Longines Tracking System Used at Royal Ascot

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Longines Tracking SystemLongines and Ascot Racecourse are proud to announce the official launch of the Swiss watch brand’s innovative Longines Tracking System, which was successfully inaugurated during the prestigious Royal Meeting, on Wednesday 20th of June.

Ascot Racecourse thus became the first racecourse to be equipped with the system. This game-changing timing and tracking system – a world premiere in the horse racing industry – provides instant data on the exact position of horses during a race, race rankings, the distance between horses as well as their acceleration and deceleration. In addition, it measures the horses’ covered and remaining distance in the race.

Entirely based on satellite data, the Longines Tracking System boasts extreme accuracy, without any permanent installation on the racecourse, as required by the currently existing tracking systems. Developed in collaboration with Swiss Timing, the system represents a technological break-through in the horseracing industry, as it enables the most prestigious racecourses across the globe – including those located in protected historical or natural sites – to have access to such advanced technologies.

Juan-Carlos Capelli, Vice President and Head of International Marketing of Longines said: “For Longines, investing in technological advancements is the latest step in its long-term relationship with horseracing. The Longines Tracking System delivers a number of benefits to the sport and is a game-changer for the racing industry. We believe that live performance data enhances viewing experience and depth of understanding of the sport.”

Juliet Slot, Chief Commercial Officer, Ascot Racecourse commented: “We are delighted to have installed the new Longines Tracking System, adding valuable information to our racegoers and racing shareholders even now in the early days of its implementation. Longines as our Official Partner and Timekeeper has been committed to showcasing their system at Ascot and we are delighted with the results.”

Longines’ passion for equestrian sports dates back more than 140 years. In 1878 already, it produced a chronograph engraved with a jockey and his mount. Seen on the racetracks as early as 1881 and extremely popular among jockeys and horse-lovers, this model enabled its user to time performances to the second. Longines’ involvement in equestrian sports includes show-jumping, flat racing, endurance, dressage, driving and eventing competitions. Longines chose to support equestrian sports as a perfect illustration of tradition, performance and elegance, which are the key values of the brand.

About Ascot

Ascot Racecourse was founded in 1711 by Queen Anne and is constituted under a statutory trust contained in the Ascot Authority Act 1913. Three trustees (the “Ascot Authority”) are appointed by the Monarch and are ultimately responsible for the stewardship of the trust. The statutory purpose of the trust is to act for the benefit of racing at Ascot. All returns are reinvested in the business for the benefit of Horsemen (Owners, Breeders, Trainers, Jockeys and Stable Staff), racegoers and off course followers, both in the UK and Internationally.

Underneath the Trust, a corporate structure runs the business which employs around 200 people full time (directly and through our food & beverage joint venture with Sodexo known as 1711 by Ascot) and up to 6000 casual raceday staff.

Ascot hosts around 600,000 racegoers a year across 26 racedays (flat and jumps), 300,000 of whom come to Royal Ascot – a pivotal event on the racing and fashion calendar and a semi-state occasion – which equates to roughly 10% of the total number of racegoers attending in the UK from about 1.5% of the fixtures.

Ascot stages nine of the country’s Group One (elite) flat races in the summer, and a further four on the industry owned QIPCO British Champions Day. The Royal Meeting is the most international race meeting in Europe, regularly attracting runners from Australia, the USA, Asia and from within Europe.

Ascot currently turns over around £90m per annum and generates around £20m in net cash, all of which is reinvested into the business (1) to repay debt following the 2004-2006 £220m redevelopment (now under £60m), (2) in infrastructure and venue experience (currently around £7m per annum), (3) in prize money and (4) in general business development.

Alongside racing, Ascot runs a £2m a year conference and events business and from July 2018 will run its own pool betting business, AscotBet, in conjunction with the Tote.

Ascot’s overall direct economic impact has been measured by Deloitte as being around £150m per annum (excluding the very substantial off course betting).

Ascot is broadcast live in over 175 territories worldwide; at home on ITV and overseas, including NBC. International reach is pivotal to Ascot’s future business development and as a shop window for international investment in British Racing’s £3bn per annum industry.

Ascot engages with its wider community in a range of ways. Around 250 charities benefit in some way from Ascot’s support each year. Ascot’s Property Raceday raises just under £200,000 per annum for children’s charities and from 2015 – 2017, Ascot raised £1.1m for The Prince’s Countryside Fund. Ascot partners with the Berkshire Community Foundation to directly benefit regional charities.

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About Editor

Rich Nilsen is a 15-time qualifier to the National Horseplayers Championship (NHC), an event he has cashed in four times. He was the first player to finish in the top 10 twice. He was also a winner of a $24,000 package into Kentucky Derby Betting Championship I. A former executive with Brisnet.com, Rich is also a graduate of the University of Louisville Equine Business Program. He is founder of AGameofSkill.com, a site devoted to horse racing education and promotion.

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