Owning a Racehorse in the UK
Purchasing a Racehorse
You can either have full or part ownership of a racehorse.
If your pockets run deep and full ownership is an option, a racehorse could set you back between £26 800 to £735 00 (the most expensive horse auctioned via Tattersals). For those who would prefer to have part ownership, you could share the costs between you and a friend, or you could join a syndicate and own a fractional share. Syndicates usually contain ten to twenty people and can own more than one horse. Share prices can range from £6 950 to £47 500 plus VAT. This fee covers the buying of the horses, training, vet bills, transport on race days, and race entry fees for a full two-year career.
Companies such as Race Horse Trade, Goffs, Tattersalls, Mick Easterby Racing, and Highclere can help if you would like to learn more.
Stabling and Training
As mentioned above, if you have part ownership as part of a syndicate then these fees are covered in your share price. If you have sole ownership then you’d be looking at around £16 000 for training costs per year. Stabling costs depend on what kind of stabling and where. Full livery is between £5200 and £7800 per year. Part livery is around £2 080 to £3120 per year depending on how much involvement you have in the chores such as mucking out, cleaning tack, feeding, etc. Grass livery is your cheapest option and costs between £1040 and £1560 per year. The livery costs mentioned are not inclusive of vet fees, farriers, dentist fees, worming, etc.
Nutrition and regular vet check-ups
Correct nutrition is vital for a racehorse and can impact it’s overall performance. You need to make sure they are getting a good balance of fibre, starch, protein, oil, and vitamins. Racehorses are typically fed a diet high in energy, and lower in bulking fibre than non-racing horses. You can even buy specially formulated feeds such as racing mix or racehorse cubes which cost around £15 for 20 – 25kg. These mixes contain ingredients such as lightly rolled oats, flaked barley, molasses, soya hulls, salt, calcium carbonate, vitamin and mineral premix, and live yeast, amongst others. Total cost of feeding a racehorse is around £280 – £550 per year if your horse is signed up for part livery.
You will also need to remember that your horse will need a vet for check-ups. It is best to get horse insurance to cover costly vet bills but you will still need to pay for their annual vaccinations at around £70. Racehorses need regular check-ups, especially before and after a race.
Horseracing is the second largest spectator sport in Great Britain and thus offers some incredible racing events. Perhaps one of the most famous is the Royal Ascot, a major flat racing festival which attracts horses from all over the world every June.
The five British classics include the 1000 Guineas, 2000 Guineas, The Oaks, The Derby and the St Leger and although founded in the late 18th and 19th century, still represent the pinnacle of achievement. Another well-known race is the Cheltenham Festival which takes place in March each year and usually coincides with St Patrick’s Day. There are an extensive number of races per year for those interested; all it takes is a bit of research to find the perfect races for your horse.
If owning a racehorse, in sole or part ownership, sounds like something you’d be interested in then why not take the first steps today? You could be the proud owner of a winning horse before you know it.
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