AN extra £100,000 will be up for grabs at next month’s Welcome to Yorkshire Ebor Festival after York Racecourse confirmed the latest tranche of prize money increases.
It means the total prize fund for the four-day festival will stand at a record £3.5m – an increase of £250,000 compared to last year.
None of the 25 contests will be worth less than £40,000 and the first six horses home in every race will be eligible for a share of the prize pot.
Significantly Tattersalls, who have sponsored the Musidora Stakes at the Dante Festival for 29 years, have extended their support to include the Group 3 Tattersalls Acomb Stakes on the opening day of the Ebor meeting.
Prize money of £80,000 will also now be on offer to contenders in the Group Three Betfred Strensall and Betfred Melrose Stakes – two of the main support races on Ebor day.
York chief executive William Derby said: “I am delighted that York has once again demonstrated its commitment to invest in prize money and so develop the race programme on the Knavesmire.
“The aim remains to attract the very best horses to York and to stage competitive, compelling racing action.”
Mick Kinane has hailed Vintage Crop as an “iconic stayer” after the Melbourne Cup hero passed away at the age of 27.
Trained by Dermot Weld, Vintage Crop became the first northern hemisphere-based horse in history to win the Melbourne Cup, in 1993, triumphing in the ‘race that stops a nation’ in the hands of Kinane.
Vintage Crop also won two Irish St Legers as well as finishing sixth in the 1993 Champion Hurdle.
Kinane said: “He was an iconic stayer and we created history, so he’ll always have a special place in my heart.”
Chelmsford City racecourse has been approved allocation of 12 ‘start-up’ racedays for next year by the British Horseracing Authority.
The currently closed venue at Great Leighs in Essex has been purchased by a syndicate headed by Fred Done of Betfred.
Meanwhile, Newcastle’s existing Flat meetings can be transferred to their new proposed all-weather track.
Tom Scudamore’s treble at Newton Abbot yesterday came at the expense of 19-times champion AP McCoy who is still stuck on the 4,190 winner mark – one short of the career victories accrued by the retired trainer Martin Pipe, who remains the most successful individual in the history of National Hunt racing.
Roger Charlton’s multiple Group One winner Al Kazeem, the winner of the 2013 Eclipse, is set to make his eagerly-anticipated return to action at Newbury on Saturday after an unsuccessful stud career.