Equine insurance experts answer your questions about insuring Thoroughbreds for the breeding and auction realms.
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QUESTION: What is the process to insure a new stallion, and what are some of the coverages available for him?
BRYCE BURTON: When the stallion prospect is still racing, the first step is to make sure that the colt is covered for Full Mortality coverage (All-Risk) and Accident, Sickness, and Disease (ASD) coverage. Just as the name implies, the All-Risk, or Full Mortality includes all causes of death or destruction of the horse for humane reasons. The ASD coverage is an add-on to all colts who have enough of a resume to be considered stallions once they are retired. This coverage provides security for any accident, sickness, or disease that renders the prospect incapable of performing his duties as a stallion down the road. Examples would include castration for humane reasons from testicular cancer, hind-end lameness without resolve, or laminitis. ASD covers only the permanent risks.
Option A is a coverage that we strongly recommend on horses who have placed themselves in the sphere of strong stallion prospects. This coverage is an endorsement to the standard First Season Infertility (FSI) policy, which we will get to in a second. Option A covers the colt as a stallion while he is still on the racetrack. If the colt were to sustain an injury or illness that did not ultimately result in destruction, yet leaves him incapable of performing his duties as a stallion the following breeding season (covering the minimum amount of 20 mares), a full claim is paid. Option A is put in place to guarantee that your racehorse produces the built-in revenue already warranted by his accomplishments.
Once the prospect is retired to stud, a First Season Infertility (FSI) policy will be placed on the stallion. This provides coverage for his owners that the stallion will be fertile in his first full year at stud. A one-time charge, this coverage pays a claim if the horse does not impregnate 60 percent of the qualified mares in his first year at stud. This is basically the last piece to the puzzle to secure long-term revenues for the new stallion's owners.
Bryce Burton is a property and liability specialist for Muirfield Insurance. He is from Frankfort, Ky., where he grew up an avid race fan. His Thoroughbred racing fandom combined with a collegiate internship in the insurance industry, culminated in a start in the equine insurance field. Bryce has been with Muirfield Insurance since 2014, following his graduation from Transylvania University in Lexington.
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