Lucrative two-year-old opportunities in Naas’s richest ever race

19 February 2020


Irish EBF Ballyhane 800 x 600 Final
Karl Burke, Johnny Murtagh, Dermot Cantillon, Joe Foley, Nessa Joyce, and Kevin Ryan at the launch of the €200,000 Irish EBF Ballyhane Stakes


The Irish EBF and Ballyhane Stud are joining forces behind the richest ever race run at Naas Racecourse. The six-furlong Irish EBF Ballyhane Stakes will be run on Bank Holiday Monday, 3rd August 2020 at Naas Racecourse and the early entry deadline is Wednesday 26th February at 12 noon. The race is open to two-year-olds by an EBF-registered sire whose median price is no more than €75,000.

Ballyhane Stud will offer a €50,000 bonus to the winning connections of the new €200,000 Irish EBF Ballyhane Stakes if the winner is by a Ballyhane sire. In addition, Ballyhane Stud will give the winning breeder a free nomination to a Ballyhane stallion in 2021.

Joe Foley, owner of Ballyhane Stud, said:I’m delighted to support the Irish EBF Ballyhane Stakes, a race which should be an exciting addition to the calendar. It’s a huge pot for owners and trainers to target and the €50k bonus for a Ballyhane sired winner is our way of rewarding supporters of our stallions.”

UK Trainer Karl Burke was present for the launch and commented: “I have some lovely 2 year olds this year and I’ll definitely be targeting some of them at this new race. It’s a great prize and Naas has been a lucky track for me. The team at Naas do an excellent job at looking after their UK connections. Not only do they provide top class hospitality to the owners but also provide accommodation for the stable staff.”

Johnny Murtagh commented:“The Ballyhane Stakes is a great initiative for 2020 in the 2 year old racing calendar. It had a significant influence on my purchasing decisions at the yearling sales last autumn. It’s a great opportunity for everyone in racing to be in with a shout of winning a hugely valuable race. It also comes at a great time of the year, before the yearling sales of 2020.”

Speaking about the announcement, John O’Connor, Chairman, Irish EBF, said:The concept behind the race is to offer connections of EBF eligible two-year-olds, where their sire’s median price is no more than €75,000, a lucrative race where they are competing against other similar valued horses who are either home breds or auction bought two-year-olds. By capping the sire’s median price, giving weight allowances to lower sire median prices and with the added incentive of the €50,000 Ballyhane Stud bonus, it creates more opportunities for two-year-olds and it is great to be part of something special.”

List of sires with EBF-eligible 2yos that can enter the race: Median Sire List EBF Ballyhane race

For Further Information:

Nessa Joyce, Manager, Irish European Breeders’ Fund
Greenhills, Kill, Naas, Co Kildare, W91 FY62
M: +353 85 7590970, E: [email protected]

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