Following on from the success of the State’s first ever million dollar races, South Australian thoroughbred racing is about to take a further major step forward with TRSA (Thoroughbred Racing SA) signing a new multi-million dollar media rights agreement with Racing.com, covering its domestic (including digital) and international rights.
As part of the seven-year agreement, which commences from 1 August 2017, Racing.com has sublicensed South Australian thoroughbred rights to Sky Racing, thus ensuring that South Australian thoroughbred race vision will continue to be screened on Sky’s premier wall-to-wall racing channel.
A key component of the agreement is that Racing.com will sell live streaming rights of South Australian racing to the wider digital market of wagering operators, while the International rights are effective from the expiry of the current agreement in March 2018.
A key consideration by the TRSA Board and Management throughout the negotiation process was a desire to achieve as broad as possible coverage of South Australian thoroughbred racing across Australia and internationally, while still maintaining its footprint on Australia’s main wagering channel, Sky Racing. In arriving at their decision, the TRSA Board and Management considered that in accepting the Racing.com bid, with the sublicence to Sky, the partnership forged with the Victorian racing industry, and in particular Seven West Media’s partnership with Racing.com, achieved that goal, with South Australian racing now to be screened on free-to-view TV (C68/C78), pay-to-view platforms (Sky/Foxtel) and multi digital platforms.
TRSA Chair Frances Nelson said the new media rights agreement represented the best possible outcome for the industry.
“The agreement reached with Racing.com and their sublicence to Sky Racing ensures that South Australian racing will not only continue to be screened on the channels provided by Sky, but also make our racing available via the free-to-air platforms that Seven West Media and Racing.com can provide,” she said.
“It will allow our industry to be more thoroughly showcased via the Racing.com programs, which provides great exposure for all clubs and participants.
“It will allow us to promote our industry at a level that would not be possible without the involvement of Seven West Media and the access to the free to air channels that this agreement provides.”
While the value of the contract is not being released, TRSA CEO Jim Watters said it represented a “very significant multi-million dollar increase in revenue” compared with the previous media rights agreement.
“The value this delivers will enable TRSA to further support the local racing industry through investment in track and training facilities as well as infrastructure upgrades for patrons,” he said.
“In addition, it also gives us the ability to achieve further prizemoney increases as we continue to build the momentum around South Australian racing’s profile, and to provide increased returns to participants, which in turn encourages further investment. All of which sustains and grows employment in South Australia.
“The injection of State Government money into the current Festival of Racing at Morphettville and the creation of our first million dollar races has provided outstanding impetus. Now, we believe this agreement with Racing.com will ensure we can continue to capitalise on SA’s re-emergence on the national stage.”
As part of the rights, SA thoroughbred racing will benefit from:
- Being broadcast on a channel that provides a significant increase in the level of exposure of the SA industry;
- Live hosting for all metropolitan and provincial TRSA meetings;
- Additional broadcast content covering participants and stories from SA trainers, jockeys, owners, breeders;
- Upgrading five TRSA meetings per year to be the primary meeting on the Racing.com channel;
- An investment in local talent to cover South Australian racing;
- Expansion of Racing.com digital assets to cover South Australian form and racing news, helping to drive wagering growth; and
- Expanding the presence of South Australian racing in key media assets controlled by Racing.com including non-race day programming (Get On, Before the First, Autumn Insiders, Spring Insiders, Turf Life) and publications (Best Bets and Winning Post).
Andrew Catterall, Chief Executive of Racing.com welcomes the partnership with South Australian racing and the opportunities it brings.
“We are pleased that Thoroughbred Racing South Australia has chosen to partner with Racing.com to 2024,” Catterall said.
“The addition of 180 South Australian thoroughbred racing meetings to our existing calendar of 520 Victorian and 88 Hong Kong meetings greatly enhances our viewer experience.
“Our shared objective is to use this philosophy of every screen, every phone, every connected device to grow nationwide audience and interest in SA thoroughbred racing and, in turn, help grow wagering turnover and revenues for the local industry.
“We look forward to showcasing all South Australian races from the bush, to Oakbank and the big carnival days at Morphettville to a national audience by telling the stories of South Australian race clubs, jockeys, trainers, owners and horses, and informing punters to find winners in South Australia through our shows like Get On and Before the First.
“There is a long history of a natural connection between Victorian and South Australian racing and we are keen to work with TRSA, the SA clubs and participants to build on that.
“On behalf of Racing.com, Seven West Media, Racing Victoria and the Victorian race clubs, we thank the TRSA Board and Executive for the opportunity to develop this partnership.”
Media enquiries: Phil Martin, Michels Warren PR on 0418 817 876