As the British horseracing builds up to one of the biggest days on the horse racing calendar over the pond the waters are very murky indeed.
Figures reported by the Kentucky-based industry owned database of racing information and statistics, Equibase, show the thoroughbred racing industry took another nose dive as wagering continued to decline with no sign of it slowing any time soon.
In March 2011 wagers dropped by just under 10% (9.96%) from $998,748,721 last year to $899,304,167 this year. It isn’t helped by the fact that purses have increased by 5.32% to $204,670,032 from $194,331,256 a year ago.
Earlier this year, Churchill Downs showed their increasing reliance on online advance deposit wagering as that part of the business grew 23% to $17.2million for 2010. Other tracks might follow their lead and it could see the thoroughbred landscape change drastically in the United States.
The horse racing industry seems like it’s either an industry that kicks, screams, and has a small tantrum if it doesn’t get its own way like in the UK. Or it cowers in the corner flickering like the almost dormant embers of a bonfire that has long lost its fight.
Elsewhere in the world of sports betting, online betting exchange Betfair has agreed a deal with Queensland Rugby Union. The corporate partnership deal is set to last for two years and means that all Queensland Reds home rugby matches will now feature grass signage and advertising from the Gibraltar-licensed company.
It follows a similar deal that they struck with the competition that the team plays in, the southern Hemisphere’s Super Rugby, and increases their reach in a country where they have seen their fair share of controversy in the not too distant past.