New Rules Could End Horse Racing, Warns Gambling Giant

      Gambling Rules

      A leading industry figure has warned that proposed regulations for gambling in the Republic should not include a ban on horse racing. The Government’s Gambling Regulation Bill proposes banning betting adverts before 9 p.m. 

      This is raising concerns about its impact on the sport’s TV coverage. Such coverage is crucial for racetrack revenues and horse ownership. Barry Gibson is the chairman of Ladbrokes bookmaker’s owner Entain. 

      He stressed the importance of considering horse racing. It plays a vital role, especially in less urbanized regions. 

      He suggests the new gambling regulator should not enforce a blanket ban. Instead, they should work with stakeholders like 20Bet to tailor ad controls. 

      This approach would preserve horse racing’s benefits. It would do so by avoiding rules that are too restrictive. Those rules could harm the sport’s local economic and cultural value.

      Safeguarding Children

      Gambling Rules

      Opponents say the new rules should not include racing channels like those in Britain and Australia.

      Subscribers to the Racing TV channel must be over 18. The company says this follows the law, which aims to protect children from gambling marketing.

      Mr Gibson argued that creating a new regulatory system required much work. You can’t predict everything.

      He said Anne Caulfield should consult with the industry and ensure the new system works.”

      He added that this would help develop the industry and protect gamblers. “The regulator should help promote a healthy betting and gaming industry. It should also protect its customers,” said Mr Gibson.

      He added that the bill is not aimed at stopping gambling. The presentation presents the odds as legitimate, fair facts. The law would not see them as advertising.”

      The department noted that the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Justice recommended the ban.

      Ladbrokes, owned by Entain, is a major player in Ireland. According to Mr. Gibson, the company supports the proposed Gambling Regulation Bill. 

      Mr Gibson stressed that the group supported the Gambling Regulation Bill. They supported its aims.

      Piloting Legislation

      Gambling Rules

      The Oireachtas published the second draft of the bill in July. Minister of State James Browne, who works at the Department of Justice, is promoting the legislation.

      The Economic and Social Research Institute published the research this week. It showed that problem gambling affects one in 30 adults in Ireland, ten times the rate measured in 2019.

      The team set up the study. They were creating the new Gambling Regulatory Authority of Ireland and the department.

      Mr Gibson made his comments. Stockbroker-turned-racehorse trainer Barry Connell warned of an “Armageddon” for the sport. He said an ad ban could force it off TV. He pushed for laws to help channels like Racing TV and Sky Sports Racing, noting they’re for racing fans.

      Mr Connell is known to Irish business people from his previous career. He trained Marine Nationale. It won the Supreme Novice’s Hurdle at this year’s Cheltenham Festival. He argued there was a difference between “games of skill” and “pure chance,” such as the National Lottery.

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