Impressive RTE viewership for 150th Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby
July 1, 2015
1st July 2015
150th Irish Derby attracts close to 200,000 viewers
RTÉ2’s coverage of the 150th running of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby from the Curragh attracted an average audience of 113,400* viewers across the entire 2 ½ hour live broadcast peaking at 194,300** as Jack Hobbs raced to victory in the 150th Irish Derby itself to become the first British trained horse to win Ireland’s premier race since 1993.
Ryle Nugent, Group Head of Sport, RTÉ said “We are delighted that RTÉ2’s coverage of the 150th Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby drew such a large television audience to the blue riband event of the Irish flat racing season. It is particularly pleasing to see the engagement that Irish audiences continue to have with RTÉ’s coverage of Irish Racing.”
Evan Arkwright, Commercial Manager of the Curragh Racecourse commented: “We are delighted to see the viewership of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby increase so significantly and it shows that the 150th running of the race really caught the public’s imagination. The broadcast by RTE was excellent and the inclusion of so much historical Irish Derby content from their archive really enhanced the coverage”
This year’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby was one of the most successful for many years. Attendance increased by over 2000 people on Irish Derby Day, while hospitality sold out weeks in advance of the event. Pre sales of ticket showed a marked increase with sales from 18 individual countries including substantial increases of tickets purchased from UK, Australia, USA, Canada, Japan, Israel, Germany and Spain
An increase of almost 3,000 people over the whole weekend led racecourse manager Paul Hensey to deem the fixture “a huge success” and with sponsors Dubai Duty Free onboard with increased prize-money next year, Hensey is hoping to build it on this success.
“The attendance was up on the three-days including 25,255 here on Saturday for the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby and overall it was a very positive weekend,” Hensey said.
“Jack Hobbs was a very impressive winner of the Irish Derby, which of course was the 150th running of the race, and Diamondsandrubies was a worthy winner of one of the most competitive renewals of the Sea The Stars Pretty Polly Stakes that I can remember.
“It is the reward of a lot of hard work from a lot of people including the trainers, jockeys and owners who make it happen, the patrons and all the staff and sponsors. The feedback about the ground conditions were very favourable and there was a lot of kind comments about the racecourse in general so I couldn’t be more pleased.”
It was announced last week that Dubai Duty Free had agreed to continue their title sponsorship of the Irish Derby until 2017 with the option to extend to 2020. In addition, the 3 day Festival was fully sponsored with partners including DoneDeal, GAIN Horse Feeds, The Tsui family from Hong Kong, Tote, Paddy Power, Boodles and The Marker Hotel together with media partners Independent Newspapers, Communicorp and Image Magazine