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Sep 15 2014

On the back of a successful Ladbrokes St Leger Festival last week Arena Racing Company (“ARC”) is pleased to announce the 2015 All-Weather Championships £1 million Finals Day will be shown live on Channel 4.

Next year’s All-Weather Championships Finals Day will be held on Friday 3 April with Good Friday falling two weeks earlier than in 2014, with Channel 4 dedicating a three-hour window for the sport. The All-Weather Championships proved a great success in their first year and with the additional publicity Channel 4 can bring to the Finals Day in 2015 we look forward to even more people enjoying the top class racing.

ARC will be publishing details of the All-Weather Championship categories for 2015 and other relevant details for owners, trainers and racegoers in the coming weeks ahead of this year’s competition commencing at Lingfield Park on Thursday 30 October 2014.

ARC and Channel 4 worked closely together over the course of the Ladbrokes St Leger Festival at Doncaster Racecourse which saw a total record attendance over the four days of 62,000 visitors to the Town Moor track. The world’s oldest classic peaked at 763,000 live on Channel 4 with a peak share of 8.9%. The two and a half hour afternoon racing slot averaged 517,000 viewers with a 6.4% share – up on 2013, with a 5% increase on volume and a 10% increase in share against the five-year average for the long-standing Saturday fixture.

The Ladbrokes St Leger provided Channel 4 with their 16th Saturday since the Crabbie’s Grand National in which Channel 4 Racing viewers have been higher when compared with the same period in 2013 (within a 21 week period).

Tony Kelly, ARC’s Managing Director, said: “ARC and Channel 4 enjoy working together to help showcase British Racing. The ARC team is absolutely delighted Channel 4 will be showing the All-Weather Championships £1 million Finals Day next year. After only their first year the All-Weather Championships are already making a positive impact on raising the profile and prestige of all-weather racing in Great Britain.

“We would particularly like to thank our sponsors who showed belief in the initiative from the outset. We are eager to get started on Year Two and look forward to both Channel 4 and At The Races continuing to do a fantastic job of showcasing racing across ARC’s racecourses as we seek to promote and grow British Racing in the years ahead.”

Andrew Perkins, Lingfield Park’s Managing Director, said: “The first year of the All-Weather Championships saw a crowd of nearly 9,000 pack out Lingfield Park. We enjoyed wonderful spring time weather this year which as we know in Great Britain cannot be depended upon but with top class racing and lots of other attractions for racegoers of all ages the team at Lingfield Park are already looking forward to a wonderful 2015 All-Weather Championships Finals Day.”

Jamie Aitchison, Channel 4’s Commissioning Editor for Sport, added: “After the success of last year’s launch, we are delighted to bring the 2015 All-Weather Championships Finals Day for the first time to terrestrial viewers. Our final 2015 broadcast schedule will be announced in due course.”

David Williams, Ladbrokes’ Head of Consumer PR, said: “We said at the outset that the All-Weather Championships Finals Day should be on terrestrial television and that we believe this will have a positive impact on betting turnover. As sponsors, we are really pleased ARC and Channel 4 have made this happen and we are looking forward to getting stuck into Year Two of the competition.”

Simon Clare, Coral’s PR Director, said: The first year of the All-Weather Championships was without doubt a resounding success and I am therefore not in the least surprised that Channel 4 have signed up to cover next years Good Friday All-Weather Championships Finals day. Coral became enthusiastic supporters of this exciting new initiative from the moment that we were first briefed about it last summer, and we are looking forward immensely to building on the incredible success of Year One.”