The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) and Arena Racing Company (ARC) announced today that the two parties had agreed terms with regard to ARC’s contribution to prize money for 2014.
ARC has made a commitment that, subject to certain terms agreed with the BHA, the company will contribute £11.3 million towards prize money in 2014, an increase of £2.2 million. The reaching of a one-year agreement has cleared the way for the BHA to confirm that Lingfield Park, one of 15 ARC courses, will host a raceday worth £1 million on Good Friday in 2014.
Last week, in the wake of nearly half of Britain’s racecourses signing Prize Money Agreements with the Horsemen’s Group and the BHA, the BHA announced that it would delay full publication of the 2014 Fixture List to allow more racecourses to sign up. The BHA added that whether racecourses had or had not made a specific commitment to prize money would have an influence on the allocation of the outstanding fixtures controlled by the BHA.
Paul Bittar, Chief Executive of the BHA, said:
“I am pleased that we have been able to agree terms with ARC, although it is unfortunate that ARC felt unable to sign up to the three-year Prize Money Agreement developed by the Horsemen’s Group and BHA.
“We considered it in the best interests of the sport and its participants to secure a commitment to prize money in 2014 from ARC. This agreement will deliver a substantial increase in ARC’s contribution for 2014, an amount at least equal to what they would have made under a Prize Money Agreement, while also delivering ARC certainty over plans for their all-weather programme and Good Friday.
“We welcome ARC’s ambitious plans for staging this valuable fixture at Lingfield Park and, together with Great British Racing, we look forward to working with them to make the day a success for racing from all perspectives.”
Tony Kelly, Managing Director of ARC, said:
“We are pleased to confirm our on-going commitment to prize money in a deal which brings benefits to the Horsemen, the BHA and ourselves. ARC’s contribution to prize money rose by 18% in 2013 and will increase by a further 24% in 2014.
“The terms of our agreement with BHA means we can plan ahead for 2014 with much greater certainty. We have exciting plans for the All Weather programme and the clarity we now have with regard to fixture numbers will enable us to fulfil our commitments to increasing prize money.”
Following the BHA’s decision to delay signing off the full Fixture List, 17 further courses have signed Prize Money Agreements or made specific commitments to their prize money contribution.