According to the website of the Jockey Club of the Czech Republic, the enty fees for the Czech One Thousand Guineas, Two Thousand Guineas, Oaks and St Leger will be raised to 5% of the prize money offered for these races. This means that the prize money for the Czech Two Thousand Guineas, which will almost certainly attract 16 runners, the maximum allowed, is likely to be more than fully covered by the fees paid by owners.
In spite of, or perhaps because of, the very difficult financial situation in Italian racing, an extremely important and long-awaited decision was recently adopted by the Italian Pattern Races Committee. Ten out of the 29 pattern races included in the Italian racing calendar for 2013 feature a 13,91% increase in prize money in comparison with 2012.
Hours after the local press reported that the liquidator of Merano Maia Spa had made his choice between the only two offers submitted, the latest news is that there is now a new, third offer!
The organisers of events at Pardubice racecourse will not present the new name1 of the racecourse until next week, but the shape of the coming season is already clear in east Bohemia. Pardubice is preparing to present a racing calendar to the council of the Czech Jockey Club that will be supplemented by an innovation in the form of Friday afternoon racing2.
The 2012 horseracing year in Italy has ended on a rather melancholy note. This should not be a surprise, when one considers the present critical situation in the country and in the sport. The gravity of the economic situation and its impact on the racing sector are best described by just two facts: the government racing authorities reduced their subsidy by 40% this year; and payments of prize money from June 2012 onwards are still pending.
The January 2013 newsletter seems likely to be short, as there is little enough from the recent past to report on, and I do not want to waste the reader’s time with my predictions for the future. I will leave ill-informed forecasting to the multitudes of tweeters, twitterers and futurologists that the blogosphere has created!
The death of Ludvík Raimond, winning rider of the Velka Pardubicka in 1956, was announced on December 18th. He was born on December 13th, 1928 in Lazne Bohdanec, just outside Pardubice. He was introduced to riding as a child, and first rode in the Velka Pardubicka in 1951. In 1954 he won the race on Unkas. Later, he took up show jumping, and was a member of the Czechoslovak national team. As a pensioner, he took up horse breeding.