The state’s fastest juveniles have spearheaded a surge in QTIS payments, Racing Queensland has announced.
On the eve of Saturday’s $1.6 million QTIS Jewel Raceday on the Gold Coast, RQ confirmed QTIS payments had risen by 27% on a year-on-year basis throughout the first half of FY20, providing added incentive for participants to support Queensland’s racing and breeding industries.
The introduction of QTISx, which provides bonuses on black-type and feature races, has also been well received, as has the removal of age restrictions on QTIS races for non-TAB meetings.
“During the first half of 2019/20, QTIS payments have increased from $5.1 million to $6.5 million which is a significant uplift,” RQ CEO Brendan Parnell said.
“At the start of the racing season, we introduced a range of new QTIS enhancements to make the bonuses more accessible and it’s great for Queensland racing that they are paying bigger dividends.
“We’ve got an exciting crop of two-year-olds, but our three-year-olds have also performed strongly across the state and we’ve also programmed four-year-old bonuses on selected open races.”
Among those to benefit from the incentive scheme is the connections of the Rob Heathcote-trained Rothfire, which will jump as an odds-on favourite in Saturday’s $500,000 Aquis QTIS 2YO Jewel.
Unbeaten in four starts, Rothfire has already claimed $73,500 in QTIS bonuses during his maiden season, with Heathcote upbeat about his star gelding.
Heathcote also confirmed he would be a buyer at next week’s Magic Millions Gold Coast March Yearling Sale, which will be staged on March 16 and 17.
“He’s at Black Caviar and Winks odds and this is his Grand Final which he’s been aimed for since his first start,” Heathcote said.
“It’s the excitement of racing in Queensland – QTIS.
“It’s the success story – I’ve been involved in racing in Queensland for 22 years now – it’s been the winner. It’s been the shining star the whole time and it’s just ramped up to a whole new level now with this QTIS Jewel (Raceday)…coinciding with the Sale next week.
“I would think the most affordable, best horse sale in Australia.”
With more than 400 lots going under the hammer, buyers will be hoping to unearth the next Queensland superstar with the likes of Buffering, Spirit of Boom and I’m a Rippa going through the ring in previous years.
All lots offered have been subject to the first payment for QTIS and buyers will have the opportunity to scoop $67,200 (colts and geldings) and $79,450 (fillies) every Saturday for a Queensland metropolitan two and three-year-old win for fully paid QTIS youngsters.
“Racing in Queensland has improved in leaps and bounds and I honestly believe that the QTIS scheme is the best scheme in Australia to race under,” Thoroughbred Breeders Queensland Association President Basil Nolan said.
“Hopefully the Sale will be success for vendors and buyers…but we’re very grateful to Racing Queensland for the improvements (to QTIS).”
The incentives will continue during the TAB Queensland Racing Carnival with the introduction of the $200,000 QTIS Gold Jewel at Eagle Farm on May 30 which will be staged exclusively for QTIS horses.