It’s payday for many horse breeders in the commonwealth as the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) awards $14.3 million to qualified breeders through the Thoroughbred Breeders’ Incentive Fund.

The incentive fund requires owners to board mares in Kentucky from the time of breeding until the birth of the foal. Incentive payments are based on the foal’s eventual winnings on the racetrack. Last year, nearly 3,500 races were won by a Kentucky-bred receiving a breeder award.

In a year when the Kentucky Derby and Oaks were raced in the fall and the Preakness a month later, Kentucky-breds won over 245 graded stakes in the United States and 18 group races in Canada, England, France and Ireland.  Those victories include Authentic‘s success in the Kentucky Derby, Shedaresthedevil’s win in the Kentucky Oaks and Swiss Skydiver’s win in the Preakness.

“We need the commonwealth’s signature horse industry to stay strong and engaged as we sprint out of the COVID-19 pandemic. On top of being part of our history, the industry supports many Kentucky families today and will continue to draw new visitors to the state in the future,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “Thanks to Kentucky breeders and a strong racing circuit enhanced by historical horse racing, Kentucky remains a leader in breeding with more stallions than any other state, and representing 42 percent of the foal crop in North America.”

Since its inception in 2006, more than $184 million has been awarded to Kentucky breeders for winning eligible races across the globe. The incentive fund helps ensure the strength and growth of the horse industry in Kentucky. The fund receives 80 percent of the 6 percent sales tax paid when breeding a stallion to a mare in the commonwealth. In addition, the 2020 fund received $1.1 million from wagers on historical horse racing.





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