European Breeders’ Fund becomes an Official Partner of The Jockey Clu

Wed 17 Jan 2018



The British arm of the European Breeders’ Fund (EBF) has become an Official Partner of The Jockey Club, it was announced today, in recognition of the major investment domestic Stallion Studs make into British Racing via the British EBF.

The partnership is designed to help to heighten awareness within the British Racing industry of the significant contribution the British EBF is making to racing in this country, using the platform The Jockey Club can provide through its 15-strong group of racecourses nationwide.

The vast majority of the £1.6 million per year supplementation of prize money that the British EBF provides is via contributions from the income of stallions standing in Great Britain.  EBF enhancements to prize money are always reflected above the minimum value of a race, so owners benefit directly from the fund.  The trustees also direct money into parts of the programme that encourage progression or which require support.

Recent Flat racing initiatives include investment in Listed races, the EBF Breeders’ Series of fillies’ handicaps and the sire and dam restricted two-year-old maiden races which support the renewed industry focus on stayers.  The 80 National Hunt races which the EBF support have a strong focus on fillies and mares to compliment industry drive in this area.

Founded in 1750, today The Jockey Club is the largest commercial group in British horseracing and stages a range of racing, music and other events and activities at its venues nationwide, including four of the five British Classics, the Randox Health Grand National and The Cheltenham Festival. It is governed by Royal Charter to act as a champion for British Racing’s long-term prosperity, including reinvesting all its profits back into the sport.

Stephen Wallis, Group Director of International and Racing Relations at The Jockey Club, explained why The Jockey Club were keen to initiate the new partnership:

“The European Breeders’ Fund has been an integral part of the landscape of British Racing for more than 30 years. We are proud to stage the largest number of EBF races at The Jockey Club’s racecourses and thus help to facilitate this important initiative for horsemen. We are very pleased to be working with the British EBF now as an Official Partner in the promotion of our sport and in support of our prize money aims. Hopefully the group-wide platform we offer will help to showcase to the industry what a significant contribution the British EBF is making to racing in this country.”

Philip Mitchell, Chairman of the British EBF, commented:

“The trustees of the British EBF are delighted that The Jockey Club is acknowledging British stallion studs and owners’ support of British Racing in this way.  We hope that this new relationship will increase the profile of the organisation and further understanding within the industry as to what we do and how we are funded.  The Fund is still a vital tool to boost prize money which we could not provide without the support and generosity of the stallion masters.

“We are working with other racecourses and groups on similar projects to the group-wide partnership with The Jockey Club and its racecourses, and hope that the initiative that they have shown in approaching us will pave the way for further industry engagement.”

British EBF/ The Jockey Club

Photo credit: John Hoy (Hoy Cubed Photography)

British EBF maintain record support for National Hunt Racing

Thu 16 Nov 2017


The bloodstock news pages are full at present of flat racing stallion prospects for the coming stud season. It is the highest value and most prolific of these horses that provide the bulk of the income for the European Breeders’ Fund and enable the organisation to continually support enhancements to prize money. National Hunt sires however, make up an important part of the stallion landscape in Great Britain and with the jumps season now in full swing, the British EBF have announced their investment in this area of the sport for the coming year.

The popularity of horses such as Overbury Stud’s seven-time Champion British National Hunt sire KAYF TARA and the addition of horses such as CLOVIS DU BERLAIS to the roster at Yorton Farm for 2017 mean that National Hunt stallion contributions to the EBF fund are at an all-time high.  This in turn, has led to the EBF being able to maintain its highest ever contribution of £125,000 from the fund into National Hunt racing prize money for the second season running.

The 2017/18 British EBF programme covers 86 races divided into four main categories, the largest of which is the popular Novice Hurdle Qualifier Series. Three further categories focus on the promotion of opportunities for fillies and mares with programmes covering: Novice Hurdles, Novice Chases and NH Flat races.  Each carry valuable finals scheduled for March and April next year at Sandown, Newbury and Cheltenham.  The total prize money across the British EBF supported National Hunt races for the current season easily tops £650,000.

Marketing and Communications Manager, Rachael Gowland explains how the investment in prize money is possible:

“The British EBF is funded mainly by contributions from the income of stallions standing in Great Britain.  As there are fewer National Hunt sires in the country, it stands to reason that the amount of money we invest in National Hunt racing is smaller than for Flat racing.  That being said, we have a targeted approach to how we use that money and work closely with the BHA to make sure our aims are in line with those of the wider industry; hence the focus on mares’ races in particular.

We are particularly pleased to announce that as a result of working closely with Sandown Park, we have been able to boost the prize money for the Mares NH Flat Race final at Sandown next spring by £6,000 taking the TPF up to £26,000.

Many other courses have also been able to improve their total prize funds for NH races supported by the EBF, for example, Lingfield Park have increased one of their novice hurdle qualifiers by £2,000.  Part of what the EBF aims to do is to encourage racecourse to enhance or match fund our contributions above minimum value for races so it is great to see this happening across the board.”

The British EBF supports National Hunt racing at nearly every course in Great Britain from the flagship tracks of Ascot, Cheltenham and Aintree to the Gold Castle Listed Stakes at Britain’s most northerly course of Perth and the ever popular summer jumps racing fixtures at Cartmel.

In addition to investments in racing prize money, the British EBF also supports National Hunt breeders.  The organisation lends nearly £6,000 of support annually to the National Hunt Foal Show, where they sponsor lunch, and the National Hunt Stallion Parade each year; both events organised by the Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association.

Joe Foley Appointed as Irish EBF Deputy Chairman

Sat 21 Oct 2017


Saturday 21st October

The Irish European Breeders’ Fund has named Joe Foley of Ballyhane Stud as their Deputy Chairman. Joe replaces John Osborne after he took up the positon as CEO of HRI Racecourses. Joe will work alongside John O’Connor of Ballylinch Stud who is the current Irish EBF Chairman.

John O’Connor, Irish EBF Chairman, said; “Joe became a Governor of the Irish EBF in 2002, since then he has always brought a wealth of knowledge, enthusiasm and ideas to everything the Irish EBF has worked on. All the Irish EBF Governors voluntarily give up their time and expertise to make sure funds raised from Irish Stallion Farms are best distributed to benefit Irish racing. Joe’s expertise will help to further strengthen Irish EBF’s position as Irish racing’s largest sponsor.”

Full Field to Contest €120,000 Auction Series Final

Fri 13 Oct 2017

Red Persian and Kevin Manning in the centre winning the Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Race, Leopardstown Photo: Patrick McCann

Red Persian and Kevin Manning in the centre winning the Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Race, Leopardstown Photo: Patrick McCann

A full field of 16 will line up in the €120,000 Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Series Final at Naas on Sunday after this morning’s declarations stage, including a first British runner in the race with Apple Anni set to represent Mick Channon.

Among the leading fancies will be Dermot Weld’s Yulong Gold Fairy, who won a race in the series at the Galway Festival in the familiar Zhang Yuesheng silks and will be reopposed by Quizical and Captain Vancouver who followed her home that day. Quizical will be representing Sheila Lavery who won the inaugural running of the Auction Final in 2015 with Sevenleft.

Chris Hayes, who won the race last year on board Kevin Prendergast’s Trevanna, teams with the trainer’s nephew Patrick this time around to ride Red Persian, who followed home one of Europe’s top juveniles in Beckford in a series qualifier at the Curragh in May before winning the Leopardstown leg.

Tom Mullins’ Powerville, already a winner of two legs of the series, bids for a third success, while other winners of previous races in the series who will bid for the first prize of €72,000 include Johnny Murtagh’s Beach Wedding, Noel Meade’s Cocohulababy, Tom Cooper’s Lisard Lady and Tracey Collins’ Sollertia.

Andrew Slattery’s Spiorad Saoirse is another Galway Festival winner, while Ball Girl, one of two from the Ger Lyons yard who was third in a Group 3 at the Curragh, and Michael Grassick’s Verhoyen, runner-up in a Listed race at Naas in May, are others who bring a good competitive level of form to the table.

Ger Lyons, Trainer of Ball Girl and Burmese Blazer: “We run two on Sunday and hopefully one will collect some of the big prize. Ball Girl is in with a good chance and it would be a great end to the season for her to finish in the money. The Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Series is a great addition to our yards targets and hopefully we will have more firepower for next year’s series.”

John O’Connor, Chairman, Irish EBF: “Sunday’s €120,000 final marks the third year of the auction series, significantly this year, the series was boosted by joining forces with Foran Equine. Their involvement enabled the series to grow and become an important element of the Irish juvenile racing programme. The Irish EBF trustees want the series to continue to flourish and we urge all purchasers of yearlings for €72,000 and under and who are EBF eligible to target the series in 2018.”

Gareth Connolly, Sales and Marketing Director, Foran Equine: “Sunday’s final is shaping-up to be a fantastic contest, with a €120,000 at stake it’s no surprise that a full field has been declared. It is particularly satisfying that the 16 declared runners where purchased for between €2,500 and €48,000, with an average auction price of just over €14,000. We’re very grateful to everyone who has supported the series and especially the Irish European Breeders’ Fund for working so closely with our team to promote and develop our partnership.”


Nessa Joyce, Manager, Irish European Breeders’ Fund
Greenhills, Kill, Naas, Co Kildare, W91 FY62
M: +353 85 7590970, E: Twitter: @IrishEBF