About the Incentive Fund

The incentive program will see its last payouts in the next few years.

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As a means to conclude the program, the AQHA Incentive Fund will not accept foal nominations past 2018 and, effective immediately, will no longer accept stallion nominations.

The AQHA Incentive Fund was a landmark program for the equine industry, having paid out more than $80 million in its lifetime. The fund was so successful that it became a model for many others. However, multiple factors in the past decade contributed to the Incentive Fund’s decline.

Ultimately, a lack of participation led the AQHA Executive Committee, at its July 2017 meeting, to approve the incentive program’s termination. The conclusion of the program will allow time and resources to move to the research and development of new potential incentive programs for competitors and breeders.

For owners and nominators wondering when the last payout will be made, preliminary examination indicates it will likely pay through the 2020 show season.

Read the AQHA Incentive Fund Q&A and Incentive Fund timeline for questions regarding the Incentive Fund and its termination.

Nomination Refunds

Depending on the breeding and foaling year, stallion and foal nominators can apply for a nomination refund as follows:

  • Stallion nominators for 2017 breeding season – option of refund or nominator may opt to remain in Incentive Fund as it winds down
  • 2017 foal nominators – option of refund if the nominator is still the record owner of the foal or the nominator may opt to remain in Incentive Fund as it winds down
  • Nomination payments for stallions or foals made prior to 2017 are non-refundable as such payments have already been allocated/distributed for payout years

Refunds must have been applied for by September 30, 2017.

How the Program Worked
Each point earned at an AQHA-approved show in the open and/or amateur division by an Incentive Fund nominated horse is worth a specific amount. Any points earned in Rookie, Level 1 classes, or at Introductory shows do not count toward Incentive Fund payout. The exact amount depends on total money in the fund for that show year and the total number of points earned in that year by Incentive Fund-nominated horses. 

The show season concludes December 31 each year. The following spring the owner of the Incentive Fund-nominated horse receives a check for 70 percent of the horse's earnings. The nominator receives 15 percent of the horse's earnings and the horse’s sire nominator gets 15 percent. 

The nomination process started with the stallion owner. Here are the rules:

  • The stallion owner must nominate the stallion within 90 days of its first ever breeding. (Ex: Stallion breeds the first mare in April, then he must be nominated by July.)   
  • The same stallion must then be nominated again by November 30 for the next year's breeding season. This is because stallion nominations are due a year in advance. (Ex: Nominate in 2008 for the 2009 breeding season that produces foals born in 2010.)
  • The price to nominate a stallion is $300 (flat) for the first breeding season, and then the nomination fee is then based on the number of mares listed on the previous years’ stallion breeding report. Click here for a price chart. 
  • After you’ve mailed your stallion nomination in the first time, you can call it in each year thereafter. AQHA even makes it easy by calling everyone eligible to nominate by phone each year!

Foal nominations work like this:   

  • Mare owners breed their mares to AQHA Incentive Fund-nominated stallions. This the only way for the foal to be nominated – if its sire was enrolled in the program. Mare owners can check the nominated stallion list online, or call AQHA Customer Service at 806-376-4811 with a stallion’s name – we’ll tell you the information.
  • Once you have the stallion picked, the breeding done, simply check a box on the foal application, and be sure to sign the form, and AQHA will nominate your foal for the Incentive Fund. Or, download and complete this foal nomination form


Incentive Fund Termination Q&A
Read answers to a collection of popular questions related to the conclusion of the Incentive Fund.

Foal Nomination Form
Note: The sire must have been nominated for the breeding season which produced the foal in order for the foal to be eligible.