Ontario Racing, in association with participating Ontario racetracks, today announced a new pilot project stakes event for the 2020 Standardbred season, open to Ontario Sired two- and three-year-old horses.
“This series provides owners and trainers the chance to showcase rookie and sophomore Ontario Sired hopefuls.” – John Hayes
The Prospect Series, to be contested at racetracks throughout the province, is available to two- and three-year-olds sustained to the Ontario Sires Stakes program.
“It is vital to have a strong and vibrant Ontario Sired stakes program,” said John Hayes, Independent Chair, Ontario Racing. “This series provides owners and trainers the chance to showcase rookie and sophomore Ontario Sired hopefuls to compete for quality purses, while delivering horseplayers attractive wagering opportunities.”
Commencing in May and offering five legs, worth $6,500 each (plus starting fees), the Prospect Series concludes with a $15,000 final – to be contested at Grand River Raceway – for each of the eight divisions.
The starting fee for the Prospect Series is $100.
“Hopefully, this program will provide entertainment for tracks involved and an opportunity for Ontario Sired horses to achieve a higher level of success,” said Ian Fleming, Ontario Racing board member, and race secretary for centralized Ontario Race Office.
The Prospect Series races are subject to the same Grassroots and Gold terms/conditions, with race entry occurring prior to the respective Grassroots or Gold race. Trainers will be afforded the opportunity to enter the Grassroots or Gold race if there are not sufficient entries to card the Prospect Series event.
“This is an excellent platform in which to shine the spotlight on the lucrative Ontario Sired program offered,” said Katherine Curry, Executive Director, Ontario Racing Management. “It is another reason for fans, owners, breeders and racetrack operators throughout the province to look forward to an exciting year of Standardbred racing in Ontario.”
In keeping with its commitment to support a healthy Ontario Sired program, in 2018, Ontario Racing, in partnership with The Raceway at Western Fair District and Flamboro Downs, unveiled a pair of Late Closing Stakes, the Autumn Series and Harvest Series, for Ontario Sired two- and three-year-old Standardbreds.