British racing set for 17 World Pool days in 2021

The UK Tote Group, leading British racecourses and their media rights partners, principally Racecourse Media Group (RMG), have all worked closely with the Hong Kong Jockey Club which has confirmed the following World Pool events on British racedays for 2021:

  • QIPCO 2000 Guineas Day – Newmarket Rowley Mile Racecourse, Saturday 1st May*
  • Cazoo Derby Day – Epsom Downs Racecourse, Saturday 5th June*
  • Five days of Royal Ascot – Ascot Racecourse, Tuesday 15th to Saturday 19th June
  • Coral-Eclipse Day – Sandown Park Racecourse, Saturday 3rd July*
  • QIPCO King George Diamond Day – Ascot Racecourse, Saturday 24th July*
  • The first three days of the Qatar Goodwood Festival – Goodwood Racecourse, Tuesday 27th July to Thursday 29th July*
  • Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup Day – Ascot Racecourse, Saturday 7th August*
  • The first three days of the Welcome to Yorkshire Ebor Festival – York Racecourse, Wednesday 18th to Friday 20th August*
  • QIPCO British Champions Day – Ascot Racecourse, Saturday 16th October

Fixtures marked with * are new World Pool days for 2021.

The increased number of simulcast meetings (and by extension World Pool meetings) was approved by the Hong Kong Government in February and sees the number of days increase by 14 days, to a total of 37 days this year.

So far, in addition to the 17 World Pool events on British racedays, a further five new World Pool days have been confirmed, with two racedays from South Africa and three from France.

World Pool ensures there are larger and deeper pools, smoothing pricing and driving an increase in value for customers, as racing fans from around the world bet into a single pool. World Pool at Royal Ascot in 2019 saw pools grow by over 400% to £92.2 million, and last year there was a further 50% increase to £137 million. The increased liquidity from a global customer base helped create greater value for Tote customers with the pool price beating the Starting Price (SP) by 32% in 2019 and 9% in 2020.

In 2021, Tote customers will continue to benefit from the better odds generated by increased liquidity due to World Pool. In addition, Tote customers can be assured of always receiving the best odds available with Tote Guarantee and Tote+ (Tote Plus) in place for every UK and Irish race. Tote+ provides customers of with a 10% dividend enhancement, while Tote Guarantee ensures the Tote will always match the industry Starting Price (SP) on all Win bets, or exceed it if the pool price is bigger.

Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges, Chief Executive Officer of the Hong Kong Jockey Club, said: “This underscores another important achievement made by the Hong Kong Jockey Club and the Tote, as well as their partners across British racing in ensuring racing fans around the world can bet on some of the best days in the flat racing calendar via World Pool. The extra World Pool days across the summer will also strengthen our efforts in effectively addressing the illegal gambling issues in Hong Kong as it will help to prevent illegal and offshore bookmakers from luring Hong Kong residents to bet on overseas races during the off-season. We look forward to continuing to work with all in British racing to refine, develop and promote World Pool in the months and years ahead.”

John Williamson, Chairman of the UK Tote Group, said: “We are delighted to work with the Hong Kong Jockey Club and our partners in British and Irish racing to ensure the sport benefits from World Pool events. I would like to offer my sincere thanks to Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges and the Hong Kong Jockey Club team for their leadership and cooperation. Their pioneering approach to innovating the pool betting offering for racing fans around the world is truly outstanding. This provides us with a significant opportunity to showcase British and Irish racing to an international audience.”

His Grace The Duke of Richmond and Gordon, Owner of Goodwood Racecourse said: “Goodwood is delighted to be staging three of the new World Pool fixtures later this year, and it is a really important development for British Racing to be playing such a significant role in the growth of international cooperation around pool betting. The Qatar Goodwood Festival is the highlight of Goodwood’s year, and being recognised as staging races with a global significance is very important to us. I would like to thank Winfried and his team at the Hong Kong Jockey Club for their vision and hard work in helping bring racing jurisdictions across the world together and creating the World Pool which we are certain will go from strength to strength.”

Bridget Guerin, Chair of York Racecourse, said: “York Racecourse is delighted that all three of our midweek racedays of the Welcome to Yorkshire Ebor Festival will be included as World Pool events. This includes our three Group 1 races including the Longines World’s Best Race, the £1m Juddmonte International.  We very much appreciate the support we have had from the Hong Kong Jockey Club and all parties working together to make this positive announcement. We look forward to staging some of the best racing in the world for race fans around the world to follow, engage with and enjoy.”

Guy Henderson, Chief Executive of Ascot Racecourse, said: “Having launched World Pool at Royal Ascot in 2019, we are delighted that our partnership with the Hong Kong Jockey Club has expanded further with the inclusion of QIPCO King George Diamond Day and the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup. Both events have international significance and their inclusion in World Pool will add further to their profile.”

Nevin Truesdale, Chief Executive of The Jockey Club, said: “We’re delighted that the Coral Eclipse will be added to The Jockey Club’s existing portfolio of World Pool events for 2021. As one of the UK’s premier Flat races and the first point in the season at which the Classic generation take on their older counterparts, I’m sure it will capture the imagination of racing fans globally. It is a race we value highly and we look forward to continuing to work with the UK Tote Group, Hong Kong Jockey Club, and RMG in this exciting venture for British racing.”

Nick Mills, Chief Commercial Officer of Racecourse Media Group, which represents the media interests of The Jockey Club, Goodwood and York racecourses, said: “Working with its racecourse shareholders and British Champions Series, RMG is delighted to have helped facilitate the staging of these showpiece fixtures as World Pool events. We have enjoyed a long and valued relationship with the Hong Kong Jockey Club, and we are very grateful to them for all their support.”