New reforms to improve UK ownership experience
The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has launched a package of reforms to modernise and simplify the administration of racehorse ownership.
The reforms have been developed following extensive consultation with existing owners and are part of the BHA’s commitment to improve the experience of being an owner and attract new owners to the sport.
The measures will mean the task of ownership administration is more convenient, efficient and easy to understand, with the transfer of the registration and management process online expected to save owners thousands of hours a year of filling in forms.
The simplification and reduction of ownership fees will also save owners thousands of pounds per year in total, with the types and number of ownership options simplified to mean there are now only five types rather than eight: Sole, Company, Partnership, Syndicate and Racing Club.
New and existing owners now have access to the new Racing Admin system, where a newly designed, intuitive ownership portal enables them to manage their ownerships online and keep up to date with their horses and ownerships. It also facilitates free access to a number of enhanced features such as the ability to search the race programme.
New registrations are also handled through the portal which will not only mean the process is more user friendly, but also ensures swifter turnaround time between submitting the forms and the approval of applications.
The reforms benefit existing owners through the alignment of re-registration fees, which will now fall on one date in the year to reduce the drip feeding of charges and correspondence received.
A new code of conduct for syndicates has also been brought in, which highlights a number of basic requirements that all syndicate managers will need to ensure are met. These have been added to the Rules of Racing in order to protect syndicate members.
Richard Wayman, Chief Operating Officer of the BHA, said: “Making the prospect of racehorse ownership an attractive one is central to the industry's strategy to grow the sport.
“The package of reforms has been shaped by extensive consultation with current owners and ensures the administration of racehorse ownership prioritises the customer experience.
“New and existing owners will feel the benefit of a modernized, simplified process of administration which is cheaper, easier to understand and more convenient to use than before.”
Charlie Liverton, Chief Executive of the Racehorse Owners’ Association, said: "Owners have long-complained that their first steps on the road to ownership were characterised by red tape and confusing ownership structures followed by numerous fees.
“The owners’ survey undertaken in 2016 highlighted this and these changes are therefore very welcome. Simplifying, reducing and aligning the costs involved is a very positive step.
“The ROA and owners, Sole as well as Syndicate, were involved in improving the ownership administration system and the benefits should be felt by all.
“Racehorse ownership should be engaging and most of all, fun, and hopefully the changes announced today will enhance the experience”.
Nick Craven, Communications Director at Weatherbys, added:“Owners play a vital part in the thoroughbred industry and we are confident that they will welcome the new administration processes that we have developed alongside the BHA. Indeed we have received really positive feedback from many owners in the first few days following the launch of the new Racing Admin system.
“As well as online tutorials, we also have specialist teams in place to assist owners should they need any help or have any questions when using the new system.”