Record number of million dollar races to be hosted at Flemington
The Victoria Racing Club (VRC) welcomes the announcement by Racing Victoria (RV) today that minimum prizemoney levels will be increased for the 2021-22 season and beyond, including 43 black-type races at Flemington Racecourse.
Thirteen races at Flemington will be worth a million dollars or more next season, a record for racing Headquarters.The most notable increase is to the Group 1 Seppelt Wines Newmarket Handicap (1200m), with Australia’s most prestigious Group 1 sprint race elevated to $1.5 million from $1.25 million. Another world-class sprint at Flemington is the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m), which will have million-dollar status for the first time in 2022.
The Group 1 TAB Turnbull Stakes (2000m), which has been won in recent years by stars of the turf including Hartnell, Winx and Verry Elleegant, will now offer prizemoney of $750,000, up from $500,000.
Six races over the Melbourne Cup Carnival will see prizemoney levels return to pre-COVID-19 levels including the Group 1 Darley Sprint Classic (1200m) and Group 1 Kennedy Cantala (1600m) which will both be worth $2 million.
Flemington’s strong program for stayers is further bolstered by the news that Listed The Andrew Ramsden (2800m) will now be worth $500,000, in addition to offering ballot exemption to the winner for the Lexus Melbourne Cup. Furthermore, the time-honoured Listed VRC St Leger (2800m) has increased to $300,000 while the Listed Bagot Handicap (2800m) has been set at $200,000.
The Listed VRC-CRV Winter Championship Series Final (1600m) will continue to be a feature of Flemington Finals Race Day, with increased prizemoney of $200,000 from next year.
Most of the races to receive more prizemoney hold Group or Listed status, with the Mahogany Challenge Final (2500m) and Flemington Cup 1849 (2800m) also set to offer increased prizemoney of $200,000 and $175,000 respectively, reflecting their position as highlights of the winter racing program at Flemington even though they are not yet black-type races.
VRC Chief Executive Officer Steve Rosich said the prizemoney boost reaffirmed Flemington’s position as Australia’s premier racecourse.
“The VRC is very pleased to see prizemoney levels lifted for many key races at Flemington and we now have a record number of million-dollar races in 2021-22 at 13,” Mr Rosich said.
“Prizemoney underpins the racing program at Flemington and the VRC thanks Racing Victoria for its support in ensuring Flemington maintains its status as a world-class racing destination.
“These increases have been injected into a wide range of races across different class restrictions, distances and age groups, including Group 1 feature races, providing a greater reward for owners with horses competing at Flemington “That benefit flows to participants, members and all racing fans by attracting the best trainers, jockeys and horses to Flemington for 24 premium meetings each season.”
RV has increased minimum prizemoney at all levels of black-type racing with Group 1, 2, 3 and Listed races now offering the highest minimum levels anywhere in Australia. From the start of the 2021-22 season, all Victorian Group 1 races will offer minimum prizemoney of $750,000 (up from $500,000), all Group 2 races to offer $300,000 (up from $200,000), and all Listed races to offer $160,000 (up from $140,000).