Musselburgh: one of two tracks to host a bonus race next SundayPICTURE: John Grossick (racingpost.com/photos)
Sunday racing receives BHA prize-money boost
SUNDAY racing has received a prize-money boost from the BHA with the intention of increasing field sizes from next month.
Two races each Sunday will have a £5,000 bonus added for the winning connections after the BHA agreed to release funds generated from the sale of leasehold fixtures following negotations with the Horsemen's Group and Racecourse Association.
The first two bonus races will take place at Musselburgh and Lingfield next Sunday.
Ruth Quinn, the BHA's director of racing, said: "We are delighted that the proposal to use the BHA Development Fund to offer a further boost to Sunday racing has been approved by the Horsemen's Group and Racecourse Association.
"We are aware that Sunday racing often produces less competitive field sizes and that there are additional costs for Horsemen associated with racing on a Sunday. This scheme forms part of a wider plan to trial ways in which Sunday racing can be improved."
Richard Wayman, chief executive of the Racehorse Owners' Association, added: "The Sunday Bonus Races are a welcome first step in addressing the current shortage of investment in the Sunday racing programme.
"With owners and trainers bearing additional costs on Sundays, the payments will provide a much needed financial incentive that should help to create more competitive and interesting races every week."
There are 103 leasehold fixtures - racedays owned and sold by BHA - scheduled for 2013 with the bonus funds applying to these fixtures. If the meeting is cancelled, the £5,000 bonus returns to the BHA Development Fund.