NTRA Summer Promotions Put Fans in the Stands & Lead To Increases

In recent weeks, the NTRA has launched two major consumer promotions to raise awareness of horse racing and put fans in the stands at member racetracks. Both serve as examples of how the NTRA and its member racetracks work cooperatively on promotions to minimize costs, enhance fan participation and create national programs that benefit local markets.

The first, the NTRA $1 Million Mystery Mutuel Voucher produced overall increases of 17.27% in attendance and 10.82% in wagering. Vouchers, worth from $2 to $1 million, were distributed in local markets using mailing lists supplied by participating racetracks and additional "modeled" names of consumers whose demographics close resemble those of racing fans. More than 1.23 million vouchers, worth a total of $4.3 million, were mailed nationwide.

Attendance was up 186% at Mountaineer Park, 163% at Canterbury Park and 95% at the Maryland Jockey Club, to name a few. Handle was up 88% at Arlington Park, 60% at Calder and 46% at the Maryland Jockey Club.

The NTRA's second summer promotion, which runs through August, is the Ultimate Female Fan contest. Launched to coincide with the publication of a new book, The Female Fan Guide to Thoroughbred Racing, the contest challenges women to tell why they're the ultimate fan of Thoroughbred racing. The winner will receive a trip to the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships in October.

NTRA, TVG and Daily Racing Form are jointly promoting both the book and contest in cooperation with NTRA member tracks. The contest enables the NTRA and member tracks to identify and market to a niche audience-female fans who follow Thoroughbred racing. The Female Fan Guide is a basic educational tool that complements the NTRA's other marketing initiatives, including a monthly e-newsletter and Internet-based contests designed to educate fans about Thoroughbred racing and the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships.

If you have a question you'd like answered, e-mail it to Ben Haggin, the NTRA's vice president of industry relations, at bhaggin@ntra.com or call (800) 792-6872.

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