The Racecourse Association (RCA), the trade association for Britain’s racecourses today advised its 59 members to sign up to a two week exclusivity period with ‘Go Racing’ with a view to concluding a contract within that timetable for the sale of their terrestrial and interactive rights for a ten year period. Guaranteed payments to racecourses over the ten years will be £320 million with a further £80 million being spent on production and marketing.

‘Go Racing’ is a joint venture between Channel 4, BSkyB and Arena Leisure. They were up against Carlton Racing, a subsidiary of Carlton Communications, which had tabled a similar bid.

Angus Crichton-Miller, Chairman of the RCA, commented: ‘It has been very difficult to pick between two excellent bidders and potential partners. Ultimately the more certain broadcasting coverage that ‘Go Racing’ could offer was the deciding factor. It heavily influenced Racecourse Holdings Trust, the owner of 12 racecourses including Aintree and Cheltenham, who intend to commit to ‘Go Racing’.

There remain some important issues to be settled with ‘Go Racing’ during the exclusivity period, but I’ll be disappointed if we cannot resolve them. It will ultimately be up to the 59 individual courses to conclude the deal by December 15th.

I would strongly commend Carlton for their substantial and innovative offer. Meantime we look forward to working with the ‘Go Racing’ joint venture partners to exploit British Racing around the world.’

For further information:

Angus Crichton-Miller: 01344 873 538
Stephen Atkin: 01344 873 538