Despite a host of external challenges such as Brexit and the coronavirus pandemic, Irish car racing continues to grow steadily with the number of owners increasing by more than 20% in 2021 compared to the year’s pre-COVID-19 levels. 2019.
Full-year industry statistics are released by Horse Racing Ireland on January 28 with various indicators trending up, most notably ownership. Many of the alarming numbers, however, have been overblown by the fact that the point-to-point schedule has been cut dramatically in 2021, redirecting a significant portion of horses and owners to the track.
In total, there were 1,062 new owners registered last year, up 36% from 780 owners in 2020 and 851 owners in 2019. Total owners increased 20.1% to 4,901 owners. ownership with an owner retention rate of 80.7%. That number refers to the percentage of active 2020 owners who entered the race in 2021.
The number of horses in training, bolstered by the point-to-point disruption, increased for the first time in six years, growing 14.4% from 9,248 to 10,579.
Suzanne Eade, HRI’s new chief executive officer, said: “A lot of the figures released today show significant resilience in the livestock and equine industry. The numbers on the number of horses trained have already shown that there is a lot of room for improvement. up more than 14% year-over-year at a time when owners’ attendance at race meetings was severely limited.
“That support from owners is vital, puts the industry on a safe footing, and favorably reflects the level of employment across the industry and broader economic activity. It’s encouraging that all ownership types are growing, and record owner retention is a great vote of confidence in the industry.”
A record number of matches and races were held in 2021, but there was no public attendance at any of the matches for the first six months of 2021. Spectator numbers were limited to 500 words. July to early September while the racetracks operate at 50% capacity for the rest of the year, despite the added failure of Leopardstown’s Christmas carnival that must be run behind closed doors.
Total public attendance was just 231,000 for the year, compared with 1.3 million in 2019, and a direct impact was felt as on-court betting revenue dropped 80% to 11.7 million euros from 58.4 million euros in 2019. Retail The closure of licensed betting offices in Ireland and the UK had a negative impact on total betting and Tote figures for the year.
Profits were more positive on the blood front, with a significant increase in the overall figure for plasma sales at the public auction at 182.8 million euros, an increase of 71.3% in 2020. where some major horse trades are severely disrupted, delayed or relocated.
Eade added: “Bloodstock Irish horse sales have taken a huge hit in 2020 but last year’s figures for horses sold at public auction have improved dramatically with a succession of active sales. Good deal. Trading was vibrant at the Irish shop and buyers from 22 countries invested in the Aspirational Irish Sales, with Irish ponies sold to 31 countries in all.”
The total prize money awarded in 2021 is 61.82 million euros in 2021 compared with 50.58 million euros in 2020 but down 6.4% from the pre-pandemic figure of 66.06 million euros in 2019 .