Racing UK

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Racing UK

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Racing UK is a British television channel with 34 racecourses as shareholders. As Racing UK grew several other business units and joint ventures were developed. It is one of the two major UK horse racing television channels, along with At The Races. The station is focused on horse racing from the UK, North America and France, showing many live races and related shows.

Racecourse Media Group

Racecourse Media Group Ltd (RMG) is the umbrella organisation for the 34 Racecourses, which holds their interest in Racing UK, Turf TV and GBI Racing. The racecourses (the shareholders) are: Aintree, Ascot, Ayr, Bangor, Beverley, Carlisle, Cartmel, Catterick Bridge, Cheltenham, Chester, Epsom Downs, Exeter, Goodwood, Hamilton Park, Haydock Park, Huntingdon, Kelso, Kempton Park, Ludlow, Market Rasen, Musselburgh, Newbury, Newmarket, Nottingham, Perth, Pontefract, Redcar, Salisbury, Sandown Park, Thirsk, Warwick, Wetherby, Wincanton and York.

Contracted courses

The list of the racecourses that are contracted to RUK are:

  • Aintree
  • Ascot
  • Ayr
  • Bangor-On-Dee
  • Beverley
  • Carlisle
  • Cartmel
  • Catterick Bridge
  • Cheltenham
  • Chester
  • Epsom Downs
  • Exeter
  • Goodwood
  • Hamilton Park
  • Haydock Park
  • Huntingdon
  • Kelso
  • Kempton Park
  • Ludlow
  • Market Rasen
  • Musselburgh
  • Newbury
  • Newmarket
  • Nottingham
  • Pontefract
  • Perth
  • Redcar
  • Salisbury
  • Sandown Park
  • Thirsk
  • Warwick
  • Wetherby
  • Wincanton
  • York

The Racing Channel was a British subscription television channel which used to extensively cover horse racing. It ran between 1995 and its closure in January 2003.

The Racing Channel was produced and transmitted by Satellite Information Services (SIS) direct to the home through Sky and cable television. Originally it was a high premium stand-alone channel costing £19.99 per month and was the first single-sport channel in the world. It did at one time attract 35,000 subscribers [2] In November 2000, the rights in the channel reverted to the Race Course Association (RCA), with SIS continuing to produce and transmit the channel on a commercial basis for the Association. The channel was subsequently sold to The Racing Network International (TRNI) who took the decision to close the channel in January 2003.

Demise

In 2001, BSkyB, Channel 4 and Arena Leisure (owners of 6 UK courses) signed a lucrative £307 million deal with 49 of the 59 UK racecourses for a 10-year period. This meant that the Racing Channel lost many of its top courses and was left with just 10 meetings. The 10 courses did not feature any of the major meetings, and at this point the subscription fee was dropped and the channel was available more generally to Sky Digital subscribers. Nonetheless, the channel was clearly no longer viable.

At the time of its closure it had the contracts to cover meetings at ten of the minor courses in the country; Exeter, Fakenham, Hexham, Kelso, Leicester, Perth, Sedgefield, Stratford, Taunton and Towcester – all of which became part of At The Races portfolio of courses.

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