As part of the ARC £1,000,000 All-Weather Bonus initiative, the Horse Of The Month prize for February has been won outright for the first time by the Ian Williams-trained Buxted Too.The five-year-old will receive £40,000 after the bonus has now doubled for both the February and March & April competitions.
In its inaugural season, the ARC £1,000,000 All-Weather Bonus runs from October 18th and will culminate on All-Weather Finals Day, on Good Friday, April 7th.
Points are awarded for finishing in 1st place down to 5th, and the horse with the most overall points at the end of the season will receive a bonus of £100,000 and be crowned Horse of The Year. Points are accrued in a horse’s first three runs in any monthly period at Lingfield Park, Newcastle, Southwell and Newcastle.
Buxted Too has won all three of his starts throughout the last month over 1m4f at Newcastle and Lingfield. The son of Iffraaj has subsequently risen 13lb in the handicap, but he was most impressive last time out when scoring by three-and-a-half lengths at Newcastle so could have further improvement left in him.
Trainer Ian Williams said: “What a great result. He ran a great race when winning first time out in February and has just built on that. He enjoyed the track at Newcastle and has done very well.”
He added: “It’s a great opportunity for horses of his kind, and we were lucky enough to win it in December with Dream Harder. It has become something which is worth targeting and the bonus is something the owners really appreciate. They put a lot of money into racing and to pick up a bonus like this for them and the stable staff is well appreciated from all at Ian Williams Racing.”
The John Butler-trained Inaam, Michael Appleby-trained Sicario, and Tony Caroll-trained Local Bay willall share the second and third prize pots and will receive a bonus of £10,000 each. The trio all won twice and finished runner-up once during February.
Meanwhile, the battle for the ARC Horse of The Year bonus has started to hot up with the prolific Walking On Clouds currently 7pts clear of the 2nd placed Man On A Mission.
£100,000 will be awarded to the horse who tops the Horse of The Year table, but there are further bonus prizes on offer all the way down to 20th position on the leaderboard.