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Last Updated: Monday, 3 March, 2003, 18:23 GMT
Racing's rulers

The Jockey Club

Sign outside the Jockey Club headquarters in London
The Jockey Club's famous London address
The Jockey Club, which was founded in 1750, is horse racing's ruling body.

The organisation's role is to ensure the Rules of Racing are enforced both at courses and at training establishments.

It investigates potential breaches of the rules and hands out punishments to offenders.

One of its principal concerns is the welfare of horses and riders and anyone who wants to be a jockey or trainer has to apply to the Jockey Club for a licence.

It is also responsible for racecourse officials, such as judges, starters and veterinary officers.

Its headquarters are at Portman Square in central London, which is where hearings and appeals are held.

The Jockey Club took a lot of flak in the wake of the BBC Panorama programme, which accused the organisation of failing to deal with alleged corruption within the sport.

It has since announced measures designed to boost public confidence in its integrity.

Ironically, the club was originally founded to bring some sort of order to a sport which was at that time rife with corruption and inconsistency.

The British Horseracing Board

The British Horseracing Board (BHB) was set up in 1993 and deals more with the day-to-day administration of racing.

While the Jockey Club enforces the rules, the BHB organises the fixture list and handles the promotion and marketing of the sport to potential owners, sponsors and racegoers.

BHB chairman Peter Savill
Peter Savill is the BHB chairman
Under present regulations, courses cannot hold meetings whenever they choose - it is up to BHB to decide - although a recent Office of Fair Trading investigation has indicated that this is uncompetitive and that this should change.

The board of the BHB is made up of chairman Peter Savill and 11 directors from different areas of racing, including the Jockey Club.

Two directors are representatives of the Racecourse Association (RCA), which represents the interests of Britain's 59 racecourses.

Its chairman Keith Brown has often been at loggerheads with Savill over the future of the regulation of racing.

Jockeys' Association

The Jockeys' Association represents the interests of both Flat and jump jockeys.

Its current chief executive is John Blake, who replaced Michael Caulfield in the summer of 2003.

He negotiates on behalf of jockeys as a whole on larger issues, such as the row over the restricted use of mobile phones in the weighing room.

But the role also includes providing support for individual jockeys who find themselves in need of help.

The Horserace Totalisator Board (Tote)

The Tote churns all its profits back into racing.

Bets placed with the Tote go into a pool, which is then divided out (less a deduction for running costs) between winning tickets after the race.

This means that when you place the bet, you will not know exactly what the return will be.

Sometimes it will bring a better dividend than betting with a conventional bookmaker, at other times not.

The Tote is also Britain's biggest commercial sponsor of racing.

Among big jump races it sponsors are the Gold Cup at Cheltenham and the Tote Gold Trophy at Newbury.


Weatherbys is employed by the BHB to handle the administration of racing.

The company looks after entries, colours and names.

Any trainer who wants to run a horse in any race must log that entry with Weatherbys.

Any owner who wants to register a set of colours or a name for a horse must also do that through the firm.

The handicap weights are also handled by Weatherbys.

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