Prize money across France will be maintained in 2019 after France Galop unveiled their budget for next year, despite a decline in receipts from the PMU, Jour de Galop reported. France Galop President Edouard de Rothschild confirmed the news before the Committee of France Galop on Monday. France-Galop will draw on its monetary reserves and has also asked for an advance from the PMU which will keep purses at the same level in 2019. Also, in an effort to decrease operating expenses, racing at Maisons-Laffitte will cease at the end of 2019 as previously announced in November.
“As of Dec. 9, the bets on horses are down 2.6% compared to last year,” said de Rothschild during the proceedings. “That’s 220 million in less than 11 months and nearly 70 million products gross of bets, also in less. This is a continuation of the trend of the last eight years in which we lost around 1.8 billion in bets. Beginning in the second half of 2017, not accepting this reality, I started, along with my trotting colleagues, to search, then find and set up new management at the PMU. New management to revisit and revive the business.
He continued, “Cyril Linette unveiled the main outlines of his plan at the last Committee meeting. This plan has now become a concrete one, with a series of initiatives planned for the beginning of the year. Among them: the new Quinté +, the simplification of the range of bets. These objectives all have in common the goal of winning back the most faithful players, to give them the desire to play with a more readable product, and higher earnings expectations. Why should we believe in this plan more than all those that have been presented to you for years? By that the PMU’s turnover assumptions for the three years ahead are realistic. The management plans, for 2020 and 2021, [are] a level of stakes close to the figure of 2018. Thirty million in marketing, sales and IT expenses are budgeted to finance this stimulus in 2019. Half of the budget will be devoted to recruit new bettors.”