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Queensland Racing Takes Giant Strides



The Queensland racing industry’s annual contribution to the state’s economy has grown to exceed more than $1.5 billion.

Earlier today, Racing Queensland published new economic data delivered by IER - a specialist in the tourism, events and entertainment industries - which outlines the size and scope of the racing industry.

Click here to download the report.

Across the state, the racing industry is responsible for sustaining 11,570 full-time jobs – an increase of 2024 full-time jobs from the 2016/17 IER report – which provides $850.4 million in salaries and wages, whilst supporting more than 40,000 participants across the thoroughbred, greyhound and harness codes.

In a sign of racing’s popularity in the Sunshine State, almost 833,000 people attended a race meeting in 2017/18, making it one of the most popular sports in Queensland.

“As an organisation, we exist to champion great racing and events which connect Queensland communities,” Racing Queensland Chairman Steve Wilson AM said.

“We are mindful that our 40,000 participants, inclusive of our 129 racing clubs, are the lifeblood of our industry and continue to serve at the coalface of our sport, which is why we have worked diligently during my time on the Board to increase returns and to make it more affordable to race.

“Since the last IER report in 2016/17, the Queensland racing industry’s economic contribution to the state’s economy has grown by more than 10%.

“With 43% of the $1.5 billion in value added contribution being realised in regional economies, it underlines the significance of the size and scope of the Queensland racing industry.

“We remain steadfast in our commitment to encourage people to buy, breed and race in the Sunshine State.”

In recent times, the Palaszczuk Government has invested heavily in the racing industry through the delivery of the four-year, $70.4 million Country Racing Support Package.

In late 2018, the Government also announced it would provide an additional $90 million in prize money for the three codes of racing over the next three years.

Since the last IER report handed down in 2016/17, volunteer numbers have grown to 7852, while there has been a strong uplift in the tourism and economic contribution provided by the state’s marquee carnivals.

Across the three codes, thoroughbreds were responsible for $1.19 billion of economic contribution, while greyhounds contributed $163.1 million and harness $166.2 million.

Other highlights include:

  • 129 clubs;
  • 118 racecourses;
  • 12,545 Races (Thoroughbred: 4,568, Greyhound: 5,623, Harness: 2,354); and
  • 12,164 Animals in Training (Thoroughbred: 7,793, Greyhound: 3,092, Harness: 1,279).

Click here to see a full report of the size and scope of the Queensland racing industry.