The Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association and Hawthorne Race Course have agreed to pay purses to the bottom finisher in all races beginning with the Friday, April 1, racing card.
According to a release from the track, 1% of the base purse will be paid to finishers from sixth through last in every race. Of the remaining purse total, purses will be distributed in the 60-20-11-6-3 percetnage breakdown for first through fifth place in every race.
“My feeling is we need to make some changes to encourage more participation in races while allowing owners the ability to cover jockeys fees and some other race-day related costs at a minimum,” said Hawthorne assistant general manager Jim Miller. “I’m not going to lie, this spring meet has been a struggle to fill races. There are more tracks running, tracks with additional gaming infused purses and this year we have had to compete for horses from another track in our own state, something we didn’t have last year. It has been tough, but I feel this will help bring more incentives to horsemen to race at Hawthorne.”