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The sixth running of the Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Series Final has attracted 60 two-year-olds, which will be run at Naas Racecourse, on Sunday October 18th. Irish EBF, Horse Racing Ireland and Foran Equine are delighted to be in a position to keep the prize fund for the 7 furlong final at €120,000 and as a further enhancement, the €30,000 nursery handicap will be staged on the same day, the 6 furlong race, is open to horses who have run in a qualifying series race and all horses must be EBF eligible to enter both races.
There are an impressive twelve series winners listed in the entries representing ten different trainers, including Snapraeterea for Joseph O’Brien who won his qualifier at Roscommon before trying his hand at Group 2 level. Ecliptical and Amber Kite are both series winners for Ger Lyons where he has entered five in total for the final. An impressive winner in Down Royal, A Case Of You is owned and trained by John McConnell, he was bought for a mere €3,000 from the Goffs Sportman’s yearling sale and from two runs in the series has won €15,800. Last year’s final winning trainer, Willie McCreerey, is represented by Huddle Up, a €8,000 Goffs Sportmans graduate who has already won his purchase price back by winning his qualifier in Cork.
Willie McCreery, trainer, commented: “I’m delighted to have two entered in the Foran Equine Irish EBF final, we won it last year with Lustown Baba who was bought for only €12,000 and has won over €100,000 to date for his owners the Back Road Syndicate. Huddle Up was bought cheaply (€8,000) for a great owner of mine Michael O’Donnell and we have him entered in the Foran/EBF winners race at the Curragh this weekend and then onto the main target, the series final at Naas. It’s a brilliant series that has given us and our owners great opportunities with yearlings purchased for modest money.”
Nessa Joyce, Irish EBF Manager, said: “The series now in its sixth year and firmly established as a target for owners and trainers of two-year-olds, by hosting the €120,000 final and the €30,000 nursery handicap on the same day, it will give connections of 32 runners a chance at a massive €150,000 pot. The success of the series is due to owners and trainers buying at the yearling and breeze up sales with the series in mind and we look forward to seeing them compete in next year’s series.”
Gareth Connolly, Sales and Marketing Director, Foran Equine, commented: “We are delighted to see quality entries for the Foran Equine Irish EBF auction series final at Naas on October 18th. During these unprecedented times, the series has continued to generate many positive opportunities and success stories for our customers including the trainers, owners and breeders who are the backbone of the industry. We are grateful to the Irish EBF for being a fantastic partner and for their additional support through these difficult times. Last year’s final was a brilliant occasion and we are looking forward to working closely with Irish EBF and Naas Racecourse to deliver another exciting final.”
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