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RQ provides record-breaking returns

Racing Queensland has released its trading results for the 2020/21 financial year.

During today’s Annual Meeting at Eagle Farm, RQ Chairman Steve Wilson AM announced the organisation had recorded a $6.2 million normalised consolidated profit versus $4.3 million in FY20.

Normalised revenue grew to a record $336 million, an increase of 19.2%, while returns to participants reached $271 million, which was well above the organisation’s $250 million target, an increase of 22%.

Following record-breaking returns to participants in FY21, more than $15 million in additional funding will be delivered in the New Year after last week’s prize money announcement.

“The building blocks for a bright and prosperous future for the Queensland racing industry continue to be laid,” Mr Wilson said.

“For a sixth year, I have enjoyed the honour of leading this enormous industry, which plays such an important role in the fabric of our state.

“During this time, transformational change has been achieved so now we can start to ‘close the gap’ with our rival states.

“Pleasingly, our wagering market share, increased 3% to 16.9% as a measure of interest in our sport.”

Over the course of FY21, wagering on Queensland racing product increased by 29.7%, enjoying strong turnover growth across all three codes to a record-high of $6.2 billion. Turnover figures included:

  • Thoroughbreds - $4.2 billion (+28.1%);
  • Greyhounds - $1.4 billion (+35.4%); and
  • Harness - $672 million (+29.1%).

In addition to the unusual trading conditions, RQ CEO Brendan Parnell said an additional 1,141 (+9.7%) TAB races were run in FY21.

“It’s pleasing to see such strong year-on-year growth,” Mr Parnell said.

“But it remains an abnormal trading environment, with lockdowns, reduced sporting content and restricted travel all contributing to the increases.

“Nonetheless, bookmaker and inter-state TAB revenue grew by 35.5% to $140.2 million, while QTAB revenue improved 8.6% to $81.8 million."

With more than $280 million in projects either completed or in the pipeline there is a significant commitment to racing infrastructure in Queensland.

FY21 saw the $24.8 million redevelopment of the Ipswich Turf Club completed, while the new synthetic track at the Sunshine Coast Turf Club was also delivered as part of $8.9 million worth of works.

Pleasingly, RQ received business case approval for the $37.5 million redevelopment of the Gold Coast Turf Club, which will bring night racing to Aquis Park in 2024.

Like the Sunshine Coast, a Polytrack will be installed at the Gold Coast to ensure the same synthetic surface is available throughout South East Queensland.

At the Greater Brisbane Greyhound Centre, detailed design and community engagement have advanced, with racing expected to occur by 2024.

“RQ moved to a largely self-delivery model for country racing infrastructure to accelerate dozens of projects,” Mr Wilson said.

“These strategic infrastructure projects will support our vibrant network of clubs, enhancing their facilities and sustainability.”

Finally, meaningful strides were made in the animal care space following the Martin Inquiry recommendations, with the Off-The-Track Program delivering its first initiatives in FY22 with a ‘subsidised lessons program’ to support retired racehorses as they transition from the racing industry into the domestic horse community.

A QOTT Acknowledged Re-trainers Program has also been launched with expressions of interest from people who currently re-train and rehome thoroughbreds or standardbreds opening in October.

Click here to see a full copy of the FY21 Racing Queensland Annual Report.