The New South Wales Harness Racing Club has announced a prizemoney increase from $5,500 to $7,000 for the Tuesday races run by the Club at Tabcorp Park Menangle effective from July 1.
This is a significant 27% elevation in the prizemoney offered and is a result of the recent victory in the Racefields litigation.
The announcement however also carried the decision by the Club to withdraw the distribution of petrol cards for each starter which had been in operation for the past year.
“The Directors looked at options available to the Club with the win in the High Court with Racefields and felt that the owners of the lowergrade horses would be best served with an increase in prizemoney,” NSWHRC Chief Executive John Dumesny stated.
“races received a massive boost in prizemoney from the proceeds of investments from the Harold Park sale.”
“As the entire industry is now aware we were living beyond our funds over the past few years waiting on a win in the Courts.
“Now that we have that win we can edge our prizemoney forward.”
The Menangle licence meetings held on a Tuesday (160 races) are funded at Tier 2 level by HRNSW but the Club will put additional funding ($2,000 per race) towards these races so that the same level of prizemoney is offered for all Tuesday meetings. Tabcorp Park Menangle now offers the highest levels of prizemoney for all grades of horses nationally.
The metropolitan minimum level is $22,000 per race and the career minimum level is $7,000.
The total prizemoney budget for FY 2012/13 is $16.2 million. This is an increase of $3.5 million or 28% above the current financial year prizemoney distribution.
“The Directors will be considering initiatives at their next Board Meeting which will focus on the Country Series,” Dumesny said.
“With the constantly-changing wagering landscape, the Directors also need to be satisfied that any prizemoney increases can be sustained into the coming years.
“Hopefully in the next financial year our wagering income will be not be influenced by any matter outside of our control.
“We have had the telecast imbroglio, equine influenza and our legal battles with Racefields over the past few years.
“The Club elected to withdraw the distribution of the petrol cards as on the whole it wasn’t considered effective.
“There were representations from owners and trainers considered as well as the fact many participants believed there was an inequality around which stables received the bulk of the cards and the distances they travelled.
“All factors were weighed up before it was declared to call and end to the incentive.” Dumesny concluded.
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