Frequently Asked Questions

Some frequently asked questions regarding Pennsylvania’s Breeding Fund Program

1. How does a horse become eligible to participate in the PA-Bred Program?

All registered Pennsylvania-Breds are eligible to participate. Any Thoroughbred foaled in Pennsylvania is automatically a PA-Bred. However, a registered Pennsylvania-Bred is one who is registered with the PHBA and all horses must be registered in order to be eligible for the PA Breeding Program’s awards and purses.

2. What makes a horse eligible for PA-Bred registration?

A Thoroughbred foal born in the state of Pennsylvania and registered as such with the Jockey Club is eligible for Pennsylvania-Bred registration with the PHBA if one of the following conditions is met:

A) For foals of 2019 and thereafter, the dam of the foal resided continuously in Pennsylvania since December 1 of the year of conception through foaling. Mares not being bred back also fall under this category. Domicile form required by December 1.

B) The dam of the foal was purchased at a public sale after December 1 of the year of conception and brought into Pennsylvania within 14 days of the date of purchase (60 days if outside the US) and remained continuously through foaling. During the year of foaling, the foal or its dam spent at least ninety (90) days in the state. (Note: Must be a public sale – not a private transaction.)

C) The dam of the foal was bred back in 2019 to a stallion standing in Pennsylvania which was registered with the Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association as a Pennsylvania stallion during the breeding season of the year of foaling, and said dam of the foal resided in the state for at least sixty (60) consecutive days during which foaling occurred.

3. What is the procedure for registering a PA-Bred?

Fill out the online PA-Bred Registration Application (go to PA-Bred Horses on form completely and accurately, including the signature of the breeder of record. Return the form, along with the correct fee, a copy of The Jockey Club (JC) Foal Certificate and Breeder’s W-9 to the PHBA. Or, contact the PHBA to request forms. The registration will remain in effect for the rest of the horse’s life. Please note that the Breeder of Record on the PHBA Registration and the W-9 must be an identical match to the Breeder on the Jockey Club papers. For example, if the JC certificate states “Mark McDermott Stables LLC” as Breeder, “Mark McDermott Stables LLC” must be stated on the PHBA Registration and the W-9. No exceptions are permitted.

4. How much does PA-Bred Registration cost?

PHBA members pay $100 for complete applications postmarked within one calendar year from the date of foaling; $200 for applications postmarked by 12/31 of the yearling year. Non-PHBA member fees are $300 and $400, respectively. Applications beyond 12/31 of the yearling year are considered Late Registration Applications and there is a non-refundable $500 registration fee paid by certified check or money order. A properly-completed Late Registration Application must be received and approved prior to entry. Complete applications include: 1) fully completed and signed application PHBA Registration, 2) appropriate fee, 3) signed and dated W-9 exactly matching the Breeder’s name, 4) and a copy of The Jockey Club Certificate.

5. Does the location of the sire affect a horse’s status as a registered PA-Bred?

Unlike some states, Pennsylvania has no “breed-back” requirement or similar rule relating to a covering stallion. However, PA-Breds sired by registered Pennsylvania stallions earn significantly larger bonuses for their breeders (as explained in the next item).

6. How are Breeder Awards calculated?

The Breeder of a registered PA-Bred receives an Award whenever that PA-Bred finishes first, second or third in any pari-mutuel race in the state. For PA-Breds sired by registered Pennsylvania stallions, the Award (PA-Sired Breeder Award) amounts to 40 percent (50 percent maiden) of purse share earned. For those sired by out-of-state stallions, the Award (non-PA-Sired Breeder Award) is 20 percent (25 percent maiden).

7. What about the “Owner Bonus” program?

The Pennsylvania-Bred “Owner Bonus” program rewards the owners of PA-Breds finishing first, second and third in designated overnight races at PARX, Penn National and Presque Isle Downs. Bonuses are a designated percentage of purse share, and are considered part of a horse’s official earnings. Bonuses are deposited directly into owners’ accounts when purses are released. The sum of the bonus and the original purse share provides the basis for Breeder, Stallion, and Owners awards earned. The “Owner Bonus” varies at each track and may be adjusted at the discretion of the respective Horsemen’s organization and the PHBA.

8. Do Pennsylvania-based stallions earn Awards also?

When a registered PA-Bred, by a registered Pennsylvania stallion, finishes first, second or third in any pari-mutuel race in the state, an amount equal to 10 percent of the purse share earned (Stallion Award) is paid to the owner of the stallion at the time of conception.

9. What is the definition of a “registered Pennsylvania stallion”?

A registered Pennsylvania stallion is a Thoroughbred stallion who stands regularly in Pennsylvania and is registered as a Pennsylvania stallion with the PHBA.

10. How does one register a Pennsylvania stallion?

PHBA provides applications to be completed by the stallion’s owner and returned to the PHBA along with the $500 registration fee by February 15th of the breeding season. Late registrations will be accepted until December 31st for $1,000.

11. Is the stallion then registered for life, or must this process be repeated annually?

PHBA solicits stallion information via an annual stallion questionnaire which must be completed by the stallion owner. Re-registration is necessary if: 1) the stallion leaves Pennsylvania to stand in another state and subsequently returns; or 2) more than 50 percent of his ownership changes. For example, if “Mark McDermott” personally owns the stallion and then wants to change the ownership/payments to “Mark McDermott Stables LLC” the stallion must be re-registered.

If a stallion moves to the Southern Hemisphere breeding season and then returns for the subsequent Pennsylvania breeding season, no new application and registration is required. Registration is effective for the breeding season of the year in which the stallion was registered, and remains valid for life.

12. If a stallion is relocated from Pennsylvania to stand elsewhere, are awards still paid?

Yes. The stallion owner will be paid awards earned by any registered PA-Breds conceived during the stallion’s effective registration term.

13. How and when are Awards paid?

Breeder and Stallion Awards are processed monthly by the PHBA. Recipients are notified of their pending Award usually within 30 days after the end of the month in which it was earned; payment should be received within another 60 days. PA-Bred “Owner Bonuses” are paid at the time of purse release, and are deposited directly into owners’ accounts at the particular track.

14. When ownership of a PA-Bred or a Pennsylvania sire changes, who receives the awards?

The breeder of record remains the same, no matter who subsequently owns the horse. Thus, the breeder continues to receive any applicable Breeder Awards. PA-Bred “Owner Bonuses” are paid to the horse’s licensed owner at the time the bonus was earned. A stallion owner receives awards earned by eligible PA-Breds conceived during his tenure as owner, and continues to do so if the stallion is sold, and even if the stallion is no longer at stud in Pennsylvania.

15. Can out-of-state residents participate in the Pennsylvania breeding program?

Yes. There are no residency requirements for owners and/or breeders.