Billionaire business man and horse racing enthusiast Gerry Harvey, along with his Magic Millions thoroughbred sales partner John Singleton, have their sights set on building their Magic Millions Classic race for two-year-olds into the richest thoroughbred event in the world.
The highly anticipated Magic Millions Race Day, run by the Gold Coast Turf Club, takes place this Saturday headlined by the BMW Magic Millions Classic. This year the event is worth $2million, still an impressive purse, however Harvey and Singleton have proposed to increase these stakes to a record $11 million next January.
Currently Australia’s richest race and the world’s richest handicap, the $6 million Melbourne Cup, to become seemingly insignificant in the face of a jaw-dropping $11 million feature. The Magic Millions Classic would also surpass the $10.9million Dubai World Cup.
But the famous tycoons aren’t putting up the whole amount. Harvey and Singleton have said they will put $5.5million towards the increase and have appealed to the Queensland Government to use taxpayers’ money for the remainder.
If the Gold Coast were to host the world’s richest race, it would have a hugely positive effect on the entire horse racing industry in Australia. Already the Magic Millions carnival injects millions of dollars annually into the Queensland economy, and for the state to host a world-class race of an even larger calibre, it would ensure the sustainability of racing in the country for the foreseeable future.
The Queensland Government, however, has not jumped at the idea.
UPDATE – Queensland Government Rejects Magic Millions Increase Proposal
The Queensland government today has rejected the proposal by Gerry Harvey and John Singleton to use taxpayer’s money to increase the prize money of their Magic Millions Classic race to a hefty $11million for next year’s carnival.
Acting Queensland Premier Paul Lucas made the decision that it was not up to the Government or the taxpayers to put such a large figure towards a purse for the Magic Millions, despite the fact that the Magic Millions carnival contributes over $50 million into the Queensland economy each year.