The Maryland Million Day purses will be increased by $300,000 for the 2005 event, making it the richest state sire stakes in the country. In addition to the event day purse hike, an additional $300,000 will fund other racing opportunities next year.
The 2005 event is scheduled to be the highlight of the fall racing season, and will showcase the new courses at Laurel Park.
"Our goal for many years has been to be the Maryland Millions," said Mike Pons, president of Maryland Million Ltd. "And we are on our way with this additional purse money in 2005."
The increased purse money comes from a portion of revenue from in-state wagering on Maryland races. Gov. Robert Ehrlich Jr. singed the bill into law after it passed both the house and senate. Key support for the legislation came from Harford County legislators Sen. J. Robert Hooper (R-35) and Delegate Barry Glassman (R -- 35A).
The nomination deadline for foals and stallions is Dec. 31. A fee of $600 is due for yearlings (2003 foals) or the last option of $1,500 due by May 31. The fee of $250 is due to fully nominate the foals of 2004. The same deadline applies for nominating stallions so that foals conceived during the 2005 breeding season are eligible to the program. The stallion nomination fee is equal to the advertised stud fee with a minimum of $500.