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Racing Attendances Up in 2013

Wed, Jan 29, 2014

Annual attendance rises to 5,679,941.

The Racecourse Association (RCA) has today announced that the total attendance across British racecourses rose in 2013 to 5,679,941. This represents an increase of 2% from 5,581,615 in 2012, maintaining racing's position as the second most attended sport after football.

RCA Chief Executive Stephen Atkin praised the performance of racecourses in 2013: "Racecourses are making continued efforts to improve the racegoer experience in what is an extremely competitive leisure market where any growth in the current climate is well earned. The recent Deloitte report showed the excellent value for money they provide.

"With the weather in this country being hugely variable making direct year on year comparisons is difficult especially when conditions can have such an effect on advance and walk up ticket sales. We were pleased by the performance of customer friendly bank holiday fixtures in 2013, which saw a rise in attendance of nearly 29,000.

"It is worth noting that that both Cheltenham and Ascot implemented reduced capacity levels for their feature meetings in 2013 which impacted on their totals. The objective in both cases was to improve the customer experience, an aspect which has been a particular focus for racecourses this year.

Atkin added, "The Deloitte research and the annual audits by VisitEngland show that racecourses offer a great customer experience at very competitive pricing compared to other major sports. Both are positives that racecourses will be working hard to build on. Moreover, racecourse attendances have proved incredibly robust in the last five years, when set against the economic backdrop."

The work of Great British Racing remains important to the promotion of race going and in support of racecourse initiatives. In 2013 the extensive media coverage it produced and initiatives such as National Student Raceday and Racemakers, ensured we continue to engage with new and existing audiences.

We look forward to 2014, and the delivery of a number of key projects coming up such as the climax of the inaugural All Weather Championship on Good Friday and other projects at racecourses across the country which are all designed with the customer in mind.

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