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NZ$3m Kelt Prize & Aust Cox Plate Link
Hawke's Bay merchant banker Sam Kelt announced the flagship NZ race he sponsors, the NZ$2 million weight-for-age Gr1 Kelt Capital Stakes (2040m) at Hastings will boast an increased stake to NZ$3 million "if not next year, then the year after" reported anzbloodstocknews.com. Kelt said NZ's richest race (won last weekend by multiple Gr1-winning Australian-bred 5YO mare Princess Coup) will "become part of a 2-race series with the A$3 million Cox Plate (2040m at Moonee Valley) which would carry a $1 million bonus to connections of a horse that could win both races". Kelt added: "We're going to create a template for world racing. We are not the Cox Plate & we never will be; but it has been my aim to create an event to stand alongside it. For the last 2 years the Kelt Capital Stakes has been worth NZ$2 million. We are going to NZ$3 million & along with the Moonee Valley Racing Club, we are going to partner to create a series which will hopefully, very quickly, carry a bonus of $1 million for the winner of both races. That's going to be a great catalyst for bringing horses from around the world, firstly from Australia & NZ, to come here & compete for NZ$3 million & then run for A$3 million in the Cox Plate. It's a wonderful thing for us to be part of." Kelt began sponsoring the Kelt Stakes in 1991 (when Castletown won the initial race worth NZ$75,000).