. After all the remedial work, the turf at Great Yarmouth is some of the best in the country and it is an ideal track for a young horse.”

Clerk of the Course at Great Yarmouth, Richard Aldous, said: “Every season racegoers have the chance the see some of the best young horses running here at Great Yarmouth. We hope very much that through ARC’s investment in the racing surface, and with the support of the British EBF, that this new race will provide another opportunity to see some of the stars of the future.”

In addition to the new race at Great Yarmouth further joint investments in the race programme include:

  • The introduction of a British EBF supported sire-dam restricted £10,000 Class 4 race for two-year olds at Newcastle on 30 November 2018;
  • The prize fund for the Listed British Stallion Studs EBF John Musker Stakes, run on the middle day of Great Yarmouth’s Eastern Festival in September, increasing to £50,000 through mutual match funding;
  • British EBF support for the August Stakes at Royal Windsor; an 11 furlong Listed contest for horses aged three-years and over; the total prize money for this race has been increased to £40,000 in 2018 as a result of EBF investment;
  • British EBF investment in a two-year old future stayers’ race on the third day of the William Hill St Leger Festival at Doncaster. This will be run as a Class 3 maiden over a mile with a Total Prize Fund of £15,000 in its first year; and
  • Continued support from the British EBF for fillies and mares’ races through the winter months as part of the All-Weather Championships.

As part of the partnership all ARC racecourse websites now carry the British EBF logo and both organisations work together to promote British EBF supported races run on ARC racecourses.

ARC Chief Executive, Martin Cruddace, said: “The British EBF plays an incredibly valuable role in British Racing. By formalising our partnership, we are recognising this and providing the basis on which ARC and the British EBF can develop over investment in the race programme which is of significant long-term benefit to the sport. We look forward to see how the new races perform and hope they will be well supported by the racing community.”

British EBF Chairman, Philip Mitchell, said: “The trustees are delighted that ARC has worked so closely with the British EBF executive to bring these significant advancements to the race programme and funding to fruition.  Of particular significance are the additions to the two-year old programme.  The maiden races at Great Yarmouth and Newcastle which have been fashioned in direct response to feedback and requests from trainers.  The new Sire/Dam Restricted race at Doncaster’s St Leger Festival complements a race meeting which celebrates the staying horse and forms part of the British EBF funded initiative to encourage late season opportunities for two-year olds by “staying stallions”. If one day, we see a future St Leger winner graduate via this race, we will know we are well on the way to the revitalisation of this area of the race programme.”

Irish EBF Auction Hurdle Series Announced

Sun 1 Apr 2018

Series designed for horses bought at National Hunt Auctions for €45,000 or lessBirdie Image Auction Hurdel Series

Following on from the success of the Foran Equine/Irish EBF Auction Series on the flat, the Irish EBF wish to announce a parallel series for the National Hunt sector. The Irish EBF Auction Hurdle Series will consist of 14 maiden and novice hurdle races from September 2018 until April 2019, each worth a minimum of €20,000, with a final in April worth €75,000. Entry into the valuable final will be limited to horses which have run in one of the previous races in the series.

The conditions will specify that all horses must be by an EBF registered stallion and bought as an unraced three or four year old at a recognised National Hunt Store sale for €45,000 or less, with weight allowances depending on purchase price.

Speaking about the announcement, John O’Connor, Chairman, Irish EBF, said; “Horse Racing Ireland and the Irish EBF designed this new series with the smaller trainer and owner in mind. This series will create a number of valuable opportunities where horses in this price range can compete on a level playing field. Based on initial feedback, we anticipate the new series will be very well received and our goal is to establish this as a permanent fixture on the National Hunt scene.”

Tony Mullins, trainer, commented;“This will be a super series and with big prizemoney on offer in each qualifier and in the final, I can see this being well supported. It will give me and my owners a focus for the sales this year, knowing the series is there as a target. “

Denis Hogan, trainer & jockey; “It is a fantastic opportunity for a trainer like myself to help recruit and retain owners in the yard and give them a fair chance to win a valuable race. The percentage of horses available at the sales for this money is vast and it will be great to purchase at this level with a goal in mind.”

For Further Information:

Nessa Joyce, Manager, Irish European Breeders’ Fund

Greenhills, Kill, Naas, Co Kildare, W91 FY62

M: +353 85 7590970, E: Twitter & Facebook: @IrishEBF

EBF May nomination deadline change

Thu 29 Mar 2018

The deadline for nominating yearlings to the European Breeders Fund has been moved to  31st May.  At a cost of $600, any yearling by a sire not registered to the EBF and standing outside of Europe can be made eligible to run in the EBF programme of races throughout Europe,which are worth €5million in additional prizemoney.

Kerry Murphy of the EBF explains: “We review our nominations process annually and, as the yearling sales landscape has changed over the years, we felt that it is now possible to move this deadline out to May 31st, giving breeders that intend to race their yearlings or those that are consigning them to a sale plenty of time to nominate.  Those nominated at $600 by May 31st will be confirmed as EBF nominated on their page in the major yearling sales catalogues.  This nomination stage is mostly applicable to breeders using American or Japanese stallions that are not registered to the EBF.  Thanks to increasing support, the list of internationally registered stallions has grown significantly and we advise breeders to check with us to see if their yearling does need nominating”.

Nominations can be made online via the website or by contacting the EBF office.

ROKSANA wins EBF/ TBA Mares’ Novice Hurdle Finale 2018

Mon 26 Mar 2018

3.15pm £40,000 G2 EBF & TBA Mares’ National Hunt Limited Handicap Novices’ Hurdle Finale 2m 4.5f

ROKSANA wins the EBF/ TBA Mares' Novice Hurdle Finale 2018 (ImageFrancesca Altoft)

ROKSANA wins the EBF/ TBA Mares’ Novice Hurdle Finale 2018 (ImageFrancesca Altoft)

The 16-runner Finale was fiercely competitive and there were plenty still in with a chance approaching entering the straight.

Top-weight Midnight Tune (Anthony Honeyball/Aidan Coleman, 11st 10lb, 11/1) led for a long while but started to drop out of contention after straightening up.

Kalahari Queen (Jamie Snowden/Gavin Sheehan, 11st 1lb, 12/1) led three out but made a mistake at the next where Roksana (Dan Skelton/Bridget Andrews (3), 11st 2lb, 9/1) went second before leading at the last and running on well to score by two and three quarter lengths.

Kalahari Queen held on to second by a half-length from the staying-on Jubilympics (Seamus Mullins/Daniel Sansom (5), 9st 13lb, 50/1), with consistent Just A Thought (Rebecca Curtis/Adam Wedge, 10st 11lb, 7/1) fourth.

Bridget Andrews, who gained her first Cheltenham Festival winner earlier this month, took over from her boyfriend Harry Skelton in the saddle after he failed to pass the doctor at Newbury today and claimed a valuable 3lb off Roksana’s original weight of 11st 5lb.

She reported: “Unfortunately, Harry did not pass the doctor and luckily the owners kindly let me ride her.

“Roksana is quite a decent mare I think. We really liked here and this race was always the aim. We campaigned her quite lowly with a couple of easy novice hurdles and she has come through them well.

“Actually, she travelled through the race a little too well – carting me around. I was thinking that we were going to fall in a hole because she had done way too much, but she was so tough and, after the last, there was no catching her.

“The ground was fairly testing, but she didn’t seem to mind. She is a proper, proper horse.

“She is going to stay further in time and she is big enough to jump a fence. She will be sent to stud at some point, but I think she can go a long way on the racecourse.

“Harry does not mind if I get on his horses, but I think he finds it hard when someone outside the yard rides them. He has taken it pretty well, but how he is going to continue to take it until he gets back we will have to see.

“It was an unbelievable day to win at Cheltenham – a day I will definitely never forget and I am so grateful for the whole team for believing in me and supporting me.”

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