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HK Racing Director Slams VRC Over $600k Bonus
An “international race club row could threaten the much-anticipated clash between champions Black Caviar & Rocket Man at Flemington this Spring,” reported The Daily Telegraph. The Hong Kong Jockey Club “chided the Victoria Racing Club for offering bonuses to host the 1st showdown between the world's 2 best sprinters. HKJC executive director of racing Bill Nader said the VRC was “frustrated & desperate to make an impression” in its decision to offer a $600,000 bonus if Rocket Man won the Gr1 Patinack Farm Classic down Flemington's “straight 6” (1200m) on November 5. (Black Caviar, unbeaten in 13 career starts & rated the world's best sprinter, does not qualify for the bonus as she has not raced overseas.) Nader commented: “Being the anchor leg & a responsible partner in the Global Sprint Challenge, offering a bonus to lure GSC winners or targeted horses is not, in our view, in the spirit of the arrangement. We would not want to compete in that way at the expense of another series partner. Great horses can only run in so many races & participation in one can be at the exclusion of another. The VRC has been unable to (attract overseas runners with box-office appeal) in recent years, hampered by sub-standard prize-money & difficult quarantine protocols, so they look at the situation differently than the HKJC."