Racing fans will be given the opportunity to experience the thrilling world of ownership with the launch of Stable Mates today.
The Australian-first program provides aspiring owners with the opportunity to attend race meetings and spend time with trainers and syndicators to experience the passion and excitement ownership brings.
Leading trainers from around the country have pledged their support to the initiative, including: Gai Waterhouse, David Hayes, Mick Price, Darren Weir, Anthony Cummings, Kris Lees, Tony McEvoy, Stuart Kendrick, Simon Miller and Tony Gollan.
The program is part of a new brand called Racing Connections, being launched by Aushorse. The initiative includes a dedicated website aimed at educating and empowering would-be owners, with a focus on providing accurate information and encouraging people to seek good advice and set realistic goals before investing in a horse.
Racing Connections comes off the back of the most extensive ownership survey ever undertaken in Australia. Nearly 1800 people responded to the questionnaire, with almost half of them keen racing fans who had never owned before.
Despite being regular race-goers with a positive view on ownership and what it involved, fans felt that there were huge entry barriers to ownership. Only one in 10 of those surveyed knew where to start when buying a horse.
Furthermore, they said that there were few places to go to get unbiased information on ownership and that unless they knew someone in the industry whom they trusted, they wouldn’t get involved.
Speaking at the official launch today, Aushorse chief executive, Tom Reilly, said the survey had provided valuable insight into why racing fans were reluctant to take the next step and become owners.
“These people are deeply engaged in racing but feel they lack the knowledge and confidence to become owners,” explained Mr Reilly.
“Racing Connections will create a trusted source of information and provide support for would-be owners, so that they feel confident investing in the industry for the first time. We also want to help build connections between would-be owners and trainers and syndicators through Stable Mates.”
People can register for Stable Mates at racingconnections.com.au, where they will be asked to complete a short questionnaire aimed at identifying their expectations and preferences regarding ownership.
Aushorse will then work alongside trainers and syndicators to identify suitable opportunities for participants to attend the races and experience the world of ownership.
Topics covered by the Racing Connections website include different types of ownership, costs, rewards, bloodstock sales, health and wellbeing, and the welfare and retirement of racehorses.
There is also a section dedicated to racing which provides handy information for novice racegoers, including how to read a race book and tips for enjoying a day at the races.
Comments From Trainers
Gai Waterhouse: “Aushorse has initiated the most exciting scheme to bring new people into the industry who can enjoy owning racehorses and experience the ride of a lifetime. It’s so important that racing keeps reaching out and attracting new people. The team at Gai Waterhouse racing are happy to be involved in this project.”
Darren Weir: “As a sport we have to keep reaching out to new people and it’s owners who pay the bills and help put on the show. I think the Stable Mates program is a good one and I look forward to being part of this initiative.”
Tony Gollan: “Racing is a great sport and the more people that can share in the experience the better. There are a lot of people out there that want to get involved in the sport but don’t know how to get started. Anything we can do to make it easier for people to get involved in the industry is a great initiative. Investing in a horse can be daunting – it’s easy looking at it from the inside but not so easy when you are looking at it from the outside.”
Simon Miller: “For people who have never been involved in owning a racehorse, it can be a very nerve racking experience. They are usually fearful of not having enough knowledge or looking stupid, but there are no silly questions in racing and no questions a trainer can’t help with. People are intimidated, they don’t know that they can pick up the phone and call a trainer and they don’t know how much it is going to cost them.”
Kris Lees: “Ownership can appear to be a bit of a maze, like anything that is unfamiliar to us. This program will help breakdown some of those barriers and educate people on how to go about owning a horse, which can be one of the most thrilling experiences of their lives.”
Aushorse is the official marketing body of the Australian Thoroughbred industry, proudly promoting Australian breeding and racing both internationally and domestically.
It is an independent, not-for-profit company committed to providing impartial advice and assistance.
For more information contact chief executive Tom Reilly on 0423 146 334
During the Spring Carnival of 2015 Aushorse completed the most extensive survey on racehorse ownership undertaken in Australia.
Some 1756 people completed the survey, with the average respondent taking 16 minutes to fill in the questions. These people were among the 10,000 racing fans that had entered the Aushorse Own A Champion competition that autumn, which saw us give away a share in Royal Descent when she ran in the 2015 Doncaster Handicap.
Almost half (44 per cent) of the respondents had never been owners, with current owners comprising 32 per cent and lapsed owners 24 per cent of those that completed the questionnaire.