how much money does horse racing make

The horse racing industry generates substantial revenue worldwide. In 2022, the global horse racing industry was valued at approximately $115 billion. A significant portion of this revenue comes from gambling, particularly through on-track betting and off-track betting facilities. Horse racing also generates revenue from admission fees, concessions, and sponsorship deals. Additionally, the industry creates jobs and supports businesses in various sectors, including hospitality, transportation, and veterinary services. However, the exact amount of money made by horse racing can vary depending on factors such as the number of races held, attendance, and gambling participation.

Horse Racing’s Financial Impact

Horse racing is a multi-billion dollar industry with a global reach. It generates revenue from various sources, including admissions, concessions, and most significantly, wagering.

Racing and Wagering Statistics

  • In the United States, thoroughbred and harness racing generate over $10 billion in revenue annually.
  • Worldwide, the horse racing industry is estimated to be worth over $150 billion.
  • Over $200 million is wagered on horse races each year.

Average Daily Wagering by U.S. State (2023)

StateAverage Daily Wagering
New York$9,500,000

The revenue generated from horse racing has a significant impact on local and national economies. It supports the creation and maintenance of jobs in the equine industry, as well as the hospitality and tourism sectors.

The Economic Impact of Horse Racing

Horse racing is not just a thrilling sport but also a major economic driver. The industry generates billions of dollars annually and supports numerous jobs.

Here are some key economic benefits of horse racing:

  • Tax revenue: Horse racing generates significant tax revenue for local, state, and federal governments.
  • Job creation: The industry employs hundreds of thousands of people in various fields, including trainers, breeders, jockeys, and support staff.
  • Infrastructure: Racetracks and training facilities contribute to local infrastructure, providing jobs and stimulating tourism.
  • Entertainment: Horse racing provides entertainment and recreation, attracting millions of fans annually and boosting local economies.

The economic impact of horse racing can be quantified through industry reports and economic impact studies.

For example, the Kentucky Racing Commission estimated that the horse racing industry in Kentucky alone generated:

YearEconomic Impact (Billions)

These figures demonstrate the significant economic value of horse racing and its impact on the local economy.

Revenue Streams in Horse Racing

Horse racing is a multi-billion dollar industry that generates revenue from various sources. Here are the primary revenue streams for horse racing:


  • Betting: The primary source of revenue for horse racing is wagering on races. Bettors can place bets on various factors, such as the winning horse, the order of finish, and the time of the race.
  • Off-track betting: Bettors can also wager on races at off-track betting facilities, such as casinos and racinos.
  • Advance deposit wagering: This allows bettors to place wagers online or via mobile devices.


  • Admission fees: Racecourses charge admission fees for spectators to attend races.
  • Food and beverage sales: Racecourses generate revenue from the sale of food and beverages to attendees.
  • Souvenir sales: Racecourses sell merchandise and souvenirs related to horse racing.

Other Revenue Streams

  • Sponsorship: Companies and organizations pay to sponsor races, jockeys, or horses.
  • Television rights: Racecourses and racing organizations sell television rights for races and related programming.
  • Horse sales: Some racecourses also conduct horse sales, generating revenue from the sale of racehorses.
    • Estimated Revenue Streams for Major Racetracks
      RacetrackRevenue StreamRevenue (USD)
      Churchill DownsWagering$1.1 billion
      Santa Anita ParkAttendance$250 million
      Del Mar RacetrackSponsorship$20 million

      Prize Purse Distribution

      The prize purse in horse racing is typically distributed based on the following criteria:

      1. Finishing Position

      • Horses that finish in the top three positions generally receive the largest share of the prize money.
      • The winning horse typically receives the highest percentage of the purse.

      2. Horse’s Earnings

      • Horses with higher career earnings may earn a larger share of the prize purse.
      • This is due to the fact that higher-earning horses have demonstrated their ability to perform well.

      3. Horse’s Ownership

      • Horses owned by stables with a strong reputation may receive a higher percentage of the purse.
      • This is because these stables have a proven track record of success.

      In addition to the above criteria, the prize purse distribution may also be influenced by the following factors:

      • The type of race (e.g., stakes race, handicap race, claiming race)
      • The number of horses entered in the race
      • The track’s purse structure

      The table below provides an example of how a prize purse might be distributed:

      Finishing PositionPercentage of Purse

      Hey there, folks! Thanks for taking the time to read about the fascinating world of horse racing’s financial side. It’s been a wild ride, and we hope you enjoyed the stats and insights we shared. If you’re itching for more equestrian excitement, be sure to swing by our blog again soon. We’ve got plenty more stories, trivia, and unbelievable behind-the-scenes scoops waiting for you. Take care, and catch you at the next race!