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By Graham Potter | Thursday, February 25, 2021

The figures are impressive and the envy of every other state … and, quite rightly, it is the rollout of the value of the increased prize-money levels announced by Racing New South Wales … and exactly where the additional benefits have been placed and to whose advantage … that has been the focus of attention.

In truth though, the most telling part of the story, which is in danger of being lost in translation, is the partnership that created the climate to be able to come up with bold ideas, to initiate a working plan to make those ideas work and to push that through to the point where the idea turned into a reality … and that partnership is the one between Racing New South Wales and the NSW government.

Peter V’landys, CEO of Racing NSW, once stated that he viewed making good contacts and turning them into good working relationships as one of the prime assets of growing any business and there can be no better example of that working so well for mutual benefit than the understanding that exists between Racing NSW and NSW government.

For many racing precincts, however obvious the benefits might be, it is often seemingly a struggle to get their respective racing ministers and government to understand the true value of racing’s contribution to the government coffers and therefore, ultimately, to the community at large.

The Chairman of Racing NSW, Russell Balding, while thanking the NSW government and the Racing Minister for their hard work and support when speaking at the prize-money increase announcement, also put racing’s value into clear perspective when he stated, ‘The racing industry contributes some $3.6 billion annually to the NSW economy and some supports some 27 000 full-time or equivalent jobs.’

So, when a state government and racing minister ‘gets it’ … as is the case in New South Wales … it sets a high bar for other racing precincts to try and emulate.

Peter V’Landys determination to meet an end goal and his power of persuasion to get key partners on board to support that endeavour is an obvious plus in this scenario and to hear the NSW Racing Minister Kevin Anderson thanking racing, shows just what can be achieved with everyone is reading from the same page.

This was Racing Minister Kevin Anderson speaking at the announcement of the latest significant prize-money increases:

“This increase in prize-money is the shot in the arm that racing needs to continue to create jobs and to continue to create investments in New South Wales” said Anderson.

“The racing industry is a SIGNIFICANT PART of the economy of New South Wales. It drives the economy, particularly through 2020, when the rest of the industries lights were turned out, racing continued right throughout this period.

“So, full marks to the racing industry … and now, as part of that, the THANK YOU is this increase in prize-money.

“It is not only good for jobs and stimulus, but, also for racing. It has got a great flow-on effect on reginal communities that thrive on having their race meeting every so often.

“It is not just pocket change either and what this does is this prize-money lifts the profile of a race and indeed the race meeting itself. It attracts quality fields, draws a crowd as well as increasing turnover. When you do all of that, it has a multiplier effect which means you have a circle of success for the racing industry … and that’s what drives this increase in prize-money.

“This is a great announcement, where everybody has WORKED TOGETHER.

“Racing plays a significant part in the NSW economy and we look forward to its continued success,” concluded Anderson.

Just as the prize-money figure has been raised, so too has this latest development raised the bar for some other states in terms of them working on improving their relationship with their state governments to take their partnership to the next level.. Afterall, you don’t always want to be playing catch-up.

Clearly, as shown by the New South Wales model, that is the way to go to ensure the industry’s future prosperity.

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