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Incentive plan implemented to attract more horses to Hastings Racecourse

June 22, 2012     E-mail this page to a friend!

In an effort to attract more horses to Hastings Racecourse, the Thoroughbred horsemen’s associations in British Columbia have agreed they will reward horse owners who ship runners from other provinces or countries to race at Hastings this summer.

Beginning on July 1, 2012, owners will receive a $1,000 bonus when a horse they ship from another jurisdiction makes its second start this season at Hastings Racecourse. That same horse will be eligible for a further 25% bonus if it wins its first start and goes on to run at least twice at Hastings.

The 25% bonus applies only to horses that win their first start and is based on first money for that race. Neither bonus applies to stake races. To be eligible, a horse must not have a race in British Columbia for the same owner or ownership group in the past six months.

Forming a united front, the following statements were forthcoming from spokespersons from Hastings Racecourse, British Columbia Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders Association and the Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association of B.C.

Paul Ryneveld, Director of Racing at Hastings Racecourse: “We are doing this to try and beef up our racing stock. All of the associations are in agreement with this plan, so we have their blessing to do this.”

Ole Nielsen, President, BCTOBA: “There is little doubt that we are in competition with every racetrack in the country for race horses. We hope that the incentives we are now providing will enable and encourage more people to take part in racing at Hastings. We are not just targeting owners who haven’t raced horses here but we are also hoping our British Columbia owners will buy horses from other provinces and countries and bring them here. The incentive plan is a way for owners to offset the cost of transporting horses to Hastings from other jurisdictions.”

David Milburn, President, HBPA of BC: “If this program is successful the extra horses will help fill races that otherwise would not have been run. This will enhance racing opportunities for our owners and trainers. It will also increase field sizes and there is nothing more important to racing fans and handicappers.”