Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) is the national authority for thoroughbred racing in Ireland, with responsibility for the governance, development and promotion of the industry under the Horse and Greyhound Racing Act 2001.
HRI represents Ireland on international racing bodies including the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities, the European and Mediterranean Federation of Horseracing Authorities and the European Pattern Committee.
The activities carried out by HRI under its remit to govern, develop, promote and administer the sport cover a wide range of areas, the principal ones being:
The operation of a Racing Department, which sets out the annual programme of races and agrees the fixtures and prize-money for each of Ireland's 26 racecourses. This department receives the declarations and entries for every race and provides the data for all racecards in Ireland. It also publishes the Racing Calendar and Form Book. Through its Registry Office function it looks after all matters relating to horse ownership and naming and it also maintains the record of horses in training.
There is also a substantial involvement in direct services to racecourses through the supply of starting stalls and handlers, photo finish and patrol cameras (for use by the Stewards of the meeting as part of their integrity function). HRI negotiates media rights for racecourses and manages the contract for the production of sound and pictures from the track for use by broadcasters. Racecourse development is supported by grant aid and loans for capital projects and substantial direct advice and planning assistance are also provided.
HRI also controls the operation of authorised bookmakers at race meetings through its Betting Division.
The Marketing and Communications Department promotes racing to the public through integrated national marketing campaigns. It provides a dedicated marketing support service for individual racecourses throughout the country providing marketing plan development, market research, media planning, sponsorship support and event management services. It manages and promotes the HRI web and social media sites and also operates the HRI Press Office, servicing the needs of the HRI Board and executives, the public, media and Government departments.
HRI has three subsidiaries which carry out distinct business functions:
The Racecourse Division which owns and operates Fairyhouse, Leopardstown, Navan and Tipperary Racecourses.
Tote Ireland Limited which operates a totalisator betting service at all Irish racecourses including an account betting service and a betting web site (www.thetote.com). Profits made by Tote Ireland are returned to racing.
Irish Thoroughbred Marketing which is responsible for the promotion of the Irish thoroughbred horse internationally. It is funded by both HRI and the Irish bloodstock industry.