The U.S. Trotting Association (USTA) recently released statistics on mares bred in North America for 2020. The overall numbers show an increase compared to 2019, continuing the trend of upward movement for the breeding industry in Standardbred racing.
As of Thursday, Nov. 12, the USTA recorded 12,229 mares bred by 623 stallions compared to 11,513 mares bred by the same date in 2019. Of that number, Indiana ranks second on the list of mares bred with 2,497, second only to Ohio where 2,860 mares were bred.
The USTA credits increased purse structures at many of the North American tracks for the increase in mares bred. Also, they noted most of the yearling sales were pleased with their numbers this season, despite the negative effects of COVID-19 on business interruptions and mandated restrictions that adversely affected sales and racing venues.
The number of mares bred in 2020 has almost surpassed the tally from 2015 when only 12,811 mares were bred for the entire year. For the past five years, the trend has seen an increase in mares bred with 14,997 total bred in 2019.
According to the Indiana Horse Racing Commission website, there are approximately 1,300 mares registered in the state of Indiana for 2020. The site also has 79 stallions registered for the upcoming 2021 breeding season.