Here is a useful checklist to go through with the manager
before you start.
Flat or Jumps?
You should consider if you want to be involved in a horse that runs on the Flat, over Jumps aka National Hunt (where horses have to jump over fences or hurdles) or both. The core period of the British Flat season starts in April and runs through to the end of October, although there is Flat racing on All Weather surfaces throughout the year. The core Jumps season runs from October to April, but again there is National Hunt racing throughout the year.
Shared ownership entities may specialise in either Jump or Flat horses, or both. Therefore, ask the manager which code their horses run under.
Clarify what is included in the price of joining the shared ownership entity
What is included as part of the syndicate or racing club membership will vary for each entity so it is important to ask the manager to detail what is included within the cost before joining.
Should I expect additional costs on top of my initial outlay?
Some shared ownership entities offer an all-inclusive one-off payment, which includes the purchase price of your percentage of the racehorse as well as the training, veterinary and racing fees. Others will charge an initial cost to buy a percentage and will then ask for additional funds for the horse’s training and racing expenses. Ask the manager to clarify their pricing structure and explain if additional expenses should be expected and whether they are fixed or variable. Here is a helpful link to a full guide on syndicate agreements.
How long am I committed for and what will happen at the end of the agreement? Am I able to leave the agreement early?
This is likely to vary from organisation to organisation. Ask the manager how long you are committed for and should you wish to leave early, what are the means of terminating the contract.
Before agreeing to purchase a membership to any ownership entity, we advise there is a written contract agreed between the organisation and yourself. This should be provided by the manager. If you would like more details on what should be included within a contract, the Racehorse Owners Association (ROA) provides a template contract for shared ownership entities and can be viewed by clicking here
When will the horse run?
The trainer will always do what is best for the horse in terms of how often and in what type of races it will run in. The manager will communicate any plans for when the horse is expected to run.
What happens when the horse runs? i.e. how many owner’s badges will I receive, where do I collect them from and where can I meet other members?
The manager will usually allocate the badges and tickets and arrange for them to be collected on arrival at the Owner’s & Trainer’s entrance at the racecourse. They will usually also arrange where and what time to meet the other members.
How often will I receive updates on the horse’s progress and future racing plans? When can I visit the horse at the trainer’s yard?
Again this will vary. Most organisations will keep their members updated regularly on the progress of the horse as well as any plans for future races. Many operations will also arrange trips to the yard to see the horse and meet the trainer, but it is best to consult the manager on how frequent both updates and visits will be.