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Ownership: Get into it!

From the fun of the occasion to cheering on a roughie, there's something about horse racing that's fundamentally Australian - including the fact that everyone can get involved.

What makes racehorse ownership in Australia so exciting is that champions can come from anywhere, and anyone can own them. And even if your horse isn't a champion, owners will tell you that it makes no difference - it's all about the journey.

One of the greatest myths about racehorse ownership is that it's difficult and expensive to get involved. It's not. And, most importantly, owners come from all walks of life, many with no previous connections to racing.

Owning a racehorse is not confined to multi-millionaires. There are many ways to become involved in racehorse ownership in Queensland and become involved with the industry. The purchase and ongoing costs of a racehorse can be very affordable and the joy you get from being involved in the industry, not just a spectator, is immense.

Topics covered on this page


How do I get involved?

There are several forms of ownership available that cater to all budgets:

  • Sole ownership: Owning a horse outright gives you the chance to receive 100% of the owners prizemoney, name the horse and race it in your colours. You will also pay for 100% of expenses but have the benefit and flexibility of decision making and direct communication from the stable. 
  • Partnership: When you race the horse with up to twenty family members, friends or stable clients and share the thrill of ownership for a percentage of the cost and prize money. You can appoint one owner as a manager to handle communications and accounts with the trainer or this can be done individually.
  • Syndicate: Registering a syndicate with your friends and family (up to 20 people), and the Syndicate then owns a share in the horse. For example you and your workmates might form a syndicate that has a 10% share in a horse. The nominated Syndicate Manager would be responsible for all communication to the syndicate members from the racing manager or stable directly, and in charge of the distribution of the syndicate’s share in prize money. 
  • Promoters & Syndications: Owning a horse purchased through a licensed promoter means you will own a share in the horse with a group of people and share the thrill of ownership for a percentage of the cost. There is the added benefit of legal documents (PDS) which include publicly disclosed details such as all costs and vet checks, and a signed partnership agreement outlining the procedures for managing the horse, such as how to vote on the horse name, how to distribute trophies and how to manage disputes. A registered Syndicator must hold a license with the Australian Securities Investment Commission (ASIC) and is licensed to publicly sell shares in a racehorse. The Syndicators offer Product Disclosure Statements (PDS’) which are approved by the local regulator (Queensland Racing Integrity Commission) before being offered to the public. List of Queensland Approved Promoters
  • Lease: Leasing a horse can be a cheaper option to experience horse racing. You can lease a horse with your friends and family without purchasing or owning the horse. The Lessee pays for all of the training fees and associated costs, keeps a percentage of any prizemoney won, and returns a percentage back to the owner (typically 20-30%).


Pre-purchase Planning

Before purchasing a horse, make sure you give some serious thought to this commitment.

Lay out your objectives from the start and set yourself some achievable goals to help you plan your journey. Determine how much money you can afford to allocate to horse ownership, which will help you work out the way in which you'll be able to participate. 

The next decision, if buying a share, is if you want to take a small share in a more expensive horse or a larger share in a cheaper horse. The size of your share will also dictate the monthly or regular costs to maintain the horse.

Once you've decided how much you want to invest, you will need to establish a budget. This budget will need to consider not only the cost of purchasing the horse, but ongoing expenses and unexpected costs that may occur (unless you purchase a miRunners share then the cost is consistent each month).

When considering the amount you want to spend and the relevant percentage, you will need to allow for the additional costs involved in the purchase of the horse, such as vetting, transport, agistment, insurance etc. and any commission charged by a trainer or agent.

Ownership Calculator

How much do you want to spend? Use the Ownership Calculator below to find out the approximate cost of ownership, depending on the size of your share in a horse. Please note that these costs are estimates only and while the estimate includes all the typical costs outlined underneath the Calculator, it excludes major nominations and any surgery. The cost estimate generated is indicative only and due consideration should be given to your specific circumstances.

Ownership calculator

Select code:
Where am I racing?
Enter total purchase price

This is the distance your horse will travel directly from the sale (to the breaker, spelling farm or trainer), which calculates the approximate cost of initial transport of your horse from the sale.


This is the approximate cost of the initial transport of your horse from the sale to the breaker, spelling farm or trainer, as calculated from distance traveled.


This may be a separate cost incurred in addition to purchase price or it may be included in your trainer’s initial bill. This is an approximate cost and may vary.


Scoping is a veterinary procedure that needs to be done on all racehorses following purchase. Scoping involves the insertion of a flexible endoscope with a camera attached, through one nostril of the horse to the back of its throat. This technique allows a visual examination of the structure and function of the back of the throat while the horse is breathing and swallowing.

Total upfront cost $0
What’s your % share?

Total cost of ownership

Total price / Share % $0
Avg. monthly fees $0
Total Estimated cost of ownership
For the first year

*Per animal based on % share of ownership, costs are estimates only and are to be used as guides.

In addition to a trainers stipulated daily training fee, you will be responsible for all associated fees, which may include (but is not limited to) the following:

  • Trainers invoice: (Daily training fee) medications, equipment, race track fees (eg: track gallops, walking machines), farrier, dentist, chiropractor/physiotherapist, staff attendance (barrier trials, race days), race club fees (eg:. barrier trials, nominations, scratchings, acceptances).
  • Vet invoice: Worming, wound treatment, blood tests.
  • Transport invoice: Transport to and from spelling farms and race tracks.
  • Spelling Farm invoice: Agistment costs for paddocks, boxes, pre-training, breaking-in, farrier, dentist, vet.
  • Race club invoice: Nomination fee, acceptance fee.
  • Racing Queensland/QRIC invoices: QTIS nomination fee, horse registration fee, syndicate name registration fee, jockey colours registration fee.

How do I buy a horse/share in a horse in Queensland?

Your racehorse can be chosen through various methods and at different ages. You are best to be guided through this purchasing process by an industry professional. Options include: 

  • Syndicators: Australian syndicators have taken a world leading role in trying to remove the barriers to entry that have always made racing an exclusive pastime. Recommended registered Queensland syndicators include:

    • miRunners buy a 'unit' in a racehorse from as little as $200 and pay only $16 a month. miRunners aims to give people racing experiences that are both highly rewarding and affordable. Read more and buy a unit

    • First Light Racing the first registered syndicator in Queensland. When you own with First Light Racing, you become part of #TeamFIRST and instantly begin enjoying the ultimate racehorse ownership experience, built on a foundation of unparalleled success for owners. Read more and find a horse here

  • Auctions/Sales, such as Magic Millions, are an excellent option for purchasing a horse outright. If you are a first time buyer be sure to get assistance from a professional when choosing your horse (see details of trainers and bloodstock agents below). Magic Millions holds several sales per year. VIEW DETAILS OF UPCOMING SALES HERE
  • Trainers are an extremely knowledgeable resource for helping you find a horse or share in a horse that best suits your objectives and budget. You can then work with the trainer on your horse's journey to the track, and hopefully, the winners circle. Many trainers have horses or shares in horses available now. View a list of all Queensland trainers HERE to find trainers with horses available near you.

  • Bloodstock agents are independent experts who can give you all the advice you need and become the conduit to assisting you in taking those first steps into racehorse ownership. 

    Bloodstock Agents specialise in selecting yearlings to purchase at sales, purchasing a racehorse that has already competed and assist in managing a racehorse’s career. A Bloodstock Agent can also assist with all paperwork involved in becoming an owner.

    Engaging a Bloodstock Agent is a smart move for a group of potential owners who are keen to invest and need assistance selecting their horse. For individuals contemplating investing significantly in the industry, a Bloodstock Agent can also help develop a business plan and strategy for making your investment work.

    The Federation of Bloodstock Agents Australia (FBAA) currently has 29 accredited members which includes both Australia's major horse sale companies and 27 highly respected individual bloodstock agents or agencies. Members of the FBAA are required to operate with the utmost integrity and professionalism. All members abide by the Industry Code of Conduct and are bound by the strict "FBAA Code of Ethics"

    To find out more about the Federation of Bloodstock Agents Australia (FBAA) and their members, go to: