Efforts Spurred to Revive Local Horse Racing in Japan

Politics Society Culture

Tokyo, Nov. 30 (Jiji Press)--Efforts are moving forward to revive horse racing run by local governments in Japan, after years of declining popularity.

Sales have been recovering, due in part to online sales of betting tickets, although until now local racecourses have not been financially strong enough to splurge on major repairs on facilities.

But support to local racecourses was strengthened under the horse racing law revised this month, making it easier for them to improve facilities.

Sales at local racecourses in fiscal 2021, which ended in March, rose by some 10 pct from the previous year to 993.3 billion yen, hitting a record high for the first time in 30 years.

Local horse racing had been in the doldrums, with some local racecourses closing, since sales peaked in fiscal 1991, as the whole horse racing industry thrived on the success of Oguri Cap, a legendary racehorse that debuted at a local racecourse and later collected wins in major races run by the Japan Racing Association.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press