TRC’s new weekly industry digest - a round-up of international racing news from the past week
Big boost for Cesarewitch as Newmarket increases prize money
Europe: The Jockey Club has announced that overall prize money at Newmarket Racecourses will be increasing by ten percent to £10.85 million this year.
Next month’s QIPCO Guineas Festival is worth a new record £1.7 million, the Dubai Future Champions Festival in October offers an aggregate total of over £2 million, while the average prize money per race across the entire 39-fixture programme is nearly £40,000.
The Cesarewitch, run in October, doubles to £500,000 in 2018. It was also confirmed today that the 2m2f contest will increase in value by a further 50 percent, to £750,000 in 2019, and to £1 million a year later.
Amy Starkey, Regional Director, Jockey Club Racecourses East Region, said, “We are maintaining our investment in prize money for all our top races, while making a significant commitment to the racing industry’s support for stayers.
“We are looking forward to another tremendously exciting season of racing on both the Rowley Mile and the July Course, starting with the bet365 Craven Meeting this month, which begins the story of the flat season in Britain every year.”
Ebor to be worth £1 million next year
Europe: Online bookmaker Sky Bet has signed a five-year agreement with York Racecourse to be the title sponsor of the Ebor Handicap. The deal will see prize money for the historic contest increasing by 75 per cent to £500,000 this year and then rising to £1 million the following year.
The conditions for the 1m5f handicap, which is held on the final day of York's four-day Ebor Festival, will be amended to make it a race for 4-year olds and upwards, so ensuring this significant boost in funds does not distort the Pattern programme, particularly with respect to the programme for highly rated horses of the classic generation.
Sky Bet will also sponsor the Melrose Stakes, regarded by many to be the '3-year-olds' Ebor'. Prize-money for the race will increase by 20 per cent to £125,000, while the bookmaker will lend its name to the £170,000 Great Voltigeur Stakes.
New regime at Cambridge Stud
Oceania: Brendan and Jo Lindsay have officially taken over Cambridge Stud in New Zealand. Erstwhile owners Sir Patrick and Justine Lady Hogan agreed the sale to their compatriots in December 2017 after four decades of running the historic farm, whose stallions have sired 134 individual G1 winners.
"Cambridge will undergo a major refurbishment over the next three years, including the upgrade of the recently acquired, adjoining Thorpe property, to cater for our expanding stallion roster," said Brendan Lindsay. "We will continue to operate Cambridge as a premier stallion and broodmare operation, doing what the stud has done best for 40 years, while our Karaka farm will be integrated with the stud, carrying mares and foals and continuing to support the racing operation."
Marcus Corban will continue to be the stud manager and will be joined by new chief executive Henry Plumptre, former head of Godolphin in Australia. Scott Calder will be the head of sales and nominations whilst Angelique Bridson will run the stud’s marketing department.
Let's drink to that!
North America: Finlandia Vodka is to return as the official vodka of the Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs. Finlandia’s Oaks Lily cocktail recipe, which debuted at the 132nd Kentucky Oaks in 2006, will once again be the signature vodka drink of the Kentucky Oaks.
Satono Aladdin to follow in Pentire’s foosteps
Oceania: A successful long-standing international partnership will surface again in 2018 as Rich Hill Stud in New Zealand stands the G1-winning Japanese miler Satono Aladdin, a son of Deep Impact.
Rich Hill and Shadai first combined with the champion stallion Pentire and their ongoing association includes breeding his son, Prince Of Penzance, who won the 2015 Melbourne Cup.
The passing of Pentire late last year was the catalyst to stand another stallion, and both parties believe Satono Aladdin has the credentials to be a major success in the Southern Hemisphere. He was the winner of eight races, including the prestigious G1 Tokyo Yasuda Kinen over a mile.
New juvenile races on the way
Europe: Arena Racing Company (ARC) has formalised its partnership with the British arm of the European Breeders Fund (British EBF), which will mean further investment in prize money by the British EBF and ARC, including the creation of new 2-year-old races at Yarmouth and Newcastle racecourses.
Uncle Mo colt tops new Barretts sale
North America: Barretts Sales has completed its sole 2-year-olds-in-training sale at Del Mar. The new sale combines the California-based organisation’s March select sale and May open sale into one event.
Seventy horses were sold for a total of $6,221,000, with an average price of $88,871 and a median price of $50,000. The most expensive purchase was an Uncle Mo colt acquired for $600,000 by West Point Thoroughbreds. The leading filly was purchased for $335,000 by Rockingham Ranch.
Good news for smartphone users at Keeneland
North America: Keeneland has announced that Verizon has put in a new permanent antenna system that will double its capacity. The telecommunications giant’s new system enhances network speeds, coverage and capacity at the Lexington track.
“When our fans come to Keeneland, so much of their experience today revolves around the smartphone,” said Brad Lovell, Keeneland vice president and chief information officer.