Australia / Press Releases
In the Money: Horse Racing Wagering and Attendance To Rise

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by Tommy Wu
Oct 23 2019

A strong rivalry between Victoria and New South Wales surrounding the Melbourne Cup and the Everest horse races is anticipated to benefit the Horse and Dog Racing industry and the Horse and Sports Betting industry, as both reap the benefits of the increased publicity.

Despite declining attendances and wagering turnover at the Melbourne Cup for much of the past five years, industry research firm IBISWorld expects wagering turnover on the 158th edition of the race to grow from the previous year, when wet weather negatively affected betting and attendance.

‘Wagering turnover on the Melbourne Cup at TAB outlets has declined over the past five years as punters have increasingly bet through digital channels, but this trend is likely to reverse if the weather holds up on the day,’ according to IBISWorld Senior Industry Analyst, Tommy Wu.

In contrast, online bookmakers such as Sportsbet and Beteasy are anticipated to continue recording growth and taking market share from traditional bookmakers. This trend follows the wider trend in wagering turnover on thoroughbred racing, with wagering through TAB outlets stagnating over the five years through 2017-18, while other bookmakers have doubled their turnover over the same period.

‘The way Australians bet on the nation’s biggest race has changed over the past five years, but betting on the Melbourne Cup will likely remain a constant as it also attracts individuals who do not usually gamble,’ said Mr Wu.

In contrast, the Everest has grown significantly since its inception, as highlighted by the increase in prize money from $10 million in its first year to $14 million in the current year. The growing buzz around the Everest has made it an event that Racing NSW and racetracks in the state can build their calendar around. This trend can be seen with the Golden Eagle being added to the NSW Spring Racing Carnival this year, placing two of Australia’s richest races together in the state.

Despite the rivalry between New South Wales and Victoria, as both sides ask for changes to dates and times of various races, racing associations in both states are likely to work together to ensure there are no scheduling clashes and there is sufficient interest and wagering activity for both races.

‘From an industry perspective for horse racing and bookmakers, the rivalry is benefiting both the Horse and Dog Racing industry and the Horse and Sports Betting industry. At the end of the day, the rivalry is helping to generate greater interest in Australian horse racing,’ said Mr Wu.


IBISWorld reports used to develop this release:


For more information, to obtain industry reports, or arrange an interview with an analyst, please contact:
Kim Do
Strategic Media Advisor – IBISWorld Pty Ltd
Tel: 03 9906 3641

Mobile: 0422 773 995