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Victoria hails Spring Carnival wagering growth

Tue, Dec 6, 2:22pm by Staff Writer

Racing Victoria has hailed its Spring Racing Carnival as a major success with wagering growing to $2.28 billion across the three months of feature racing.

RV measures its key racing period from late August, with the running of the first Group 1 of the season, the Memsie Stakes, until two weeks after the completion of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

Its figures across all wagering providers in this period has seen a 4.7% growth, with the four-day Melbourne Cup Carnival; three-day Caulfield Cup Carnival and two-day Cox Plate Carnival, all up on last year.

Wagering turnover flows back to the racing industry in several ways. Pari-mutual (TAB) wagering comes back via the joint-venture agreement between RV and Tabcorp.

While this has historically been the lion’s share of funding, in the past five years, the growth of corporate bookmakers as well as fixed odds betting has seen a variety of agreement struck with these companies.

RV didn’t indicate how the growth was distributed between part-mutual and fixed odds wagering, but there is a strong possibility given recent trends that it was the latter which drove the upswing.

Departing CEO Bernard Saundry also praised a rise in attendance across the carnival.

RV said total attendance across all key spring meetings was 470,845, up 0.8%.

“Once again, the feature club carnivals at Caulfield, Moonee Valley and Flemington performed extremely well and we observed wagering growth at each; total turnover was up a collective 7% across those nine feature meetings,” Saundry said.

“While the marquee racedays in Melbourne remain the centrepiece of the Spring Racing Carnival, it was also pleasing to see the growth in wagering and attendance across country and regional Victoria with more people enjoying their thoroughbred racing.”

“The Ballarat, Bairnsdale, Ararat and Kilmore Cup meetings are among the great success stories of this year’s Spring Racing Carnival with each delivering terrific growth in attendance, turnover and community engagement.”

Saundry also confirmed that there would be a review into the prizemoney levels of Victoria racing after concerns raised by trainers that Victorian trainers were at a disadvantage when compared to those in new South Wales.

“We are committed to maximising returns to the industry to reward participation, incentivise ownership and ensure strong field sizes.”

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