Singapore drops stakes levels, two Group races discontinued and the proposed International Races placed on hold

In a major announcement the Singapore Turf Club (STC) said on Thursday that the prizemoney for non-Feature races will drop significantly from January 1st, 2019, two Singapore Group races will be discontinued and the proposed reestablishment of the International Races next May has been placed on hold.

Class 1 stakes will drop from $125,000 down to $100,000, Class 2 stakes drop from $100,000 to $85,000 and Class 3 from $80,000 to $70,000. There will no longer be Class 4 Premier races with all Class 4 races to be run at $50,000, Class 5 increases from $20,000 to $30,000 and Restricted Maiden/Noice drops from $85,000 to $75,000.

Race Class
Present Prizemoney Revised Prizemoney
Class 1   $125,000    $100,000
Class 2   $100,000    $  85,000
Class 3   $  80,000    $  70,000
Class 4 Premier   $  60,000    $  50,000
Class 4 Non-Premier   $  45,000
Class 5   $  20,000    $  30,000
Kranji Stakes D   $  38,000    $  38,000
Maiden/Open Maiden   $  20,000    $  20,000
Restricted Maiden/Novice   $  85,000    $  75,000

The STC said that to help fund the 50% increase in prizemoney for the Class 5 races, the prizemoney of races in Classes 1, 2 and 3 and Restricted Maiden/Novice will be adjusted accordingly.

The two Singapore Group races to go are the Group 1 Patron’s Bowl and the Group 3 Garden City Trophy. The Singapore Four-Year-Old Challenge will also be discontinued as retaining the Series would require one of the remaining feature races to be converted to a race restricted to 4 years old only.  This would reduce the opportunities for horses in other age groups.

Similarly, the discontinuation of the Garden City Trophy will require the Merlion Trophy to be programmed in the second half of the year to cater for sprinters and as such, the Singapore Sprint Series will be discontinued as well.

The Singapore Three-Year-Old Challenge (comprising Singapore 3YO Sprint, Singapore 3YO Classic and Singapore Guineas) and the Singapore Triple Crown (comprising the Raffles Cup, Queen Elizabeth II Cup and Singapore Gold Cup) will be retained. 

The STC said in a statement that the International Races due for May 25th has been placed on hold 'due to the restructuring of racing in Singapore and the transfer of wagering operations on horse racing to Singapore Pools'.

However, similar to this year, the Kranji Mile will remain as an invitational race with prizemoney of $1.5 million.  The Lion City Cup will remain as Singapore Group 1 race restricted to Singapore horses only with prizemoney of $1 million. 

The STC said that stakes of the remaining feature races are unchanged, but will be reviewed in mid-2019.  However, with effect from 1 January 2019, the entry fees collected for feature races will no longer be added to the prizemonies of the respective feature races.

The STC will continue to run about 800 races over 87 race meetings.  Tuesday night race meetings will be discontinued in 2019.  However, there will be three Saturday twilight meetings with the first race at about 4 pm.  These Saturday twilight meetings will be held on 25 May 2019, 1 June 2019 and 15 June 2019.

The Mark Walker trained Elite Invincible (Benny Woodworth) winning last Sunday's Singapore Gold Cup, picture Singapore Turf Club