Dream Ahead: landed a Racing Post Breeze-up bonus for connectionsPICTURE: Scoopy Dyga
Racing Post Breeze-up Bonus comes to an end
THE ground-breaking breeze-up bonus scheme - sponsored by the Racing Post - has been brought to a close following two successful years.
Launched in 2009, the widely praised scheme has paid out £1 million in bonuses to horses from nine countries.
The breeze-up scheme was an acknowledged harbinger for the Racing Post Yearling Bonus scheme, which continues this year. A statement from the organisers of the breeze-up scheme said: "With the RPYB well-established and with the vast majority of breeze-up candidates eligible for it, the decision was recently taken to not renew the breeze-up bonus scheme in 2011.
"We would like to thank everybody for their terrific support in making this innovative scheme work so well over the last two seasons. Since the idea of a bonus scheme was first mooted we have enjoyed terrific support from vendors, sales companies, and the many sponsors who stepped to make sure that the idea got off the ground in the first year. Our thanks also go to the Racing Post, who were our title sponsors in the second year.
"The enthusiasm with which owners, trainers and agents embraced the idea played a pivotal role in making it such a success."
The breeze-up bonus was created after a challenging and daunting round of yearling sales in 2008, which co-incided with some of the peaks of the financial crisis. A number of leading figures from the breeze-up circuit - among them Con Marnane, Willie Browne, Emma O'Gorman and Jim McCartan - combined to create a stimulus packageto boost trade at the following spring's breeze-up sales.
In its first year in 2009 the scheme provided a £10,000 cheque to the first 40 breeze-up horses to win a maiden, while 20 more horses picked up £5,000 cheques for victories in nurseries, claimers or sellers.
The 2010 scheme was restructured to offer more horses the chance of picking up a bonus, so that it paid out £5,000 for a first win and the same amount if a breeze-up bought horse won a second race.
It was a particularly fruitful season for owners who had horses that were both breeze-up and yearling bonus eligible - juveniles such as Penny's Pearl and Jolly Snake each netted acombined £15,000 bonus for their maiden success.
Among the high profile runners to landed breeze-up bonuses were Dream Ahead, Silver Grecian, Lady Darshaan, Sand Vixen, Puff, Emerald Commander, Native Khan, New Planet and Marine Commando.
The Noel Wilson-trained Lady Lube Rye was the first ever breeze-up bonus winner when she struck at Redcar on April 30th 2009.