Jockey Club Warns it Could Lose £50 Million from Betting Shop Closures


betting shops

The most recent financial figures from the Jockey Club show a healthy profit for the company that promotes and hosts events at some of the biggest horse racing tracks in the UK. This is also their 10th successive year of record profit, however, the good news from those financial figures comes with a very strong warning from the group and the future that lies ahead.

The Jockey Club have said they could lose up to £50 million over the coming years due to betting shop closures, which are due to the new FOBT stake limits and bookmakers saying they may have to close shops as profits decline. The message is a simple one from the Jockey Club, they are doing well right now, and pleased with how things are going, but the future could turn out to be very bleak if the impact of the FOBT restrictions is as bad as some fear.

The Jockey Club runs two of the biggest horse racing festivals in the world, the Cheltenham Festival and the Aintree Grand National meeting, both of which bring in a large profit for the company. Their most recent figures show a profit of £48 million. With the possibility of losing £50 million due to betting shop closures, their entire profit could be wiped out, which would have a big impact on racing. Anything the Jockey Club makes is pumped back into racing, and a big part of it goes into offering prize money, something owners feel very strongly about.

The Jockey Club receives a payment from bookmakers per betting shop, per race for rights to show live racing inside the shops. This is where the impact would be felt the most, with fewer shops paying into the fund if we saw the expected closures that bookmakers keep talking about.

The results for last year were always expected to be strong, and it comes as no surprise that the Jockey Club made record profits once again. However, it is the figures from this year, which we will find out around this time next year that will determine the financial future of horse racing. These figures will give us exact numbers to work with, instead of guesses and estimations which are currently floating around.

One thing we can all agree on now is that this is a vital time for horse racing in the UK. We have many people with a vested interest in the sport from a financial point of view, and the best thing they can do now is work together in an attempt to make up the expected shortfall.

Something will suffer, and we will see a decrease in certain areas, however, it will be up to the big players in UK horse racing to determine how bad that is felt. There is a problem coming, we all know that, but how the problem is managed by those at the top will determine how much we feel it.

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