Horseracing broke new ground at Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club on Saturday, when the £160,000 Ayr Gold Cup was shown at half-time during the Club’s Sky Bet Championship clash with Blackpool – a trial which was hailed a resounding success.
In conjunction with the Football League’s title sponsor, Sky Bet, Scotland’s most famous Flat race was broadcast by Racing UK (Sky 432, Virgin Media 536, UPC 411 and Freeview 231) on the concourse screens and two big screens at the American Express Community Stadium.
It was the first time horseracing had been shown live at half-time at a Football League match.
Clive Cottrell, Marketing Director at Racing UK, said:
“Supporters enjoyed a pint and a pie while gathered around the screens on the concourses, and the racing also looked fantastic as a spectacle on the big screen. The hope is that other clubs will sit up and take notice and this half-time entertainment will be rolled out across other stadiums.”
The 25,000 crowd could bet on the race through Sky Bet via Sky’s free WiFi service, The Cloud, which reported a fivefold increase on its average click-through rate, via the WiFi landing page advert. The bookmaker offered all account holders a promotional code advertised on the day to avail a free £5 bet.
David Tweed, from Sky Bet, added:
“We had hundreds of Brighton & Hove Albion fans taking up our free bet offer, and many others watching the action unfold – so together with our partners we’ve definitely added something extra to the match-day experience. We’re already looking forward to building on this offering.”
Roger Matthews, Commercial Director at The Cloud, added:
“Our vision when we built the WiFi network for BHAFC was to enable fans to be connected throughout the stadium and this is a great example of how a good WiFi service can increase fan engagement and entertainment within the grounds.”
Tom Gorringe, Head of Marketing at Brighton & Hove Albion, said:
“The fans seemed to enjoy the race and we’ve had some excellent feedback. We look forward to working further with Racing UK, Sky Bet and The Cloud in promoting this half-time innovation.”
The next half-time horse race at BHAFC will be confirmed shortly.