Wexford is ‘centre of excellence’ for racing industry

Action from Wexford Racecourse which features favourably in a new report just published, Pic; HR!

Members of Wexford County Council attending today’s monthly meeting received a copy of the recently published report into the Economic Impact of Irish Breeding and Racing in Wexford and Wicklow which was commissioned by Horse Racing Ireland and carried out by Deloitte.

The key findings reveal that the racing industry in Wexford and Wicklow supports over 1,600 jobs, the direct stimulated expenditure of the industry in these counties is an estimated €84 million per annum, there are over 750 registered breeders in the region, representing 12% of Ireland’s total, and a total breeding revenue of €29 million, and an estimated €24 million invested in capital projects in Wexford and Wicklow in the last decade.

Wexford is the only racecourse in the region hosting jump fixtures from March to October and the course attracts in excess of 14,000 attendees over 10 fixtures, with an estimated expenditure of over €1 million attributable to on-course activities. The average attendance in 2018 was 1,421.

There are 53 trainers located across the two counties, represented about 9% of the trainers in Ireland. They are predominately jumps focused, with leading handlers from region including Colin Bowe and Cheltenham Festival winning trainer Paul Nolan.

The report also notes that the point-to-point industry is also well represented in the region where Colin Bowe has rapidly become one of the country’s leading producers of young horses through pointing, including recent Cheltenham Festival winners Envo Allen, Samcro and Arkle winner Western Warhorse. Also mentioned as producing top young horses are Donnchadh Doyle, Denis Murphy, Sean Doyle, Liam Kenny and Cormac Doyle.

The core industry is estimated to employ around 700 people in Wexford and Wicklow.

“The message which comes through strongly from this report is that the rich tradition of horse racing and breeding in Wexford and Wicklow contributes to the creation of a significant rural industry which delivers economically in the counties,” said Brian Kavanagh, Chief Executive of Horse Racing Ireland, who added; “The industry in Wexford and Wicklow also witnesses significant inward foreign investment, marking the region down as a centre of excellence for its training yards, stud farms and support services.”

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