When a horse runs in a claiming race, it has a price tag affixed to it that anyone can pay to buy the horse before the race begins. If the horse wins or earns money, the owner at the outset of the race keeps any prize money in addition to the money paid for the horse by its new owner. Because the new owner buys the horse before the race begins, the new owner is taking a risk that the horse won’t be injured or killed due to race injuries. Regardless of how the horse finishes or its condition at the end of the race, the deal is final, even if the horse no longer is breathing. Claiming Races are great ways for stable owners to raise promising horses and then sell them to larger interests that might be able to train a horse to become a champion. They also work well for horse owners with deep pockets who want to find promising race horses without having to raise them from birth. Horses that win claiming races qualify for starter races, which protect the horses from being claimed by other trainers.
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