Business Irish

Saturday 18 November 2017

Revealed: How much the Irish spent at Cheltenham Festival

Ian Renton of the Jockey Club, with last year’s Gold Cup winner Don Cossack, one of 15 Irish winners at the Cheltenham Festival. Photo: PA
Ian Renton of the Jockey Club, with last year’s Gold Cup winner Don Cossack, one of 15 Irish winners at the Cheltenham Festival. Photo: PA

Sean Duffy

Irish people spent more than €22m at the Cheltenham Festival last year and accounted for 30pc of total punters at the event.

A study by the University of Gloucestershire on behalf of Cheltenham Racecourse has found an average of 14,343 visitors from Ireland attended each day of the four-day festival in 2016.

There were a total of 15 Irish winners at the event.

Punters spent most on entertainment (€5.2m), followed by food and drink (€4.5m) and accommodation (€4.1m).

The average spend per customer on entertainment was €556, with €508 going on tour packages, €419 on accommodation and €374 on food and drink.

The analysis was compiled from 810 completed questionnaires and supplemented by data from the racecourse, which showed that there were ticket sales to 12,750 individuals based in Ireland, who purchased an average of 4.5 tickets each.

Overall, Irish attendance at the event has risen by 22pc since 2010.

"The results demonstrate the very significant ongoing role played by Irish fans to the success of the festival," said Ian Renton, The Jockey Club's south-west regional director.

"Irish fans make up close to one-third of our attendance over the week, helping to create a truly unique atmosphere and experience for all racegoers," Mr Renton added.

"We look forward greatly to hosting our Irish racegoers once again in a few weeks' time for the 2017 renewal."

This year's Cheltenham Festival opens at the Gloucestershire racecourse on March 14.

Irish Independent

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