Horse racing is considered an elite sport, the richest people buy the best horses to race against each other for the highest prize money. Or at least, that is how the industry is percieved. While there is certainly an element of the elite in racing, truly anyone can own a racehorse these days, especially with the growing number of affordable racehorse syndicates. About 60% of racehorses in the UK are owned by multiple people.
Are Racehorse Syndicates Worth it?
In my opinion, yes! It really depends on what your are looking to get out of a racehorse syndicate and each syndicate will be able to offer different things. But on the whole, when you are part of a syndicate you can expect:
- regular updates on your horse(s) from the trainer
- visits to the trainers yard
- owners badges if your horse is racing
- a share of any prize money
If you have an interest in racing, I think racehorse syndicates are well worth it. It is an excuse to watch and go to the races. You get tours of racing yards and insights from professionals. These are things many people pay for by themselves. Having them included in your syndicate can actually work out cheaper than going on tours by themselves.
Can You Make Money From Racehorse Syndicates?
It is possible to make money from a racehorse syndicate, but you shouldn’t expect to. Keeping racehorses in training is expensive and for average quality races, the winning prize money maybe covers a month or two training costs. Most horses would need to win multiple times throughout the year just to break even. But that doesn’t make it impossible to make money from owning a share in a racehorse.
Another way you can potentially make money from racehorse syndicates is by buying and selling shares. An unproven horse is often cheaper than a multiple winner. You could potentially buy shares in an unraced horse and sell them for a profit after a few seasons if they have raced well. But again, there are no guarentees when it comes to horse racing. The unproven horse may well prove to be rubbish!
Can An Affordable Syndicate Have Good Horses?
There is a big misconception that syndicates in general, but specifically more affordable syndicates, don’t have good quality horses. But this simply isn’t true. Dream Alliance who has had a documentary (Dark Horse) and a film (Dream Horse) made about him is one of the most well known syndicate horses. Bred by a handful of people from a Welsh mining town, who paid just £10 a week for a share, went on to win the Welsh National. Just this year, Flooring Porter won at Cheltenham Festival for his Irish syndicate. He was bought for just £5000 after seeing an advert on Facebook.
Affordable Racehorse Syndicates With The Owners Group
I have shares in multiple horses through The Owners Group. I really like their set up. You only buy shares for a year at a time with no obligation to continue with the horse at the end of the year. If you decide not to renew your share, they pay you back the value of your share in the horse.
These syndicates are big, usually 1,500 – 4000 shares depending on the horse. Each person can have up to 30 shares per horse. These shares typically cost £30-£60 for the year and include all costs for the year plus buying your share of the horse. Each year when you renew, you only pay the yearly costs, having already purchased a share. I have renewed a horse for as little as £27 for the year!
Owners Group have also had some great success with their horses. Last year Stage Star won the Challow Hurdle and in 2019, Pentland Hills won the Triumph Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival. Before Stage Star’s Challow Hurdle win, his owners renewed for about £35 for the year with new shares being priced at around £50. After this win when he came up to renew, new shares cost £118. If you decided to sell you share then you would have made about £80 profit.
Because the syndicates are so big, not everyone can get owners badges or go to every yard visit. But I feel they handle this very well. Every owner can apply for owners badges or yard visits. The spaces are then balloted out at random. If you have multiple shares in one horse, you get multiple entries in each ballot. If you aren’t successful getting an owners badge, you can always still attend the races as normal, viewing your horse in the parade ring as a member of the public.
I love having shares in racehorses through the Owners Group. I currently have a nice mix of Flat and National Hunt horses as well as a couple of Broodmares. I don’t expect to make any money from it or even have lots of winners. I just love having my own horses to follow and I think attending the trainers yard at least once a year for a tour is well worth the affordable price of the share. You can see my current Owners Group horses here.
Last Updated on 27/04/2022