12/22/2015 11:46AM

$100,000 races for juveniles offered in spring


OZONE PARK, N.Y. – In an attempt to stimulate early activity in its 2-year-old program, the New York Racing Association plans to offer $100,000 purses for six maiden juvenile races – three for females and three for males – in April and May. The usual purse for a maiden race at that time of year is $75,000.

The three races in each division are designed to produce runners for the Astoria and Tremont stakes on June 9 and 10 at Belmont Park. The maiden races will be known as the Astoria Trial A, B, and C and the Tremont Trial A, B, and C.

The first of those maiden races will be scheduled at Aqueduct for April 20 (females) and April 21 (males) and be run at 4 1/2 furlongs over the main track. The ensuing maiden races will be scheduled at Belmont Park for May 4-5 and then May 18-19 and run at five furlongs.

The fields are limited to 10 starters, and all runners will be paid. The winner’s share is $50,000. In the event that there are 10 starters, finishers 7-10 would split $3,500, or receive $875 each.

Last spring, only one race for 2-year-old fillies and none for males filled at Aqueduct. At Belmont, there was only one maiden race for each gender before the stakes were run.

NYRA also will offer a bonus to the owner and trainer of the first three finishers in all maiden juvenile races for New York-breds conducted at the Aqueduct spring and Belmont Park spring-summer meetings.

In addition to the regular purse payments, the owners of the winner of a New York-bred maiden race would get a $9,000 bonus, the owner of the runner-up would receive a $4,500 bonus, and the owner of the third-place finisher would get $2,500 a bonus. The trainers’ bonuses for the top three finishers would be $4,000, $3,000, and $2,000.

The connections of New York-breds who finish first, second, or third in open maiden races also are eligible to receive the same bonuses.

The New York Breeding Fund is contributing $200,000 to help fund these bonuses.