Race Nights are they legal?
A) Yes, a race night properly
run is actually a lottery, as defined in the Lotteries
and Amusement Act of 1976. The films are simply an entertaining
way of selecting a winning number at random, and the tote ‘betting’
tickets are just chances in a lottery where nobody knows
which number will win.
It is worth explaining that
our race nights are the type of event where films are picked
at random, none of the actual runners on the film are named,
and no ‘form’ (information about the runners)
is given until all the bets have been placed. The films
are then shown in their entirety after the betting has
Legally a race night should
not be the only form of entertainment, a mini quiz, food,
presentation event or social meeting run in conjunction
with any of these mean, the sole inducement of the night
is not just the racing. For example you could have a prize
giving evening plus race night (the prize giving being
part of the racenight) or have 2 seperate events in one
night such as a quiz night plus race night etc... If a
race night is held on your premises, you do not have to
register with the police, or obtain a license. You can
also hold a race event on a Sunday if you wish.
How does the race night work?
A) A race night usually
consists of 6 to 9 races each with either horses, dogs
or pigs. The first 5,6,7 or 8 races are ‘normal races’ where
you would be expected to sell each of the horses in each
race to an owner prior to the race night. The owner names
the horse and would get a prize if their horse wins the
race. The last race is an auction race where each horse
is sold to the highest bidder on the night, with a large
prize, usually half the total money bid is given to the
winning owner of this race.
normal running order for a night would be:
race has the same format:
For the auction race the
horses are sold to owners who bid the most for each horse.
This is a great way to end the night.
The betting is opened and
tickets are sold for each horse. When everyone has had
a chance to buy tickets for the horse(s) of their choice
the betting is closed. A member of the audience is then
invited to select a race from a selection of unmarked security
The race is played.
The winning ticket holders
collect their money.
The winning owner is presented
with their prize.
The next race is then set-up
and the above is repeated.
How much should I charge my race sponsors?
A) As much as you can! Although
you may wish to get prizes from each of your sponsors or
charging sponsors £10 to £20 per race and buying
prizes from the fund may raise extra funds. One option
is to get companies to sponsor a race. That way not only
do they help raise money for charity BUT on the night they
get publicity - when it's their race E.G the host would
announce race 1 is the jameshuk.com Race. Please place
your bets now. This could be a different company / individual
How much should I sell my horses for?
A) This depends on how much
you think your customers can afford. The simple answer
is: as much as you can! As a rough guide previous organisers
average between £1 and £5 per horse although
if you can arrange some great prizes you may be able to
How much will the tote tickets be on the night?
A) Once again this can depend
on how much you think the audience can afford. The average
race night will charge 50 pence to £1 per tote ticket
for races. This is purely a guide as you are free to determine
your own prices - but remember the higher the tote ticket
price the more money is made for not only the winner(s)
but for charity too.
What will I have to organise for the race night?
A) Apart from all of the
usual things that need to be organised for any function.
Specific things have to done prior to your race night.
You need to sell as many
of the horses in each race and ensure that the owners give
a suitable name to their horses (paper work to be provided
by me on confirmation of race night.
You will need to organise
a prize for each race for the winning owner. This may be
achieved by getting sponsors for each race.
You may also wish to make multiple copies of the programme
with the owners and horse names.
What will I have to do on the night?
A) The main job for the
organisers on the night of the race night will be to help
the race night host - handle all of the financial arrangements.
A float of around
£60 to £80 in change is recommended which is
returned at the end of the night.
How many ticket sellers are used?
A) This depends on the size
of the crowd. For a small to medium crowd, two ticket sellers
(host and organiser) each selling tickets for horses will
be enough. For larger crowds it may be necessary to arrange
for more people to act as ticket sellers. This will all
be aranged before the event.
How are the prices (odds) for the horses worked out?
A) At the start of the race
night a percentage payout is agreed (usually between 25
- 50%). The total money collected for each race is totalled
and the payout percentage of the total is split between
each ticket sold for each horse. On the night, the presenter
will calculate the prices and the presenters word is FINAL!
So to put it simply:
If horse 1 sells 20 tickets
at 50p each = £10.00
The total sold by the
other horses = £40.00
Total money in for race
Money for fund raising
at 50% £25.00
Total Prize fund for race £25.00
If horse 1 wins the race
each ticket worth
by 20 tickets sold) = £1.25 per ticket