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This past week, Executive Director Glen Berman and I participated in a teleconference call with the leadership of the FTBOA.
The focus of this call was to finalize this year’s Sire Stakes and FTBOA Florida-bred funding of South Florida racing.
The following was the FHBPA’s strategy.
To maximize the FTBOA’s financial contribution to support Florida-bred races/purses.
The FTBOA by law must return between 17% and 40% of the money sent to them by Gulfstream Park.
The amount of money sent to the FTBOA from Gulfstream Park is roughly $6,000,000.
The FTBOA has over 2.2 million dollars that could be put back into Gulfstream Florida-bred purses this year.
This figure represents the near maximum allowed by law (40% of $6,000,000).
The Sire Stakes is limited to and benefits a small pool of nominated horses/breeders.
The FTBOA has the financial ability to fund this series on their own without an additional FHBPA purse supplement.
To encourage the FTBOA to fund Florida-bred races to the maximum of their statutory requirement (40% of the $6,000,000 received from Gulfstream/FHBPA).
In addition to and separate from the FTBOA races, to use the horsemen’s purse money ($1,000,000) and create a 10 race Florida-bred/preferred program that supports and gives additional strength to the Florida-bred program.
This concept would allow and would keep the Stallion Series fundamentally intact.
This plan allows both the two and three-year-old Sire Stakes races to remain solidly in place.
This new proposal would then expand the Florida-bred program beyond where it is with a series of 10 additional races.
The FHBPA believes this is a wise use of horsemen purse money while creating more opportunities and windows of participation for all Florida-breds.
An example of how the Sire Stakes could be funded with the FTBOA’s maximum contribution of $2,200,000 (nearly 40% of $6,000,000 received).
Two-year-old races:
$150,000 for the first leg. $250,000 for the second leg and $400,000 for the third leg of the Sire Stakes.
There would be a race for fillies and colts totaling $1,600,000.
Three-year-old races:
$100,000 for 6 races total with 3 for colts and 3 for fillies equaling $600,000.
The total amount of funding from the FTBOA would equal the $2,200,000 that the organization previously stated that they could contribute and nearly brings them to maximum contribution.
The FHBPA and Gulfstream Park would then create 10 ADDITIONAL Florida-bred/preferred races at $100,000 apiece ($1,000,000) to support the Florida-bred program.
The Results of the meeting:
The FTBOA does not agree.
The FTBOA insists that if the FHBPA/Gulfstream do not put additional purse money directly into FTBOA races they will cut their purse funding to the statutory minimum and reduce their own racing programs. In response, the FTBOA plans to eliminate the three year old races of the Sire Stakes and reduce funding across the board of their entire racing program.
The FHBPA is aware that many of our members are Florida-based owners, breeders, and trainers.
We have made a commitment to use $1,000,000 of purse money to create a new Florida-bred/preferred series of stake races.
The FHBPA has signed a contractual agreement with Gulfstream and will go forward with the creation of this new and supportive Florida-bred/preferred series.
Bill White
FHBPA  President