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Total Breeders’ Cup World Championship purses increased to $20 million


May 3, 2006     E-mail this page to a friend!

NTRA, May 2 - Officials of Breeders' Cup Limited and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced today that total purses for the Breeders' Cup World Championships have been raised to $20 million, an increase of $6 million from last year.

Purses will be increased in seven of the eight 2006 Breeders' Cup races, which will be held on Saturday, November 4 at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky, and will be televised live by ESPN.

The Breeders' Cup Classic - Powered by Dodge will receive a $1 million purse increase to $5 million this year. The Classic, North America's richest race and often a determining factor in Horse of the Year honors, was contested for $3 million from 1984-1995 and for $4 million from 1996-2005. The eight Breeders' Cup races are:

$20 Million Breeders' Cup World Championships
Race / 2005 Purse / 2006 Purse / Distance
Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies - $1 million - $2 million -1 1/16 miles
Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile - $1.5 million - $2 million - 1 1/16 miles
Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf - $1 million - $2 million - 1 3/8 miles
TVG Breeders' Cup Sprint - $1 million - $2 million - 6 furlongs
NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile - $1.5 million - $2 million - 1 mile (turf)
Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Distaff - $2 million - $2 million - 1 1/8 miles
John Deere Breeders' Cup Turf - $2 million - $3 million - 1 1/2 miles
Breeders' Cup Classic - Powered by Dodge - $4 million - $5 million - 1 1/4 miles

Breeders' Cup purses have now doubled since the inaugural $10 million day in 1984. The last purse increases took place prior to the 2003 event, when purses for the Breeders' Cup Mile and the Breeders' Cup Juvenile were each raised from $1 million to $1.5 million.

"Raising the purses to unprecedented levels makes the Breeders' Cup property more valuable than at any time in our history, said D. G. Van Clief, Jr., Breeders' Cup President and NTRA Commissioner. "We feel that these purse increases will further strengthen domestic and international participation in our races, which is vital for the continued growth and expansion of the event as the pre-eminent day of global horse racing. We extend our gratitude to foal and stallion nominators who have supported us over the years and made this $20 million Breeders' Cup a reality."

In addition to the purse increases, there will be reductions in Breeders' Cup World Championships race entry fees beginning this year:

* Entry fees for all Breeders' Cup-nominated horses have been reduced from 3% to 2.5% of the total purse of a Breeders' Cup race.
* Supplemental fees for horses whose sires were not nominated to the Breeders' Cup have been reduced from 20% to 15% of the purse for a Breeders' Cup race.
* Owners of non-nominated horses by Breeders' Cup-nominated stallions will continue to pay 9 percent of the total purse for entry into a Breeders' Cup race.

For the first time Foal and Stallion nominator awards will be distributed for horses finishing in fourth and fifth place in a Breeders' Cup race.

The raising of Breeders' Cup World Championships purses follows the April 21 Breeders' Cup Limited announcement that, for the first time, allows horses of racing age to be nominated to the Breeders' Cup Program. Instead of paying supplemental fees, owners of a non-nominated horse, sired by a Breeders' Cup, European Breeders' Fund (EBF) or Common Fund stallion nominated in the year of conception, may now pay a one-time, $150,000 late nomination fee to place that horse into the Breeders' Cup program for its entire racing career.

Owners of a Thoroughbred sired by a non-nominated Breeders' Cup, EBF or Common Fund stallion in the year of conception may also secure nomination into the Breeders' Cup Program with a one-time, $250,000 late nomination payment to Breeders' Cup Ltd. Owners of those late nominees would then pay standard entry fees to run in the Championships.

The NTRA is a broad-based coalition of horseracing interests, including the American Quarter Horse Association, charged with increasing popularity of horseracing and improving economic conditions for industry participants. The NTRA and Breeders' Cup Limited also administer the Breeders' Cup World Championships, Thoroughbred racing's year-end Championships consisting of eight races and $20 million in purses and awards and the Breeders' Cup Stakes Program. The NTRA has offices in Lexington, Ky., and New York City. NTRA press releases appear on the NTRA Web site, ntra.com, and at the Web site for the Breeders' Cup World Championships, breederscup.com.