PACERS:

  1. Grade G is for horses that have never won a race.
  2. Grade G1 is for horses that have one a grade G-race, who start 10Y behind the grade G horses.
  3. Horses that win their G and G1 grades in less than six races will automatically go to F grade, Horses that take six or more attempts will go to G2 and start on outside of G1. Winning in G2 you will automatically go to F (amended 2021).
  4. Grade F horses trail grade G by 30Y and a G1 by 20Y
  5. Grade E trails Grade F by 10Y and so on up to Grade A, and up to A1,A2,A3,A4,A5.
  6. One Win equates to one grade penalty rise.
  7. Grade drops will be given to all horses in Grades A to E for every 6 runs.
  8. A horses’ winning run in all grades will not to count for a run(or drop) (amended 2021)
  9. A winning Grade A horse will have his non-winning runs capped at 2 ie if grade A with 1 run wins he moves to A1 with 1 run,if grade A with 2/3/4/5 runs wins he moves to A1 with 2 runs. As with all other grades A1—A5 winning runs will not be counted. (amended 2021)
  10. Grade drops will be given to the A5-A horses for every 3 runs, regardless of the number of wins.
  11. At the age of 10, a horse is entitled to a grade drop, (or 6 runs, where the case may be), carrying the previous year’s losses, this continues each year thereafter until retirement.
  12. At the age of 12, a horse is entitled to a grade drop after every 4 runs.
  13. 2 year old and 3 three year old trotters are entitled to two wins in each grade in all aged races before moving up a grade. These half grades will be denoted by an + beside the current grade (amended 2021).
  14. BHRC horses racing in Ireland will have any penalty free race wins considered when their grades are being calculated (amended 2019)

TROTTERS:

  1. Grade F to A is 20Y trail between each grade
  2. Grade A to A5 is a 10Y trail between each grade
  3. One win equates to one grade penalty rise
  4. Grade drops will be given to all horses in Grades A to E for every 6 runs, regardless of the number of wins.
  5. A horses’ winning run in all grades will not to count for a run(or drop) (amended 2021)
  6. A winning Grade A horse will have his non-winning runs capped at 2 ie if grade A with 1 run wins he moves to A1 with 1 run,if grade A with 2/3/4/5 runs wins he moves to A1 with 2 runs. As with all other grades A1—A5 winning runs will not be counted. (amended 2021)
  7. Grade drops will be given to the A5-A horses for every 3 runs, regardless of the number of wins.
  8. At the age of 10, a horse is entitled to a grade drop, (or 6 runs, where the case may be), carrying the previous year’s losses, this continues each year thereafter until retirement.
  9. At the age of 12, a horse is entitled to a grade drop after every 4 runs.
  10. 2 year old and 3 three year old trotters are entitled to two wins in each grade in all aged races before moving up a grade. These half grades will be denoted by a + beside the current grade (amended 2021).
  11. Horses racing in Ireland and bought through the Le Trot System, will be grade F with no lifetime win and will be grade E with 1 lifetime win.
  12. The trailing distances between grades will reduce by 50% in mile races.
  13. BHRC horses racing in Ireland will have any penalty free race wins considered when their grades are being calculated (amended 2019).
  14. Trotters who are bred in the IHRA TF studbook, will start at grade G and rise by 50% after each win while racing as a 3,4 & 5-year-old. These trotters may drop between grades from G1* down to G, with every 6 runs (amended 2020)

Handicap System Additional Notes: 

Change to Exercising of Horses (amended 2020):

After careful consideration from both veterinarian advice and observations from international bodies there will be a permanent restriction on warm-ups as of the start of the 2020 racing season. No horse will be allowed to warm up until 20mins before the post time of the race. There will be a 25-minute interval between races and should there be any delay caused, the times of any remaining races will be altered accordingly.

Each horse has 25 minutes prior to their own race to workout/warmup. If an owner does not want to warm-up/work-out, they must be on the track 5 minutes before race time. Gates close after this time. This will allow more adequate time for the integrity committee to carry out pre integrity tests on any horse competing on the day.

Change to Handicap Heats and Finals for Open Class Horses (amended 2020)

Throughout 2019 many stakeholders and public attendees were critical of the heat and final structure being used and that many connections were manoeuvring their horses to set them up on the gate in the weeks leading up to the event. Therefore, taking the best foot forward for our sport, the following was agreed for the 2020 season:

Any race meeting which previously had a handicap heat and final in 2019 will be replaced with the revised system.

  1. The top 16 horses entered (pacers and trotters) will be divided into two elimination races.
  2. The elimination races and the top graded final will be run for the largest purse on offer at the meeting.
  3. 1st – 4th will qualify for the top graded final.
  4. The remaining horses entered will be divided into straight, tired races, with larger purses for higher grades and lower purses for lower grades.
  5. The grade F race in both codes will be the lowest graded race and its purse will be the lowest on the card in line with a premium meeting’ prizemoney.
  6. The division of horses into the specific races, who are on similar grades will be split, based on the winnings of their last five starts.
  7. All races will be run as FFA’s.
  8. All Horses must have one race at an IHRA venue to qualify for All Finals for 4- Year Old and Higher held under IHRA Rules. Must be in same season as Final.

 

Current Grades