nlike land bookies in the UK, online operators are not obliged to make contributions to the horseracing levy which subsidises the industry, the BBC reported this week.
Horse racing was still worth us$ 5.3 billion to the UK economy in 2012 despite falling gambling revenues due to the activities of offshore internet gambling operators, the report found. However, the report pointed out that increases in revenues from television rights had partially offset the losses.
When inflation is taken into account, horse racing was worth just 1.4 % less to the UK economy than it was in 2008. Online betting platforms that help punters to compare odds more easily contributed to the impact, the report discovered.
The BBC claims that horse racing is second only to football in terms of spectators, with racecourses attracting 5.58 million visitors in 2012, whilst the Grand National race reached a peak audience of 8.9 million in 2013 in its first year on Channel 4.
“British racing has faced, and largely come through, a significant test,” said Paul Bittar, CEO of the BHA. “We were never going to be immune to the wider financial difficulties that still prevail, but can all be extremely proud of the scale of our sport’s continued contribution to the UK economy.”