The best thoroughbred racehorses do not come cheap – and owners often spend eye-watering sums at the sales.
But for a select group, a six-figure amount pales into comparison to their overall wealth. Those who go in search of finding the next hot prospect feature in the latest publication of the Sunday Times Rich List. The brothers behind one of the UK’s leading racecourse groups, plus two heads of bookmaking firms are among those who have amassed a huge fortune.
Here we take a look at five of the entrants and their current interests in the sport.
David and Simon Reuben and family £22.265bn (3rd)
The billionaire brothers own 16 racecourses and four greyhound tracks under the name of Arena Racing Company. In the last year alone, their net worth has increased by £800 million.
Dave Benett/Getty Images)
Despite this they have fallen from second to third in the list, overtaken by vacuum firm giant James Dyson and family (£23bn). The Reubens, born in India, started out in business. David began in scrap metal while Simon’s first foray was in carpets.
He made enough money to invest in property. Arena Racing, which runs courses including Doncaster and Wolverhampton, was created in 2012 by the merger of Arena Leisure and Northern Racing. With Saudi investors and Amanda Staveley, they also have a ten per cent stake in Newcastle United.
Kirsten and John Rausing £12bn (9th)
2013 Max Mumby/Indigo)
Successful owner-breeder Kirsten Rausing is ninth on the list with her brother Jorn. The Jockey Club member and her sibling have inherited a third each of Switzerland-based packaging group Tetra Laval.
Dr Rausing’s charitable Alborada Trust is named after her dual Champion Stakes winner, the world champion three-year-old of 1998. At the age of 15, The Mirror previously reported how she began life in business and racehorse breeding.
Kirsten was pivotal in the success of a stud farm in Sweden and she later set one up in Ireland before she settled in Newmarket back in 1980. Earlier this year, Dr Rausing, 69, covered the fee of the state-of-the-art CT scanner at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.
Alpinista is one her best horses as she landed a Group 1 hat-trick in 2021, the highest level of the sport.
Denise, John and Peter Coates £8.637bn (17th)
Although she has taken a £170 million pay cut, Denise Coates is thought to have a higher salary than anyone else in the UK since last year’s Rich List. The 54-year-old founder of bookmakers Bet365 had a £249.6 million salary in 2020-21. And although it was a tricky time during Covid-19 for sport and fixtures, the Stoke firm grew revenues when lockdown concluded.
Bet365, launched in 2001 as an online betting site, is worth in the region of £7.1 billion. The Denise Coates Foundation, a registered charity, has helped fund Oxfam and the Douglas Macmillan Hospice for cancer sufferers in Stoke.
Lord Bamford and family £4.32bn (42nd)
Luke Walker/Getty Images for Starlight Children’s Foundation)
Lord Bamford is known for his position at JCB, one of Britain’s most successful family-owned firms. Chairman since 1975, he has been at the help during its extensive global expansion.
The 76-year-old Tory peer sponsors key Cheltenham Festival race the JCB Triumph Hurdle and other trial contests throughout the National Hunt season. Lady Bamford started Daylesford Stud in 2000 with three broodmares and her Group race performers have included Sariska and Tropbeau.
Horses racing in her silks won 15 times in 2016, her best tally to date, scooping over £600,000.
The Queen £370m
The reigning monarch will be without a runner in this year’s Epsom Derby, which she is expected to attend. Racing’s flagship Classic is a big part of her Platinum Jubilee celebrations next month. Although her thoroughbreds have not trialled successfully for the big race, The Queen should have runners on the card.
In 2021, she celebrated her most successful year on the Flat ever, with 36 winners. The records, which stretch back to the 1980s, show her runners banked just over £580,000 in prize money. Her previous best score came in 2019 with 29 triumphs overall and she has seven on the board for 2022. Reach For The Moon, who was The Queen’s intended Derby horse before a training setback, is being aimed at Royal Ascot later in June.
He finished a promising second on his reappearance run for the campaign at Sandown.