Iceman, winner of the Group 2 Coventry Stakes on the opening day of Royal Ascot, became the first high-profile winner of Owners’ Premiums for British-bred horses.
Owned and bred by David and Patricia Thompson, the owners of Cheveley Park Stud, and sired by their own, late stallion Polar Falcon, Iceman won over £40,000 in prize money for his victory, and over £10,000 as additional money thanks to the new, BHB-funded Owners’ Premium Scheme.
Chris Richardson, Managing Director of Cheveley Park Stud said: “Mr and Mrs Thompson are wholeheartedly behind the BHB Owners’ Premium Scheme, and as such are delighted that Iceman has won the first big payment since its inception. Mr and Mrs Thompson have been such strong supporters of British breeding over the years, and this Scheme is sure to give a significant boost to the industry.”
Richardson went on to say: “It will benefit large and small breeders alike, and we are confident that buyers will be paying close attention to whether horses are eligible for the Scheme, particularly at this year’s yearling sales, and especially given the excellent record of British-bred horses on the Flat this year.”
BHB Industry Marketing Manager Paul Struthers said: “I am delighted with the initial success of the Owners’ Premium Scheme, and that the first big payment came in the first Group race of the season for two-year-olds. BHB expects to pay out around £1m in Owners’ Premiums in 2004, rising to over £7m per annum from 2007 onwards.”
The Scheme, which commenced in January 2004, aims to put British breeding on a more level playing field with Ireland and France. It provides horses bred in Britain and sired by a British-based stallion with a 25% premium on prize money won in most domestic races. This premium rises to 50% for fillies and mares over Jumps, giving an additional boost to National Hunt racing and breeding.
It will assist British mare owners by providing an incentive for owners to bid for British-bred horses because of the premiums, and in turn help British stallion owners by encouraging mare owners to send their mares to British stallions to ensure their progeny are qualified for the Scheme.
For full details of the BHB Owners’ Premium Scheme, go to stage.britishhorseracing.com/breeding