Owners are the life-blood of our sport; the most important stakeholder; making the greatest investment into racing with over £672m a year spent on training fees and bloodstock.
Only 2% of owners cover their annual costs
Without owners there is no racing and the whole edifice of racecourses, trainers, breeders, syndicators and sales houses crumbles. Racing is reliant on this continuing investment which, in turn, drives a £4bn+ economic contribution to the UK economy. Yet many owners feel dissatisfied by the way they are treated. Prizemoney is paltry and deteriorating: less than 2% of owners get anywhere near covering their annual costs, and the median return via prizemoney is less than 7p in the pound.
The ownership experience frequently falls way below expectations. It is hard to influence the direction of our sport. Owners feel they are the “unacknowledged stakeholders” of British racing and are concerned that their views go unheard. Many believe racing is facing a crisis, with dissatisfied owners giving up on the game – with huge financial implications for the sport.
We have produced A Blueprint for Racehorse Ownership in the UK: Making retention and acquisition of owners the number 1 goal for British Racing. We challenge the sport’s leadership to address that goal with urgency.
Very few owners are satisfied with current leadership, governance and decision-making of British racing. Disillusionment has increased alarmingly and there is little expectation that modernisation of the sport will occur through the current anachronistic structure. Racing’s leadership struggles to focus properly on three critical priorities: funding, prize-money and fixtures.
Our second major report, Why Racing Has to Change to Secure Owner Acquisition and Retention …. and How to Do It, launches this Manifesto for the Future – Retaining Owners as the #1 Key Investor.
Focus: After what has been another intense phase for the racing community, Ged Shields & Jon Hughes discuss the way forward for racing.
Film length: 16 minutesWatch
Focus: Jon Hughes discusses with Sean Boyce on The Racing Debate Show, the findings of the 100-days of consultation with the racing community
Film length: 12 minutesWatch
by Jon Hughes
by Ged Shields
by Jon Hughes
Jon Hughes and Ged Shields present their findings on the completion of the Keep Owners in Racing initial campaign, along with their recommendations for reimaging racehorse ownership.Download
Back on 12th July, Ged Shields and Jon Hughes launched our Blueprint for Racehorse Ownership in the UK: Making retention and acquisition of owners the number 1 goal of a Racing Recovery Plan. As we are now just past the 50 days point see the two-page summary and analysis of the progress so far..Download
Our intention was always to keep pressure on British Racing to produce and implement a meaningful Recovery Plan. We were encouraged when Nick Rust made his announcement about the “9 Goals”, but there is clearly a huge amount of urgent, concerted and collaborative action required if the sport is to address the challenges ahead and mitigate the looming crisis of a major contraction in racing. The call for review support from UK government is to aid and assist making “recovery” a reality.Download
We want the sport to “put owners first”.
Please support the initiative and follow #KeepOwnersinRacing
An owner since 2004 with 94 winners so far. Current trainers are Karl Burke, Philip Hobbs, Anthony Honeyball, Martin Keighley and Charlie Longsdon. Involved with 23 horses, from foals to chasers. Former chairman and co-founder of specialist management consultancies in procurement and supply chain, and visiting professorships at the University of Birmingham and Vlerick Leuven Gent Business School. Former chairman of a racing yard.
Involved in racehorse ownership since 2015 and has had 50 winners so far. Current trainers are Ruth Carr, Richard Fahey, Ralph Beckett, David Simcock and Willie Mullins. At present has shares in 18 Flat horses and one National Hunt chaser – Gr.1 winner Kemboy. Former Vice President of The Sherwin-Williams Company with international experience in marketing and mergers & acquisitions. Stood for the Racehorse Owners’ Association board in 2020.