01 Nov 2011 Pre-2014 Releases

Statement from the Chairman of the British Horseracing Authority, Paul Roy:

“There are positive elements to the 51st Levy Scheme, but it is disappointing overall and deeply frustrating that its terms can be imposed on Racing by the Bookmakers’ Committee and Independent Members of the Levy Board.

“The three Racing representatives made clear that they could not support a target yield outside the range of £73.7m to £80.8m for the 50th Scheme set by the Secretary of State just back in February. There is no justification for a figure lower than this range.

“The sport does have a degree of certainty moving forward, and can immediately finalise the 2012 Fixture List, but our return from the betting industry remains far lower than our commercial value, and the Levy remains unreflective of the modern betting environment. Offshore operators and the failure to address betting exchanges’ different business model are still costing Racing vital revenues.

“This year’s last-minute discussions have again laid bare the imperfect and out-dated processes within the Levy mechanism. No-one involved in our sport should be in any doubt of the need to radically overhaul or replace the Levy: Racing’s future should be determined by direct, commercial negotiation with the betting industry on the principle of a willing buyer and willing seller.

“We are in detailed discussions with Government and the betting industry around the introduction of modern, fair, enforceable and sustainable arrangements and this work must progress with urgency.”