THE future of harness racing in New South Wales has never looked rosier with last night’s revelation that prizemoney levels would rise from July 1.
Both ‘A’ and ‘B’ category prizemoney are to increase as part of a regular review listed in the 2021-2023 Industry Strategic Plan.
From July the ‘A’ category meeting races will carry prizemoney of $8,400 while the ‘B’ category races will be worth $6,400.
In lifting the prizemoney, Harness Racing NSW has also recognised the anomaly in the distribution and restored the winner’s share of prizemoney to 54 per cent.
This percentage return to the connections of the winners has been achieved through the use of the ‘10th horse’ fund as Harness Racing NSW distributes 102 per cent of the prizemoney.
No other controlling body in this country distributes more than 100 per cent.
According to HRNSW Chief Executive John Dumesny, the controlling body took into consideration the position of the Harness Racing Club’s committee that a reasonable difference in prizemoney levels was required but at the same time recognised that a differential should be maintained, not expanded.
“Further to that, because of Harness Racing NSW’s endeavours at the national level, the National Ratings Points Matrix has now been changed and base prizemoney races run at the ‘B’ Category meetings will still only attract three rating points,” said Dumesny.
“These improved measures of increased prizemoney, the retention of a reasonable prizemoney differential between the categories of meetings and the status quo in the ratings points are all wins for NSW participants.”
More good news centred around the NSW Breeders Challenge Group 1 finals, which will be increased to $150,000 each – the highest provided for a state-based futurity series in Australia.
These finals are scheduled to be run in October.
“Prizemoney levels at the grass-roots level provide a vital platform for industry sustainability and increasing base prizemoney
permits a broader spread of returns to all participants including owners, trainers, drivers and breeders alike,” said Dumesny.
“Prizemoney will therefore be advertised as $8,568 (A Category) and $6,528 (B Category), which represents increases of 7.1 per cent
and 8.8 per cent respectively on the current prizemoney levels.
“The total additional injection amounts to $1.2m above the FY22 budget released to clubs.”
– MICHAEL COURT