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2014 OSS, HIP Program Details

Published: February 7, 2014 6:10 pm ET

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At its meeting of January 30, 2014, the Board of the Ontario Racing Commission approved the 2014 Horse Improvement Program (HIP) as recommended by the industry stakeholders and Program staff.

Developed by the Thoroughbred and Standardbred Advisory Groups, the 2014 programs will offer significant incentives to breed and own horses in Ontario. For the most part, the upcoming season will mirror the 2013 programs, providing consistency along with some improvements.

Glenn Sikura, President of Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society, said "We believe this is a solid Program for Ontario horse people right across the province, and one that makes the best use of the resources available to the HIP Program." Standardbred Breeders of Ontario Association president Walter Parkinson stated "We now have in place, a solid five-year planning process that will provide stability to both the Thoroughbred and Standardbred Improvement Programs."

The approved Thoroughbred program includes $4.5 million for restricted overnight racing, $2.8 million to support the Ontario Bred Purse Bonus, $4 million to support the Thoroughbred Stakes Program and $3.4 million for awards for breeders and stallion owners.

In 2014 the Standardbred program projects $16.6 million in purses for the Ontario Sires Stakes Program and $2.1 million for Ontario Sired and Ontario Bred Rewards. Both programs continue to contribute Equine Research funds for projects that support racing and breeding issues.

For more information on Ontario’s Horse Improvement Program, visit the Program’s pages at or contact the Program Administrator at (416) 213-0520.

2014 Ontario Sires Stakes Program Announced

The Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) Program is on track to provide an exciting season of racing. Developed by the Standardbred Advisory Group and approved by the Ontario Racing Commission, the 2014 OSS program will offer over $16.6 million in purses and just over $2.1 million in Ontario Bred and Ontario Sired Rewards.

"We felt it was important to maintain consistency and continuity within the Program," said Paula Wellwood of the Standardbred Advisory Group, "however, there were some elements that we wanted to improve on this year and I think we’ve accomplished that." Program changes for 2014 include setting all Grassroots division purses at $18,000, reinstating the Grassroots Semi-Finals and raising Gold Super Final purses to $250,000. "The Program’s administrative staff has put a great deal of effort into working the numbers to ensure a program that is viable and reflects the new goals of the five-year Horse Racing Partnership Program. This plan works and works well."

Gold Series
- The Gold Mid-Summer Challenge has been eliminated and replaced with a Gold Leg.
- The Gold Program will now consist of five Gold Legs followed by a Gold Super Final.
- The Starting Fee for each Gold Leg will be $800.
- Each Gold Leg will have a total purse of $210,000, which will be split between the required number of divisions. However, in the event of only one division, the purse will be $150,000.
- If six or more divisions are required for a Gold Leg, there will be a minimum purse of $40,000.

Gold Super Final
- Horses will earn points in the five Gold Legs to qualify for the Gold Super Final.
- The purse for the Gold Super Final will be $250,000.

Grassroots Series
- The number of Grassroots events per age/sex/gait remains at six.
- The purse for each Grassroots division will be $18,000.
- The Starting Fee for each Grassroots event will be $350.

Grassroots Semi-Finals and Championships
- Grassroots Semi-Finals have been added back into the program with a purse of $20,000 per division.
- The purse for the Grassroots Championship remains at $50,000.

For more information on Ontario’s Horse Improvement Programs, visit the Program pages at or contact the Program Administrator at (416) 213-0520.

The Ontario Sires Stakes Program was established in 1974, with the objective of encouraging the breeding of quality Standardbred horses and providing an economic incentive for breeders, owners and trainers to breed, buy and race in Ontario. This year marks the 40th year of the OSS, which over the years became the gold standard of sires stakes programs in North America.


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