IRISH Racing Integrity Services (IRIS) will continue to provide television pictures at Irish racecourses having been awarded a new four-year contract by Horse Racing Ireland and the Association of Irish Racecourses.
Based in Bartlemy, Co Cork, IRIS was established in 2005 as a joint-venture by the Arnold and O’Doherty families, who up to then had independently produced close circuit pictures at all tracks.
The new contract will run for an initial four-year period with an option to extend on an annual basis up to a maximum of 10 years following the completion of an EU tender process.
The contract is one of HRI’s largest supplier contracts and covers a number of roles on each of Ireland’s 26 racecourses, including supplying raceday integrity services to the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (IHRB), racecourse CCTV and providing race coverage to Sports Information Services (SIS) and Racing TV, as well as working alongside terrestrial broadcasters.
Some new initiatives will see the provision for raceday tracking cameras and the use of drone cameras.
Brian Kavanagh, chief executive of Horse Racing Ireland, said: “This new contract will see the introduction of a number of innovations to enhance the integrity and broadcast services across Irish racing. We look forward to working with the team at IRIS to deliver these over the coming months and years.
“There has been a favourable reaction to the trials of the tracking cameras at a number of racecourses and we expect the drone coverage will add another exciting dimension to the viewer experience. We thank the IHRB for their valuable input in the process. The delivery of new facilities within the stewards’ room and additional cameras at our racecourses will assist the IHRB to deliver a best in class integrity service.”
Paddy Walsh, chief executive of the Association of Irish Racecourses, said: “We look forward to continuing to work with the team at IRIS in continuing to deliver a top-class service across all Irish racecourses. The introduction of some new technologies and additional cameras will further enhance this service. IRIS is a valuable partner to the racecourses in providing content to our media rights partners and engaging our customers on course.”
IRIS managing director Bart Arnold commented: “We are delighted to have the opportunity of continuing to support HRI and AIR in the provision of televised services to Irish horse racing. There are several new technologies being introduced which will create innovative ways of viewing, entertaining and informing racing fans around the world.
“The new arrangements will see the introduction of best-in-class facilities for the raceday stewards, enhancing the integrity of Irish horse racing into the future. A superb team of people are in the background, delivering a quality service with professionalism, commitment and enthusiasm.”