The options for owning a racehorse have multiplied since the standard method was to have a single owner.  Cothran “Cot” Campbell of Dogwood Stable is generally credited with setting this change in motion by perfecting and popularizing the technique of partnerships.  Since then, partnerships have proliferated.

Forbes magazine recently (June 29, 2016) published “How to Buy a Racehorse.”  The choices were divided into four types of ownership.

First Class or sole ownership with the vast majority of purchase prices falling into the wide range of $40,000 to $1 million.

Business Class or syndicate with a per-share price range of $1,000 to $40,000.  This gets you a “spot in the owner’s box and a piece of the winnings likely equal to your stake.”

Economy Class (pioneered by Emerald Downs) with a per-share purchase price, for example, of $500 in the Churchill Downs Racing Club.  For this outlay, the part owner received free track admission, access to the paddock and morning workouts, D. Wayne Lukas as the trainer, and no expenses beyond the initial outlay of $500.

(The Racing Club was limited to 200 members and sold out with “overwhelming popularity” (click here for more information), including a share bought by the Louisville Courier-Journal.  The Racing Club’s 2-year-old colt Warrior’s Club ran third in his second start at Ellis Park last Sunday.  A second edition of the Racing Club sold out just as rapidly as the first and the partnership reportedly bought a 2-year-old filly.)

Discount Fare.  This $100 entry point for a share is being promoted by True.Ink magazine under the name Indiegogo Campaign.  (However, this partnership–which the magazine intends to cover as a story–depended on whether enough money was raised to purchase a horse.  In fact, $42,792 or 120% of the targeted amount was raised–click here for more details.)

Partnerships of all sizes have been a boon to horse racing, as single ownership is prohibitively expensive for all but a very small percentage of the population.  Cot Campbell deserves a great deal of credit for his innovation.

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