Sky Sports Racing has extended its domestic pay TV and digital platforms partnership with Ascot Racecourse, meaning that the channel will cover all of Ascot’s 25 annual horse racing fixtures until at least 2024.
The firm’s current rights agreement with Ascot was due to expire at the end of the year. However, following the success of this year’s Royal Ascot which attracted an audience of 2.2 million UK viewers in June according to the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board, both entities have struck a three-year extension.
Juliet Slot, Chief Commercial Officer at Ascot, stated: “We have developed an excellent partnership with the whole team at Sky Sports Racing since rejoining the refreshed channel last year.
“The growth in their audiences across our time as our Pay TV partner has supported our desire to bring Ascot and all our annual racing to a broader, wider consumer base alongside our Terrestrial partner ITV; reaching new audiences is an important part of our brand strategy.
“Alongside the excellent racing broadcast we benefit from the strong digital audiences with attheraces.com and the broader promotional support from the Sky Sports portfolio. It is a huge pleasure to be announcing this extension to the end of 2023 prior to my departure from Ascot.”
The renewed partnership continues to strengthen Sky Sports Racing’s growing portfolio of domestic and international rights such as the Breeders’ Cup, Kentucky Derby, Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and the Coral Welsh Grand National.
Rob Webster, Managing Director, Sky Sports, commented: “We are delighted to be renewing our partnership with Ascot Racecourse for an additional three years. Sky Sports has supported horse racing for over two decades and it’s a sport we’re very passionate about. Sky Sports Racing continues to provide a platform for the best of international horse racing and meetings from Ascot Racecourse are a key part of our offering to our customers.”
Additionally, under a separate long-term deal, At The Races will continue to manage licensing and distribution of Ascot races for live streaming to UK betting operators.
Matthew Imi, Chief Executive, At The Races, added: “Sky Sports Racing has been a real success in just a year and a half and our partnership with Ascot Racecourse has been an important factor.
“We have helped Ascot grow some of its key media rights revenues in a short time and we will continue to use our pay TV and digital platform as well as the support of Sky Sports and Sky Sports News to drive profile and exposure for all Ascot events.”