UK Racecourse Attendance Up Again

Attendance at Brithish Racecourses rose for the 3rd year running

Attendance at British racecourses rose for the third year running in 2011, despite the continuing gloom in the economy, and pushed beyond six million for the first time since 2004, according to figures released  by the Racecourse Association.

In all, there were 6.15 million visitors to British tracks last year, a rise of 6.6% on the figure for 2010, and more than a million people went to the races in July alone. The rise follows concerted attempts by tracks to attract new racegoers, including a “free racing” initiative in April, organised by Racing For Change, which promoted free entry to at least one track each day over the course of the month.

The 2011 season also marked the launch of British Champions Day at Ascot in October which attracted 26,000 spectators, roughly twice the number who attended the Champion Stakes card in the same slot in its previous home at Newmarket.

The average daily attendance at nearly 1,500 meetings over the course of the year rose by 1%, to 4,187.

“I am very pleased to see racecourse attendance on the up for a third year in a row and to break the previous record is fantastic,” Stephen Atkin, the chief executive of the Racecourse Association, said on Tuesday.

“Financially it is a very difficult time for people at the moment, so it is a vindication of the exemplary work being done on Britain’s racecourses that more and more people are enjoying a day out at the races.”


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