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The New York Racing Association Inc. (NYRA) and FOX Sports, a division of Fox Corporation, announced an extended relationship arrangement this week. FOX Sports has been appointed the official wagering affiliate of NYRA Bets and the leading media supplier for elite thoroughbred racing for the next decade, according to the terms of the agreement.
A FOX Sports affiliate had the option to buy a 25 percentage stake in NYRA Bets LLC, a leading Advance Deposit Wagering (ADW) site introduced in 2016 and open to consumers in 30 states across the country, under a previous media rights deal between the two parties.
In the summer of 2021, the subsidiary will exercise this option, pending final regulatory approval. The recently announced arrangement helps the subsidiary to raise its equity investment in NYRA Bets in the future.
Horse racing viewing
Despite the fact that an extraordinary year affected live sports around the world, horse racing tended to run smoothly and comfortably. New viewers were exposed to horse racing by viewing an incredible volume of programming through FOX Sports’ family of networks, resulting in record growth for NYRA Bets in 2020.
NYRA Bets produced $225 million in wagering handle in 2020, a more than 100 percent rise over 2019. This was fueled by a substantial expansion of live television coverage.
FOX Sports Executive Vice President and Head of Strategy and Analytics Michael Mulvihill said: “The remarkably rapid expansion of NYRA Bets, and the digital ADW wagering marketplace, make this anrecord growth for NYRA Bets in 2020. to deepen and broaden its investment in both premier media rights and the high-growth sports wagering industry.
‘Continued growth for NYRA Bets’
“With our investment options in NYRA Bets, FOX is now uniquely positioned as the only media company with strategic stakes in digital bet-taking businesses in horse racing, sports betting, poker and casino gaming. We’re confident that our television partnership with NYRA will fuel continued growth for NYRA Bets in the years ahead.“
NYRA President and CEO Dave O’Rourke added: “FOX Sports has shown an unwavering commitment to the sport of horse racing over the past five years. The strength of our partnership with FOX Sports, and the continued expansion of our high-quality telecasts, has proven to be hugely beneficial for the New York racing community and the sport as a whole.”
The new deal will stretch FOX Sports’ broadcast rights with NYRA until 2030, as well as increase exclusivity for regular racing at Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course. FOX Sports plans to air at least 700 hours of programming from Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course each year under the current agreement, which grants the network exclusive national television rights at both venues until 2030, barring previous agreements.
‘The very best in horse racing coverage’
Tony Allevato, President, NYRA Bets said: “NYRA is delighted to extend our relationship with FOX Sports. We look forward to continuing to work closely with the FOX Sports team over the next decade to grow NYRA Bets while continuing to present the very best in horse racing coverage to more sports fans than ever before.”
The Belmont Stakes Racing Festival and the Belmont Stakes are not included in the deal.