At The Races vs Racing UK: Do You Need Both as a Racing Trader?

General Horse Racing

If you plan on trading horse racing then it’s as simple as this: you need live TV pictures. If you don’t have pictures you will be at a serious disadvantage to everyone else in the Betfair markets. Having live pictures is an edge within itself.

At The Races vs Racing UK

At The Races and Racing UK are the two main horse racing broadcasters – so is it ok to just have access to one or do you need both?

The short answer is that you don’t really need to subscribe to either, but they do have their benefits. You can just use Betfair’s own live videos feed to stream but there are a few disadvantages to this.

Disadvantages of Using Betfair for Your Live Pictures

  • You must bet or put a trade on each race before you can access the pictures to that particular race – this is £5 minimum. I found this a bit of a nuisance as I’d often be concerned with getting £5 matched on both sides at no loss. Even if it was an 11p red it still had a psychological effect on me that I was already in the red before I’d even begun thinking about trading the race
  • Leading on from the point above: I felt I couldn’t properly assess how to trade the race before I got the pictures from Betfair on which meant I had no rhythm to my trading
  • For courses that Racing UK have the broadcast rights to you will see the race build-up from that TV channel. But for the races that At The Races have the rights to then you won’t have build up (however there is much less of a transmission delay than watching it on the actual ATR TV channel where there is anything between 10-30 seconds delay in coverage). Why is this important? Because the signal for potential moves in the market can be heard in the build up by the pundits – such as a pundit alerting you to the fact that a horse is keen to post/is playing up/is sweating
  • You rely on Betfair having no trouble with their feed. It’s happened a couple of times where they’ve had issues – which is rather unsurprising

One reason why you need access to both channels is because they have exclusive broadcast rights to certain racecourses. You can see the full lists by clicking on the accordions below.

Exclusive Racecourse Rights

UK Racecourses:

Bath, Brighton, Chelmsford, Chepstow, Doncaster, Fakenham, FFos Las, Fontwell, Hereford, Hexham, Leicester, Lingfield, Newcastle, Newton Abbot, Plumpton, Ripon, Sedgefield, Southwell, Stratford, Taunton, Towcester, Uttoxeter, Windsor, Wolverhampton, Worcester and Yarmouth.

Irish Racecourses:

Ballinrobe, Bellewstown, Clonmel, Cork, Curragh, Down Royal, Downpatrick, Dundalk, Fairyhouse, Galway, Gowran, Kilbeggan, Killarney, Laytown, Leopardstown, Limerick, Listowel, Naas, Navan, Punchestown, Roscommon, Sligo, Thurles, Tipperary, Tramore and Wexford.

(Information correct as of April 2017)

UK Racecourses:

Aintree, Ascot, Ayr, Bangor-On-Dee, Beverley, Carlisle, Cartmel, Catterick Bridge, Cheltenham, Chester, Epsom Downs, Exeter, Goodwood, Hamilton Park, Haydock Park, Huntingdon, Kelso, Kempton Park, Ludlow, Market Rasen, Musselburgh, Newbury, Newmarket, Nottingham, Pontefract, Perth, Redcar, Salisbury, Sandown Park, Thirsk, Warwick, Wetherby, Wincanton and York.

No Irish racecourses.

(Information correct as of April 2017)

ATR vs RUK: Positives and Negatives

At The Races

Racing UK

Positives

  • £9.99 monthly cost for online subscriptions which can be cancelled at any time. Other options are available via cable and satellite TV – I’m pretty sure it’s free with Sky
  • Horse Racing Tracker – Make a note about a horse and get email notifications when it next runs
  • Little delay in pictures – between 2-5 seconds usually
  • Broadcasts most of the higher quality racecourses and events
  • No adverts
  • In-depth racing analysis
  • All profits go back into the racecourses and Horse Racing itself, plus you get free access days to attend over 30 race days per year

Negatives

  • Major issues with delays. Can be anywhere between 10-30 seconds which is a serious inconvenience for traders. You’re almost just better off using the Betfair live feed for these races
  • So many adverts that it’s known as ‘At The Adverts’ by professional traders. You know those PPI adverts? Yeh, well you better get used to hearing them about 872 times a day
  • Matt Chapman. Like Marmite, you either love him or hate him. I’m the latter, unfortunately
  • Costs £24.99 with a minimum 12-month subscription if subscribing online. Other options are available via cable and satellite TV
  • No broadcast rights to any Irish courses

Top Tip: Racing UK sometimes do a special sign-up offer such as £10 per month for your first year. They had this on during Black Friday in 2016, if my memory serves me correctly. And I think they also ran an offer like this, or something similar in the lead up to Cheltenham 2017.

Comparison Table

At The RacesRacing UK
Price (Online)£9.99 per month. Can be cancelled at any time£24.99 per month. Comes with a minimum 12-month contract
Delays10-30 seconds. Bad news for traders2-5 seconds maximum. Perfectly fine for trading
AdvertsLots of them. Lots for PPI. Lots for Stannah Stairlifts. You’ll know the word to each advert by the end of your first monthNone. Hooray!
Broadcasting RightsHas Irish racingHas most of the major racecourses and therefore broadcasts the major festivals
Other BenefitsATR Horse Tracker. Make a note and get emails when that horse next runsAll profits go back into racing. Free access to 30 race days throughout the year

My Recommendation

If you’re just starting out I would recommend just using the Betfair live feed. This is because of 2 reasons:

  • If you’re subscribing to Racing UK online you must take out a minimum 12-month contract at £24.99 per month.
  • At The Races is so delayed it’s practically useless

However, if you’re serious about tackling pre-race horse racing then Racing UK is the nailed on one to subscribe to, but I can take or leave At The Adverts…. I mean At The Races.

However, it is best to Betfair’s live feed ready to load up in all circumstances – this is particularly easy to do through Geeks Toy which has a module where you can pull up the Betfair video.

Related Content

Betfair Trading Software

Betfair Trading Software

Matched Bettor of 3+ years. Loves helping others find their path to what they really want to do in life. Started my Sports and Cryptocurrency Trading journey in June 2016. Bitcoiner.
  • Lewis says:

    Thanks for that. I’ve been learning horse scalping for 12 months and still consider myself a beginner. The bit about avoiding losses is paramount and the one I’m still working on, particularly when a sudden ‘spike’ breaks through my trades. Regards.

  • Lost Password

    >