Your first impression after the confirmation of your membership in December 2023?
We were pleased to have membership confirmed. Our racecourse partners were keen to have direct involvement in discussions that involve and impact upon them, and hopefully membership will now deliver that.
What can WoTA bring to your company? And what your company can bring to WoTA?
We have close relationships with many of the WoTA members, and membership will help to strengthen those. Sharing ideas, experiences and collaborating is vital if pool betting on horse racing is to thrive.
We operate in a very competitive market place and we would welcome sharing our experiences with those facing similar challenges. We are also owned by our racecourse partners, so we will also bring direct engagement with British racecourses.
What can WoTA do differently (or change priorities) to become even more relevant for you?
We need to experience the workings of WoTA a little more before feeling qualified to make suggestions about how it might do things differently. But we look forward to engaging with the team to positively impact its work and priorities.
Our main challenges in 2024 mirror those of the industry in Britain – to grow interest in the sport. We are fortunate that racing is a well-attended spectator sport here, but it faces significant challenges from other leisure activities. The wider industry is trialling a ‘Premier Racing’ concept – with the aim to showcase the best race meetings – and we will be working to highlight this initiative and assist in making it a success.
Specifically relating to us rather than broader industry matters, we also have a key commercial contract expiring in 2025. We will be working with our racecourse partners to determine the right strategic route for them and pool betting on racing taking place at their racecourses.
What kind of relationship do you have with other tote/horserace betting operators?
Many in our team have worked in and around the pool betting/racing industry for many years. Our Chairman ran the Dutch Totalisator in the late 1980’s; I previously ran the pool betting part of the Horserace Totalisator Board. We have close working and personal relationships with many others in the industry and welcome the support and counsel that they provide. We hope that this can be furthered via our membership of WoTA.
Where do you see your company in a 10 – 15 years’ time?
We are owned by the racecourses and we play an integral part in the raceday experience. I expect that to continue and for the racecourses themselves to play an increasingly significant role in the development of pool betting on the racing at their venues. British racecourses have to manage many betting relationships, with fixed odds bookmakers being key commercial partners. But their ownership of Britbet and closer involvement in the delivery of pool betting opens up a number of strategic opportunities for our partners and the wider sport. I expect their involvement in pool betting to become increasingly integral to them in the coming years.
What do you do when you are not in charge of Horserace betting issues?
Our next day of not operating oncourse is 23rd December 2024. I will let you know then.
Please tell us what is your best memory of a sport (horseracing or other) event you have attended?
I owned a horse that won at the Cheltenham Festival – it does not get better than that. Though seeing Sheffield Wednesday beating Sheffield United at Wembley in an FA Cup semi-final comes close.