Horse Racing Ireland is reaching out to secure its appeal among a new generation of fans with the creation of a new annual racing membership for 18 to 25-year-olds.
HRI Racing25 is open to all full-time students and anyone aged 18 to 25 and membership of what has the potential to become an important and vibrant community only costs €25.
Such an initiative was among the ideas put forward by Rob Hartnett of Sport for Business in a keynote feature interview with the Irish Field newspaper last weekend.
Membership allows members free entry to five key race days from a selection of 21 race days around the country during the year.
These include one day at the Leopardstown Christmas Festival which attracts a strong young and social audience each year.
Tapping into the database of those who will have booked for the year just passed could yield a strong long term commitment from those who enjoyed the experience of this year’s Festival that was blessed by good weather.
In addition, HRI Racing25 members will also have access to exclusive behind the scenes trips to racing yards, stud farms and meet and greet opportunities with racing stars.
The project is getting off to a flying start with the first trip of 2020 for HRI Racing25 members being a stable tour to trainer Joseph O’Brien’s yard in Owning, Kilkenny on Friday, January 24th.
Racecourses will be able to create special packages and offer tp provide great experiences at different times of the year and it has to be hoped that building out a collective of like-minded individuals and communicating with them through digital media in ways that will encourage a deeper relationship with the sport can only be a winner.
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Image credit: Oisin Keniry, Inpho.ie