Gulfstream Park

Gulfstream Park

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Sunshine Millions Purses Cut, Changes Made

Funds to be diverted to other Florida-bred races; horses from outside state invited.

Gulfstream Park is cutting $350,000 from next month's Sunshine Millions card and opening the stakes series to horses bred in New York, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, it was announced Dec. 7.

The track and the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders' and Owners' Association said the purse money would be reallocated to other Florida-bred stakes races during the remainder of the 2015 season. Those stakes include the Florida Sire Stakes series, formerly the Florida Stallion Stakes, run for the first time in its 42-year history earlier this year at Gulfstream Park.

Next year's Sunshine Millions is to be contested Jan. 17. Since 2012, the stakes series has been restricted to Florida-breds after being originally founded as a competition between horses from Florida and California.

Under the new purse structure the Sunshine Millions will be worth $700,000. It features the $250,000 Classic, $150,000 Distaff, $100,000 Sprint, $100,000 Turf, and $100,000 Filly & Mare Turf.

"With such short notice, and with purses coming out of the pool, we will include horses bred in New York, Maryland and Pennsylvania to make the fields on Sunshine Millions Day bigger and more competitive," said P.J. Campo, Gulfstream's vice president of racing and general manager. "We will also look forward to working with these states in the future to bring the Sunshine Millions purses back up to $1 million."

The 2014 Classic was worth $400,000 and was originally scheduled with a $350,000 purse next year. The Distaff carried a $300,000 purse in 2014, and the Sprint, Turf, and Filly & Mare Turf were all worth $150,000. The $150,000 Filly & Mare Sprint was dropped for next year's schedule.