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RV reports turnover increase in first half

Racing Victoria officials are pleased with their results for the first half of the current racing season.

With an acting chairman since October and an interim chief executive in place since January, Racing Victoria has announced turnover is up six per cent on Victorian horse racing for the first half of the 2016-17 season while revenue is up 4.4 per cent in the first half of the financial year.

Acting chief executive Giles Thompson said the results were achieved despite Melbourne having its 10th wettest spring on record.

He said Victoria lost six meetings because of wet tracks with other meetings either transferred to other venues or to the synthetic tracks.

“The investment in our tracks has worked,” Thompson said.

Turnover was up despite the wet tracks impacting field sizes which dropped from an average of 10.2 per race last season to 9.9,.

Melbourne’s premier meetings were up from 12.3 to 12.5.

“The total wagering market if you speak to the corporate bookmakers, including sport, is up about five per cent,” Thompson said.

“For a large mature racing industry to be growing at six per cent, I reckon is pretty good.”

Thompson said there had been a shift away from parimutuel wagering to fixed odds and he said RV gets more per bet from their joint venture with Tabcorp than with corporate bookmakers.

Thompson said the introduction of and the availability of the channel being seen on free-to-air TV had helped with the turnover increase.

Prize money of more than $105 million was distributed to participants, an increase of 2.2 per cent on the previous 12 months but added RV was conscious of the prize money increases that came into effect in NSW last year.

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