Owners welcome upgraded facilities at renovated Ripon
Owners and trainers have welcome the latest dividend paid by Ripon's new betting system. The North Yorkshire track vowed to invest in the course when it introduced RiponBet in place of the Tote four years ago.
The course's independent betting operation is reckoned to have made 'a significant contribution' to £1 million worth of improvements for racegoers, such as replacing the permanent big screen, relaying the surface in front of the Club and Paddock Stands and the renovation of three bars.
Ripon has now unveiled refurbished facilities for owners and trainers, while each owner and trainer with a runner also receives a complimentary £10 refreshment voucher.
ROA chief executive Charlie Liverton officially opened the renovated facilities and said: "The new owners' and trainers facility is a wonderful addition to Ripon racecourse and the ROA was delighted to be involved in its opening.
"Investment in new facilities like this for owners, the single-biggest investors in the sport, is crucial. We know from the 2016 National Racehorse Owners Survey that racecourse experiences have a direct impact on an owner’s tenure in the sport. Win or lose, owners need to be accommodated appropriately if they are to stay in the ownership ranks.
"Ripon’s new facility is sure to make the owners' experience an even more memorable one and for that we send our thanks.”
Trainer Ruth Carr added: "Everyone has been impressed by the renovations and the complimentary voucher has been greatly appreciated. We love running our horses at Ripon and the new facilities are now up there with the best in the north."
Ripon managing director James Hutchinson said: "For smaller courses such as Ripon, building refurbishments are done with the intention of keeping its close-knit and unique atmosphere along with the character of its picturesque setting.
"We believe we have achieved this and more with the redevelopment of our owners' and trainers' facilities."
RiponBet replaced the Tote pool betting system and is an alternative to betting with the bookmaker - it has attracted criticism with complaints that the return is worse than the starting price.