Ontario Racing Says New Mare Programs are Promising

The Mare Recruitment and Purchase Programs have been established in the hopes of strengthening the province’s Thoroughbred breeding and racing industry.

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The Mare Recruitment and Purchase Programs have been established in the hopes of strengthening the province’s Thoroughbred breeding and racing industry.

By: Ontario Racing |

Last autumn, Ontario Racing (OR) announced two new Thoroughbred Horse Improvement Programs (TIP) aimed at strengthening the province’s breeding and racing industry. The industry association today offered an update on the Mare Recruitment Program (MRP) and the Mare Purchase Program (MPP).

Through January 14, paperwork for a total of 79 in-foal mares has been submitted through the MRP, which offers $5,000 (CDN) to horsepeople to bring an in-foal mare to Ontario to foal. Of these, 42 have submitted to breed the mare back to a registered Ontario Sire during the 2020-21 breeding season, an incentive worth $2,500 (CDN).

As a result, the Mare Recruitment Program, which offered a $500,000 cap in incentives, is fully subscribed for the 2019-20 breeding season.

A total of 17 submissions have been received, so far, for the Mare Purchase Program (MPP), which offers eligible applicants 50 percent of the purchase price of an in-foal broodmare, up to a maximum of $15,000 (CDN), at various recognized pubic auctions. Currently, seven will be sent to a registered Ontario sire, also a $2,500 (CDN) incentive.

“Ontario Racing is extremely pleased with the success of the Mare Recruitment Program and the Mare Purchase Program,” said David Anderson, longtime breeder-owner and Ontario Racing (OR) board member. “All sectors of the province’s racing and breeding industry, through the Thoroughbred Horse Improvement Program, have worked collaboratively in creating these impactful investment concepts, which have been met with significant enthusiasm by the marketplace.”

Opportunities to participate in the Mare Purchase Program, which also offered a $500,000 cap in incentives, still exist at the Keeneland January Horses of All Ages Sale in Lexington, Kentucky (January 13-16, 2020), the OBS Winter Mixed Sale in Ocala, Florida (January 28-29, 2020) and the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky Winter Mixed Sale, also in Lexington (February 10-11, 2020).

“The fully-subscribed Mare Recruitment Program has been enthusiastically embraced by horsepeople,” said John Hayes, Independent Chair, Ontario Racing. “Ontario Racing’s Horse Improvement Program committees, covering all breeds, continue to look at ideas on how to support the province’s racing and breeding sectors. We look forward to further feedback from breeders and owners on the MRP and MPP as the programs evolve.”

Further details of the Mare Purchase Program and Mare Recruitment Programs including criteria, as well as other notable Ontario Racing and TIP plans, are available at ontarioracing.com/Industry/Thoroughbred-Improvement-Program.

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