Simulcast and on-track players at Santa Anita Park have been buoyed by recent moves to increase filed size at the iconic California racing venue that now includes a first-ever “Ship and Stay” program, designed to attract out-of-state horsemen and to incentivize them to keep running in California throughout the new year.
The Santa Anita Winter Meet conducts its traditional opening Tuesday, Dec. 26th.
The program, funded solely by Santa Anita and The Stronach Group (TSG), is modeled after Del Mar's successful “Ship and Win” program and provides on-going bonuses to individual trainers and owners who bring horses to Santa Anita from out of state. Bonuses are paid to the connections that originally brought them to California for their first three starts. These bonuses will now be paid even if the horse is claimed.
Santa Anita Vice President of Racing, Rick Hammerle said, “Field size is a major concern for us and by undertaking this new program, we're hoping to be able to shore up our inventory at all levels.”
Ship and Stay rules include:
– All eligible horses must register in the Santa Anita Racing Office.
– Available to horses that have last started outside of California and have not raced in California over the past 12 months.
– “Ship & Stay” will provide a 20 percent purse bonus for a horse's first start at Santa Anita, divided between owner and trainer. (Does not include Cal-bred bonus).
– A ten percent purse bonus, or $1,000, whichever is higher, will be provided for each individual horse's second and third start. These monies are to be divided between the original owner and trainer that brought the horse to California.