Record St Leger festival fails to stave off loss for Arena Racing

Michael Bow
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Arena Racing’s St Leger festival at Doncaster made £1.9m from the four-day annual event
THE UK’s biggest racecourse owner Arena Racing galloped to a loss last year despite a record-breaking St Leger festival.

The horse-racing giant, which was created through a merger of Arena Leisure and Northern Racing this year, reported losses of £5.7m for the year ending December 2013.

However, the group said its St Leger festival, held at Doncaster racecourse, made a record £1.9m raceday profit.

“The directors are happy with the results and look forward to the future with confidence,” the group said in its accounts.

“Despite challenges presented by the weather and the economy, attendance numbers grew year on year to 691,164 from 546,478 in 2012.”

Arena, which was formerly chaired by former Conservative party leader Michael Howard, owns several racecourses, including ones at Wolverhampton and Windsor.