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Thursday, June 8, 2006


At The Races, the UK and Ireland's most watched dedicated racing channel, is delighted to announce that last night it was named "Best Specialist Channel" at this year's Broadcast Digital Channel Awards.

Broadcast is the pre-eminent weekly trade publication for the UK television and radio industry. At The Races was a winner amongst a growing and highly competitive sector of specialist channels, with the judges noting that "At The Races targets its audience with exactly what it wants to see." The Channel was also praised for its financial success, 'fresh' content and its ability to make horse-racing accessible to viewers.

Chief Executive, Matthew Imi, collected the award on behalf of the Channel at a ceremony hosted at London's Grosvenor House Hotel. Other nominated channels in this year's Awards included BBC3, ITV2 and MTV. In the Best Specialist Channel category, At The Races beat other shortlisted entries, Sky Vegas and Teachers' TV.

The Specialist Channel award recognises innovative and creative programming, proximity to audience, financial performance and a channel's impact within its sector and industry. In ATR's case this was demonstrated by strong audience figures, over 1.2 million different individuals (BARB) tune into the channel every month, a raft of pioneering programming formats including the Get On show and a multi-platform, audience focused approach to content delivery.

Financial outperformance was highlighted by a 241% year on year increase in advertising and sponsorship revenues and a total of more than £4.5 million being generated for the channel's racecourse partners since launch.

Other winners at the awards included Sky News, More4, BBC4 and Paramount Comedy.

Matthew Imi, Chief Executive, At The Races said:

"I am thrilled for everyone at ATR that we have won this award. We have a talented and hard working team, both in front of and behind the cameras, which is committed to producing entertaining, interactive, punter friendly coverage of British and Irish horseracing. This award is recognition of their ability to create a product which engages the audience in many ways not just across multiple domestic platforms but also in numerous territories worldwide.

"2006 is shaping up to be an even more successful year for ATR and in the very near future we'll be making some announcements regarding initiatives we'll be putting in place to further enhance the look and feel of the channel."


Arena Leisure is delighted to be staging the newly named Ladbrokes Summer Mile at Lingfield Park on Saturday, July 15, as the centrepiece of a valuable Ascot transfer fixture.

This feature race, known last year as the Ladbrokes Silver Trophy, was the first Group race to be run on an all-weather surface. This year it has been renamed and has slightly revised conditions to reflect the increased prize money, which has doubled to a total of £100,000.

Ian Renton, Racing Director at Arena Leisure said: "I am delighted that with the support of Ascot and Ladbrokes we have managed to give this race even more prestige and double the prize money to £100,000.

"It was most pleasing last year to successfully stage the first ever Group race on an all-weather surface and I am very much looking forward to seeing a sensational field line up for this contest."

Renton continued: "The race will return to Ascot next year and it is hoped that another quality field for this year's race will enable it to be upgraded to Group 2 status"

For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink Archive

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