Columbus, OH --- At a meeting of the Ohio Standardbred Development Fund Committee today, the three-member panel approved increases for 2014 that include guaranteed purses of $200,000 in each of eight Ohio Sire Stakes championships.
Purses for races leading up to the championships were also increased. Each of 32 preliminary races will be worth at least $40,000 if two or more divisions are necessary. If races are not split, horses in eight categories will compete for $45,000.
“I believe the purse increases are important to Ohio owners and breeders,” said OSDF Chairman Richard McClelland, “and they are also sustainable based upon recent developments.”
He was referring to the start of Video Lottery Terminal gaming at Scioto Downs in June of 2012.
This type of gaming will also begin shortly at Northfield Park near Cleveland and at Miami Valley Gaming and Racing south of Dayton.
McClelland also mentioned the distributions of tax proceeds from casino gambling by the Ohio State Racing Commission this year. Overall in 2013, $1.8 million was transferred to the OSDF.
Total Ohio Sire Stakes purses increased from $1,918,200 in 2012 to $3,115,000 this year. Purses in 2014 will reach $3.99 million if nominations and entries are similar to 2013.
However, entries have been projected to increase enough to result in 72-75 races being held to determine qualifiers to the championships, up from 63 races this year.
This will result in record total purses of approximately $4.4 million. Ohio Sire Stakes purses have exceeded $4 million only in 2000.
Although the OSDF Committee did not determine actual dates of all sire stakes races next year, it did award the championships to Scioto Downs and the track is expected to host them on Saturday (Sept. 6).
The OSDF also discussed racing conditions next year, including the possibility of replacing nominating and sustaining payments that accompany entries with a one-time payment due on March 15.
This item and others will be addressed by the OSDF Committee when it meets next in Columbus during December.