Paul Nicholls: The champion trainer looks at prize money levels at Worcester on Wednesday
Betfair ambassador Paul Nicholls is delighted to hear that there will be more prize money next year after a deal was agreed on the Levy. But he hopes that some tracks start playing ball sooner rather than later.
"Now, we all want to support tracks like Worcester and appreciate that money is tight for some. But not for the owners of certain racecourse groups, it isn’t. Everyone knows who the biggest culprits are, so no need to name and shame them here."
It was great to see that an agreement was reached over the Levy earlier in the week, and that there will be more prize money in the pot next year.
Because we need it, if Worcester on Wednesday is anything to go by.
I was chatting with Paul Barber today and he pointed out to me that when his See More Indians won the Fred Rimell Memorial Novice Chase in 1993, the win prize money to the winner was £4,077.50..
Houblon Des Obeaux won the same race on Wednesday - some 19 years later - and took home just £3,054.06.
In the original Weatherby's forward entry book, that race was originally advertised at £6,000. But at the five day entry stage it had been reduced to £4,700 - and I seem to recall that David Pipe made this very point on Twitter and declined to run his Dynaste for that level of prize money. And I followed suit by not running my entries as well.
The mares' novice hurdle at Ludlow yesterday was worth £4,548.60 to the winner.
But I won both divisions of the maiden hurdle at Worcester on Wednesday and they took home just £3,558.88 combined.
Now, we all want to support tracks like Worcester and appreciate that money is tight for some. But not for the owners of certain racecourse groups, it isn't. Everyone knows who the biggest culprits are, so no need to name and shame them here.
Some tracks, such as Taunton and Fakenham today, do a brilliant job with their prize money levels.
Others, like the owners of Worcester, appear content to bank their collective racecourse profits, exploit our goodwill - and our need to run the horses - and take our appearance for granted.
But, unless the situation is rectified next year, then I can see that goodwill and support coming to a pretty abrupt halt.