BHA aims to maximise revenues with new strategy
The British Horseracing Association (BHA) has revealed plans to launch a new strategy in 2019 that will focus on boosting revenue from activities related to the sport.
The initiative, also designed to support the sport’s workforce, includes making a number of changes to the racing calendar, which the BHA believes will help to boost commercial revenue.
Planned changes include finishing all floodlit races at the earlier time of 20:30, as well as not staging any race on December 22 in 2019, thus clearing an additional day before the Christmas programme.
The BHA also plans to introduce a six-day break for flat racing participants at the end of the turf season in November, as well as a five-day break in March towards the end of the all-weather season
Existing eight-day summer break and five-day end-of-season breaks for jump fixtures will also be maintained.
The BHA has also announced a one-year trial for an additional 15 floodlit fixtures in autumn, which will be run alongside existing floodlit cards on Wednesdays and Thursdays.
In addition, the BHA plans to extend the Appearance Money Scheme from within its existing prize money budget, although this remains subject to approval from the Horserace Betting Levy Board.
Richard Wayman, chief operating officer of the BHA, said: “We are aware of the demands that the Fixture List places on our participants.
“Repeatedly returning home late from race meetings being followed by early starts the following day is not good for the health and wellbeing of our trainers, staff and jockeys, and ultimately impacts retention rates.
“At the same time, as the world changes and betting behaviours alter – in particular the ongoing and ever-increasing switch to digital betting platforms – it is essential that the sport adapts to meet this demand and schedules its fixtures and races accordingly.
“We must maximise revenues to the sport and its people by engaging with betting audiences at times when we know they want to bet and have few other sporting options to do so.
“It is about striking the right balance and ensuring that the sport generates revenue while not asking too much of our workforce. It is for this reason that the agreed policies will be put in place next year.”
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