Irish EBF Announce New Initiatives

Fri 5 May 2017

To further support the Irish Racing Industry, Irish EBF have announced five new initiatives targeted at the grassroots of Irish Racing


The purpose of the Irish EBF is to annually re-invest the income contributed from Irish based stallion owners directly into Irish prize money. For 2017 further investment was allocated to create five new initiatives to bring the commitment to Irish Prizemoney to €2 million. Speaking about the new initiatives John O’Connor, Chairman, Irish EBF said “The aim of the Irish EBF is target funding to where it will make a difference. We annually review the spend and this year we were in a position to expand our objectives to include a series for National Hunt Handicaps, Best Turned Out Prizes for grooms, a focus on staying races in Ireland, expansion of Fillies Handicaps and a partnership with Foran Equine for an Auction Series. These initiatives will complement our regular programme of races and we are confident they will make a difference to the grassroots of the industry”


  • The new €300,000 Irish EBF Summer National Hunt Handicap Series is designed to support twenty middle range handicaps (with rating caps of 109 or 116), comprising 14 hurdles and 6 chases, which will be run for an increased prize money value of €15,000 each, during the summer period. This is part of an overall initiative by Horse Racing Ireland to provide more competitive options for middle to lower tier National Hunt horses. Speaking about the new initiative, William Flood, Governor, Irish EBF said “The Irish EBF are committed to annually support National Hunt racing in Ireland and this series goes to the core of our values. We are determined to make the series a regular feature, therefore we are inviting interest from commercial sponsors who would like to partner with the Irish EBF. A partnership will solidify the series and directly benefit the grassroots of National Hunt racing in Ireland”


  • Working with the Association of Irish Racecourses, a commitment was made to sponsor the Best Turned Out prize for 275 Irish EBF supported races to the tune of €100. This was made possible by sharing the costs 50/50 with the racecourses. Each racecourse have committed to match the €50 Irish EBF will give towards the Best Turned Out prize. Over a 12 month period nearly €28,000 will be awarded to the hard working grooms that play such a fundamental role in each raceday. Speaking about the new project, Bernard Caldwell, Chairman, Irish Stablestaff Association said “The Irish Stablestaff Association wish to thank and congratulate the racecourses and the Irish EBF for their new initiative. €100 as a best turned prize is a wonderful incentive for grooms to have their horses turned out to perfection. The prize goes a long way in repaying the dedication shown by grooms and we appreciate the commitment shown to our members.”


  • On Saturday May 20th, at Navan Racecourse, the Irish EBF will sponsor a new Listed race, The €75,000 Irish Stallion Farms EBF Yeats Stakes over 13 furlongs. This is part of the European Pattern Committee long term Stayers Project, aimed to enhance the overall European stayers’ programme, with a view to incentivising the breeding, owning and training of quality staying horses in Europe. As a further commitment to supporting staying races, the Irish EBF have increased the contribution to three year old and three year old and upwards median auction maiden races of 9f or further. The aim is to target support for produce of stallions that are likely to produce staying progeny.


  • In an effort to create more opportunities for flat-bred Fillies to help enhance their value within the competitive environment of handicaps, the Irish EBF have provided additional sponsorship for Fillies only handicaps. This year, eight additional races were added to give a total of 25 Fillies only Handicaps, with a total prize fund of under €600,000. John Osborne, Vice Chairman, Irish EBF said “This is a significant increase in support by the Irish EBF. It will open up new opportunities to owners of flat-bred Fillies. Fillies make up half of our production and then become the broodmares of the future, these handicaps provide a pathway to black type and a chance to increase their paddock value.”


  • Saturday May 6th, marks the first race in the Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Series, at Cork Racecourse. Eight two-year-olds go to post for the €25,000 prize fund. As a group their average purchase price from four different sales companies (Keeneland, Arqana, Goffs and Tattersalls) is €30,000. The next race will be on the opening day at the Curragh on Saturday May 13th where two-year old maidens will compete for €25,000. The long term aim is to establish the series as a target for purchasers of yearlings and 2yos at public auction. Purchasers at the upcoming Goresbridge Breeze-Up sale will have the unique opportunity to buy in May and race straightaway in the series between June and October, if they are purchased for €72,000 or less. Further details and race criteria can be found at


Overall the Irish EBF will spend €2 million on sponsorship of Irish Racing in 2017. Approximately €1.5 million is allocated to 270 flat races and about €500,000 is allocated to over 140 National Hunt races. This investment goes to help ensure a healthy and vibrant future for racing in Ireland, only made possible by the generous contributions given voluntarily by Irish Stallion Farms.




For Further Information:
Nessa Joyce


Irish European Breeders Fund

Greenhills, Kill, Naas, Co Kildare, W91 FY62

Mob:    +353 85 7590970

Tel:      +353 45 910999


Irish EBF NH 2017 Summer Series Races
Date Venue Conditions
Friday 12 May 2017 Kilbeggan Handicap Hurdle (80-116)
Wednesday 17 May 2017 Punchestown Handicap Steeplechase 5yo and up (0-116)
Thursday 18 May 2017 Clonmel Handicap Hurdle (116 = 11.10)
Wednesday 24 May 2017 Wexford Handicap Steeplechase 5yo and up (109 = 11.10)
Saturday 3 June 2017 Tramore Handicap Hurdle (80-109)
Sunday 4 June 2017 Kilbeggan Handicap Hurdle (80-109)
Monday 26 June 2017 Kilbeggan Handicap Steeplechase (0-116)
Sunday 9 July 2017 Limerick Handicap Hurdle (80-109)
Tuesday 18 July 2017 Killarney Handicap Steeplechase 5yo and up (0-116)
Saturday 22 July 2017 Limerick Handicap Hurdle (116 = 11.10)
Monday 7 August 2017 Cork Handicap Hurdle (80-109)
Tuesday 22 August 2017 Sligo Handicap Hurdle (116 = 11.10)
Friday 25 August 2017 Kilbeggan Handicap Hurdle (80-109)
Saturday 2 September 2017 Wexford Handicap Steeplechase (109 = 11.10)
Monday 4 September 2017 Roscommon Handicap Hurdle (80-109)
Thursday 7 September 2017 Clonmel Handicap Hurdle (80-116)
Thursday 7 September 2017 Clonmel Handicap Hurdle (116 = 11.10)
Saturday 23 September 2017 Navan Handicap Hurdle (116 = 11.10)
Monday 25 September 2017 Roscommon Handicap Steeplechase (116 = 11.10)
Thursday 28 September 2017 Clonmel Handicap Hurdle (80-109)