- Published: Friday, 24 February 2017 22:01
The MTHA has worked with Maryland Jockey Club officials to make changes in the condition book designed to reduce the number of race categories and give dirt races a better chance of filling when turf racing begins at Laurel Park in early spring.
The MTHA Purse Committee, along with MJC President and General Manager Sal Sinatra and Racing Secretary Georganne Hale, agreed to the following changes that will take effect with the April condition book.
Here is a rundown on the updated conditions:
- All maiden races will be written for 3-year-olds and up;
- There will be no “beaten” races for a price of less than $16,000 on the turf;
- All dirt and turf races will be written separately—there won’t be turf/alternate dirt races in the book—and they will be staggered;
- Open claiming races on the turf will be alternated price-wise;
- Events for non-winners of four races lifetime with claiming prices of $5,000 or $10,000 will be eliminated;
- The “non-winners of a race other than” allowance and $20,000 claiming races will be written separately for the turf but still combined on the dirt;
- There will be four Maryland-bred or Maryland-sired “non-winners of a race other than” events in the condition book.
The committee also reported that Maryland Million will pay bonuses to the winners of all maiden races if they are eligible to the Maryland Million program. The program is effective March 1.
The bonus schedule is as follows: $2,500 for maiden special weight and maiden-claiming $40,000; $2,000 for maiden-claiming $25,000; $1,500 for maiden-claiming $16,000; and $1,000 for maiden-claiming $10,000. As a reminder, beginning with the March condition book, maiden-claiming races for a tag of $40,000-$32,000 (purse $33,000) will carry the following provision: Maryland-bred or Maryland-sired horses have the option of waiving the claiming price. The MTHA and MJC agreed to the change earlier this year.