THE total prize money pool for French racing next year has been increased by 12% to €278 million.

This represents a 7.8% increase on 2019’s figure, prior to disruptions caused by the pandemic.

France’s state-run betting monopoly Pari-Mutuel Urbain (PMU) contributed €740 million to France Galop coffers this year, below the €805 million initially budgeted. The drop in revenue has been attributed to curfews and lockdowns, associated with Covid-19.

The decrease has been described as “relatively moderate” considering the situation during the first five months of the year. During this period, 3,500 points of sale were closed across the country, resulting in PMU’s turnover decreasing by 15%.

Following the reopening of points of sale, and the introduction of a Covid pass in August, the organisation expects to make a profit of €6 million for the year.

This will be redistributed to owners, breeders, trainers and jockeys, along with the 9% of all prize money which was temporarily retained by France Galop since March 1st.

With reopening continuing, PMU’s contribution to flat and jumps racing is set to jump to €820 million in 2022, a €60 million advance on 2019. This is contingent upon no more interruptions to the racing schedule, PMU’s international expansion and the operator reducing costs by €40m.

Horse Racing Ireland is expected to announce it 2022 prize money plans within the next fortnight. This year’s prize money pool was in the region of €60 million.

British racing prize money is expected to be in the region of £150 million (€177 million) next year, having fallen as low as £94 million in 2020.