Additional $30 million in racing industry funding for 2023/24 racing season

Harness Racing New Zealand has hailed the latest TAB funding announcement as "another good news story for our sport".

TAB New Zealand today announced its direct funding to the domestic racing industry will reach a record-setting $215 million for the upcoming 2023/24 racing season.

TAB NZ’s direct funding of racing is made up of a distribution payment to Racing New Zealand, the application of class 4 gaming proceeds to the Racing Authorised Purpose, and funding of the independent Racing Integrity Board.

Today’s announcement sees a further $30 million made available to the three racing codes in addition to the increases determined at the time the Minister for Racing, Hon Kieran McAnulty approved TAB NZ’s strategic partnering arrangement with Entain.

Just what that specifically means for harness racing is not known, yet.

"We need to discuss with TAB the mechanics and will have more to say once we have had these discussions," says HRNZ Chief Executive Gary Woodham, "but it's another good news story for our sport."

Nick Roberts, Chief Executive Officer of TAB NZ, said the Entain partnership is a revolutionary moment for racing and one that will deliver the ultimate goal of a long-term, sustainable racing industry.

“TAB NZ recognises bold funding decisions are required to sustain this storied industry for generations to come,” Mr Roberts says.

“Leadership across the industry must own the moment and deliver a right-sized industry, with the best animal welfare standards, and a compelling customer product.”

“This extra injection will deliver the best outcomes if it is targeted towards those types of initiatives that enhance the industry in the long run. Simply increasing the funding of the status quo is not sustainable.”

The increased funding comes from an additional $15 million being added to the TAB NZ distribution to Racing NZ for the 2023/24 racing season, raising it to $185 million - a $60 million increase, almost 50%, on the current season’s distribution of $125 million.

Additionally, TAB NZ has determined that it will no longer fund the Racing Integrity Board from its class 4 gaming operation which will allow a contestable fund of $15 million for applications under TAB NZ’s Racing Authorised Purpose.

“We’re keen to back those that are in relentless pursuit of sustainable outcomes - and we expect that will be a key consideration when determining future funding applications,” Mr Roberts says.

“A month into the partnership with Entain, we are deeply encouraged by some of the announcements we have seen out of the industry - especially New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing’s Strategic Funding Document announced two weeks ago.”

For more information, contact:

Nick Roberts
TAB New Zealand Chief Executive Officer
E: [email protected]

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