In these very difficult times, I have looked into trying to watch racing on-line from the UK and countries all around the world and found it a total minefield. The are plenty of websites that offer free streaming but they are anything but when you look into them.
I found several American sites namely TVG, Bet AMERICA and Twin Spires but when I tried to log in I found they would not take a UK e-mail and it looked like there was a cost despite that not being mentioned in their initial search.
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So I have looked around the net to find anywhere to watch horse racing for free or cheaply to see where your money has gone after you’ve placed your bet and I have highlighted my findings below. Well you’ve put placed your money on your fancy and you want to watch it run, how can you watch the action?
I’m afraid there is very little in this life that comes free and apart from sitting on the town walls at Chester and watching the horses galloping round the Roodee, which costs nothing, here is what I have been able to find out about how you can watch racing on TV or your mobile device.
To Watch For Free On Terrestrial Television
Currently, ITV Racing has the contract to show racing in the UK.
Main events such as the Classics, Royal Ascot, Goodwood, Grand National and Cheltenham are usually shown on the main channel, ITV1, while the more ordinary meetings are on ITV4.
When the top events are on ITV1 they tend to concentrate on just the one meeting so there is a lot of dross between races such as a fashion slot, food slot or interviews with ‘celebrities’ who know less than nothing about racing.
Added to that some of the programme’s presenters can be a matter of taste and leave a lot to be desired, but there we are, you are getting your racing and a Saturday morning show for nothing.
Their contract expires at the end of the year so that may not be the case in future if ITV cannot secure a new deal.
Talks with the TV company and Racecourse Media Group stalled last month and it is reported the future of terrestrial racing coverage hangs in the balance.
It is possible ITV could lose all but a few ‘flagship’ race days and the rest could go to Sky or Racing TV and that would be a disaster for the Saturday punter.
Paid Subscription Services
That brings me to the Subscription Services which are currently Sky Sports Racing and Racing TV, Sky replaces At The Races and promises racing from Ascot, Chester and Bangor-on-Dee and have recently signed a 10 year deal with those courses.
They also have 22 other courses on their books plus they claim to have 200 French fixtures, the Breeders Cup, US Triple Crown, the Melbourne Cup and all the fixtures from the Hong Kong Jockey Club. The channel is available to all basic satellite and cable subscription customers.
Racing TV has changed their name from Racing UK due to their Irish deal and currently covers 35 courses in the UK and all the Irish Racing, their current tariff is £25 a month, they also have a daily rate of £5.
Most of the bookmakers offer streaming provided you have placed a bet at over a certain amount, some are free,these streams are taken directly from the racecourses and the quality of the picture and the commentaries differ enormously. Here is what some of the betting firms offer.
This firm offer free streaming from North America and Australia as well as their virtual racing. The races that they offer streaming on is clearly marked at the side of each race with a tick box.
Racing from the USA is covered as is virtual racing and although they offer racing from Australia, Hong Kong and Northern Europe it is difficult to see if they offer live streaming. Virtual racing is streamed.
They offer free streaming on US racing and virtual racing but although they offer betting on Australian and Asian racing I could not find any mention of streaming.
All racing from the USA is streamed for free. They offer racing from Hong Kong and Australia it there is no mention on their website of streaming from these countries.
They offer live streaming from the USA and Hong Kong provided you have a bet of £1 or more on each race you want to stream.
This company offer themselves as a dedicated horse racing bookmaker. They offer free streaming from France, USA and Hong Kong.
Find all previous Seymour Biz racing editorials in his weekly column: Saturday Horse Racing Tips