Racing Victoria has injected an additional $15.5m into next season’s Victorian prize money disbursements, taking the total prize money and bonuses above the $200m level for the first time.
The increases were spread across several feature races:
- MRC Memsie Stakes (now $1m)
- VRC Maybe Diva Stakes (now $750k)
- MRC Underwood Stakes (now $750k)
- MRC Caulfield Stakes (now $1m)
- MRC Caulfield Guineas (now $2m)
- VRC Coolmore Stud Stakes (now $1m)
- VRC Australian Guineas (now $1m).
We are advocate of a greater spread of prizemoney across all levels of racing, rather than solely concentrating on the top end. So in our view, the most important increases are in the mid-tier and lower level races.
Standard Saturday metropolitan races are now worth a minimum $100k. This rewards Victorian owners at least equal to owners in New South Wales – in fact, a little better as owners receive a higher percentage of total prize money (85% in VIC, 81.65% in NSW).
Maiden races receive a $2k bump, with standard maidens up to $22k, premium maidens (usually Wednesday and Sunday) up to $25k and night maidens up to $27k.
Saturday races over 2000m and further now come with a minimum $120k purse, rewarding patient owners and trainers with horses that mature with age and excel over a distance.
Last but not least, there is an allocation of 1% of prizemoney to both jockey welfare and equine welfare to fund investment in programs, services and initiatives. We hope to see more details about this in coming weeks and months, and will be keen to support initiatives and research.