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BUFFERING – ROAD TO GREATNESS

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Friday Fill Up – November 14

The boys are back for another week of tipping to hopefully steer you into a winner or two this weekend.

  • Ben Asgari (@benasgariracing) from racing.com gives us his best bets for the big Sandown card on Saturday.
  • Tom Haylock (@thetrialfiles) from The Trial Files gives us the good oil for Rosehill Gardens. &
  • Chris Nelson (@qldtrials) from Best Bets & RSN lets us in on his thoughts for the Doomben.
  • As always hosted by the Gold Coast Bulletin’s Racing Chief Brad Davidson (@braddavo).

Tune in now & make this weekend on the punt a fill up!

Racing.com’s Foxtel launch on Channel 522 delayed

crownbet 200:400 #2

Racing.com’s coverage of Victorian thoroughbred racing won’t be broadcast on Foxtel in time for Saturday’s official launch of the new station.

Despite negotiations continuing on Friday, no resolution could be met.

“The Seven Network is continuing its discussions with Foxtel to be able to expand the Racing.com coverage to Channel 522 but no agreement has been reached at this time,” Racing Victoria said in a statement.

“Foxtel viewers can watch all Victorian races this weekend on Sky Racing 1 (Channel 519).

“The new Racing.com channel will be officially launched on free-to-air television tomorrow with the broadcast of the Memsie Stakes meeting from Caulfield available to over 90 per cent of the population.

“The coverage will also be streamed free of charge globally onto all digital devices via Racing.com.”

Racing Victoria advises it is unable to provide a timeline on when an agreement may be reached, but it remains its strong desire to get Racing.com onto Foxtel as well as being broadcast on free-to-air.

Racing.com begins officially broadcasting on Saturday – via the Seven Network and PRIME7 with coverage of Group 1 Memsie Stakes Day from Caulfield.

Racing.com will be broadcast through the metropolitan markets of Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, as well as through much of regional Queensland, on the Seven Network’s free-to-air Channel 78.

Regional free-to-air viewers in Victoria, New South Wales and Western Australia, along with the ACT and Gold Coast, can view Racing.com via the PRIME7 network on Channel 68.

Earlier on Friday, Racing Victoria announced that punters in Tasmania, Darwin, Broken Hill and regional South Australia will be able to watch Racing.com’s coverage of Victorian racing as of Monday, with Southern Cross Television agreeing to carry the free-to-air station.

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POST VIA: www.racing.com

Racing Victoria press release — Channel 78. How to watch Victorian racing wherever in Australia you are!

FAQs – The broadcast of Victorian thoroughbred racing, Channel 78 & racing.com
(as at 25/6/2015)

Where can I watch Victorian thoroughbred racing?
From Friday, 26 June 2015 until otherwise advised, Victorian racing can be viewed via the following:

  • Free-to-air TV = Channel 78 in Melb, Syd, Bris, Adel, Perth*
  • Pubs & Clubs = Metro/suburban pubs and clubs who tune into Channel 78**
  • TAB Agencies = 92 Victorian TAB retail agencies (those not in a pub or club)
  • Mobile Phones = Racing.com, sportsbet.com.au***, crownbet.com.au***
  • Tablets (iPads) = Racing.com, sportsbet.com.au***, crownbet.com.au***
  • Desktop Computers = Racing.com, sportsbet.com.au***, crownbet.com.au***
  • Mobile App = Racing.com
  • Racecourse = Live at the Victorian track hosting the meeting

(* Channel 78 interim broadcast to commence Friday, 26 June 2015)
(** Consult your local pub or club from Friday, 26 June 2015)
(*** Service available to Sportsbet and CrownBet account holders only)
What is Channel 78?
Channel 78 is a joint partnership between Racing Victoria and Seven West Media to broaden the reach of Victorian thoroughbred racing and showcase the sport, its many great stories and its personalities. It is a free-to-air channel broadcast using MPEG4 technology and will showcase Victorian thoroughbred racing 363 days-a-year. It will be integrated with digital streaming and other services at Racing.com.
When does Channel 78 begin broadcasting?
The showcase coverage of Victorian thoroughbred racing is contracted to commence on Channel 78 on Saturday, 29 August 2015. Seven West Media has kindly offered to commence an interim broadcast on Channel 78 from Friday, 26 June 2015 to assist punters, fans and participants impacted by the Sky Racing blackout. During the test period until 29 August, this will be a re-transmission of the existing online broadcast on Racing.com.
What will I see on Channel 78?
From 26 June 2015, Channel 78 will re-transmit the existing Racing.com coverage of Victorian
thoroughbred racing as an interim measure whilst Seven West Media commences preparations for the launch of its premium coverage on the channel from Memsie Stakes Day, 29 August. The Racing.com coverage incorporates live racing, raceday previews and interviews and replays.
Channel 78 will showcase Victorian thoroughbred racing only. The daily coverage on Channel 78 will see over 520 Victorian thoroughbred meetings covered annually when fully operational. Further details of the coverage will be announced upon launch of the premium service.
Where can I watch Channel 78?
Seven West Media will be able to transmit its interim broadcast on Channel 78 across its national
metropolitan network in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth. We are continuing to work on extending the coverage to regional areas as soon as possible.

Am I within the metropolitan broadcast network?
If you can only view regional broadcasters like Prime, WIN and Southern Cross in your home then you are unlikely to receive the interim broadcast of Channel 78. To view a map of the national metropolitan broadcast network including the postcodes contained within the broadcast area, click on “Channel 78 Interim Broadcast Map” under Quick Links on the rv.racing.com homepage.
What about viewers in country Victoria, Tasmania and other regional centres?
Racing Victoria is working with Seven West Media to extend the interim solution to regional areas as
quickly as possible, whilst also continuing discussions with Tabcorp on an agreement to get Victorian racing back on to Sky Racing’s wall-to-wall channels.
Punters, fans and participants in regional areas should be assured that they are an important part of
Seven West Media’s broadcast plans for its showcase coverage once officially launched. The goal of Racing Victoria and Seven West Media remains to showcase Victorian thoroughbred racing to the
widest possible audience.
Can I view the Channel 78 broadcast via Foxtel?
It is Racing Victoria’s desire for the Channel 78 signal to be re-transmitted through Foxtel at the earliest opportunity for punter convenience. Discussions regarding the re-transmission through Foxtel are continuing as a matter of priority.
What is the difference between MPEG2 and MPEG4?
The Seven Network’s other channels are broadcast using MPEG2. MPEG4 is a more efficient format of broadcasting which has the ability to provide better picture quality, particularly for sporting events.
How can I tell if my TV is MPEG4 compatible?
All major recognised brands of televisions, set top boxes and Personal Video Recorders (PVR’s)
purchased since 2009, including any devices bearing the Freeview logo, will have this capability, but
those bought prior to 2009 may not support MPEG4. If you are unsure if your current TV supports
MPEG4 you will need to refer to your TV manual or contact the manufacturer of your TV.
How do I know if my TV doesn’t support MPEG4?
TVs which do not support MPEG4 are most likely to demonstrate the following behaviour: Channel 78 appears in the channel list, but the picture is black and the sound may or may not be heard.
I think my TV is MPEG4 compatible but I can’t find Channel 78. Why?
Channel 78 should automatically appear in the channel list of most TVs. If not, then the first thing to do is to re-tune your TV. Most TVs have an option to automatically re-scan channels within the TV menu.
In many cases, Channel 78 will appear after completing this process. If you’re unsure how to re-scan channels you should refer to your TV manual or contact the manufacturer of your TV.
Can I still watch Channel 78 if my TV is not MPEG4 compatible?
Not without purchasing a set top box which supports MPEG4. Set top boxes range in price from
approximately $25 to $50, are relatively simply to connect to your TV and are available where most TVs are sold. The vast majority of set top boxes support MPEG4, however you should seek confirmation from sales staff when purchasing.
I have a set-top box but I still can’t get Channel 78?
Some of the very early set top boxes provided by Government as part of the Household Assistance
Scheme during Australia’s switch to digital TV may not be MPEG4 compatible.
Do I need to get a set top box to watch Channel 78 if I already have a Personal Video Recorder (PVR)?
You can use a PVR in similar fashion to a set top box to make your television MPEG4 compatible if you cannot immediately see Channel 78. If you’re unsure how, you should refer to your PVR manual or contact the manufacturer of your PVR.
Can I get Channel 78 through my Telstra T-Box?
Yes, you should be able to. If you cannot already see Channel 78 in your T-Box menu then you will
need to re-tune the channels via the Settings option in your menu. If you’re unsure how to re-tune
channels you should refer to your T-Box manual or contact Telstra.
If I need assistance in tuning my television or knowing if it’s compatible who do I call?
Following are the customer service numbers for all the major TV manufacturers:
Hisense 1800 447 367 8.30am – 7.30pm M-F, 9.00am – 5.00pm S-S
LG 1300 542 273 7.00am – 7.00pm 7 days
Panasonic 132 600 8.30am – 6.00pm M-F
Phillips 1300 886 649
Samsung 1300 362 603 24/7
Sharp 1300 135 022
Soniq 1300 765 663
Sony 1300 137 669 9.00am – 5.00pm M-F
TCL 1300 738 149 9.00am – 5.30pm 7 days
If I can’t see Channel 78 where else can I watch Victorian racing on a TV?
Victorian thoroughbred racing can also be viewed on TV in Victoria’s 92 TAB retail agencies and in
pubs and clubs within the metropolitan distribution network that elect to tune into Channel 78.
Racing.com can be streamed to a TV in any region with the appropriate supporting technology (refer
later).
When will vision be back on Sky Racing?
With the Seven West Media deal signed, discussions have re-commenced with Tabcorp in the hope of ending the current blackout on Sky Racing. Racing Victoria wants Sky Racing to continue to broadcast Victorian racing now and into the future on its wall-to-wall channels (Channel 519 and 520). Tabcorp has chosen not to broadcast Victorian races on any Sky Racing channels into homes, pubs and clubs since 16 June 2015.
Why have Tabcorp decided they don’t want to show Victorian racing on Sky Racing?
Tabcorp’s decision to blackout Victorian racing followed the RV Board’s resolution that its preferred
outcome for the broadcasting of Victorian thoroughbred racing was the combined free-to-air and digital broadcast deal tabled by Seven West Media, whilst maintaining the broadcast on Sky Racing 1 (Channel 519) and Sky Racing 2 (520). With the Seven West Media deal signed, discussions have recommenced with Tabcorp in the hope of ending the Sky Racing blackout. These discussions remain on-going.
Is Victorian racing being broadcast in my local pub or club?
Pubs and clubs within the national metropolitan network will be able to tune into Channel 78 from
Friday, 26 June 2015 if they have the appropriate TV. Some pubs and clubs across all regions of
Australia have commenced streaming the Racing.com coverage using Smart TVs. Check with your
local pub or club to confirm their broadcast arrangements. Racing Victoria has also re-commenced
discussions with Tabcorp about getting Victorian thoroughbred racing back into pubs and clubs
nationally via Sky Racing. These discussions remain on-going.
Is Victorian racing broadcast into TAB agencies?
It is currently being broadcast into Victoria’s 92 TAB retail agencies (those stores not located in pubs and clubs). Agency locations can be found at tab.com.au. Interstate punters will need to consult their local TAB agency to confirm their broadcast arrangements.
Can I continue to bet on Victorian races?
Yes, the TAB will be betting on all Victorian races as will other racing wagering operators.

Will the races be broadcast on radio?
Yes, RSN will continue to broadcast all Victorian races via 927 AM in metropolitan Melbourne and via relay stations across Australia.
What is Racing.com broadcasting?
Racing.com, via its Racing Live service, will continue to stream all Victorian thoroughbred racing on
desktop computers, tablets (iPads) and mobile phones (iPhones and Androids). Please go to the
Racing.com homepage on your device and click the appropriate WATCH NOW links.
Is the Racing Live service available on every device?
The Racing Live stream is available across computers, tablets (iPads) and mobile phones (iPhones and Androids) via the Racing.com website. The Racing Live service is available through the Racing.com IOS App and can also be streamed on smart TVs.
How do I watch Racing Live via the Racing.com App?
The latest version of the Racing.com App (1.6), which enables users to view Racing Live from within
the App, is available for download. Users will have to go to the App Store, and either download the
Racing.com App or, if already downloaded, click on their updates and update to the new version.
Racing Live can be accessed by clicking the play icon at the top of the Racing.com App. If the Play icon is not available, you will need to update your App. Racing.com is looking to broaden its App offering to include an App for Android in the coming months.
Is Racing Live stream available internationally on Racing.com?
Yes. The geo-block on viewers outside Australia has been lifted on Racing.com with Sky Racing
relinquishing the right to broadcast Victorian thoroughbred racing internationally.
Will there be any charge for streaming?
There is no charge to view the Racing Live broadcast on Racing.com. However, you may incur data
charges with your mobile or internet provider for live streaming so you are best to check with your
provider. Telstra fixed internet (home) customers can view the Racing Live broadcast on Racing.com unmetered, be it on your digital device or when streamed to your TV.
Is the Racing Live stream available through Android?
Yes, through any browser. You may be prompted to download a Plug-in, such as ‘Hook’, but after that initial download it should work without issue.
What do I have to do to get the Racing Live stream to work on my Mac? 
You should not encounter any issues on a Mac. There have been some issues within Safari browser
which Racing.com are working on. If an error arises in Safari, you will need to change your Privacy
settings. Go To Privacy Settings, and under Cookies and Website Data, tick ‘Always Allow’.
Can I stream the Racing Live feed onto my TV?
There is no technical reason why you should not be able to use a TV connector like Apple TV, Google Chromecast or a HDMI cable. You will need to consult with your third party connector for instructions on how to do this.
Is there any reason the Racing Live stream wouldn’t be working on my mobile browser?
The stream won’t work if you are set to private browsing or incognito. Exit this mode to ensure the
stream works.
Will the Racing Live stream be delayed on Racing.com?
There is always a slight delay of a few seconds with any live stream. We recommend you leave
yourself ample time to place any bet when viewing the stream.
Will I still be able to access free race replays via Racing.com?
Yes, race replays remain free on all devices via Racing.com, including the IOS App. They are made
available within 10 minutes of a race.
Is there anywhere else online I can watch Victorian racing?
Sportsbet and Crownbet account holders can also view Victorian races live when they log onto their
Sportsbet or Crownbet account via the web.

Blackout threat galvanises industry

By Shane Anderson (@globalgallop) for racing.com

  
Racing Victoria (RV) is working to bring forward a media rights deal with Seven West Media (SWM) as early as Tuesday with dedicated television coverage operating on channel 78.
This is entirely contingent on the three Victorian metropolitan race clubs signing up to the proposal.
Industry sources have said that the Clubs are aligned with the strategy of signing with SWM but are negotiating individual terms with RV.
Threats by Tabcorp to cease broadcasting Victorian thoroughbred racing as of June 16 came after RV announced that SWM was its preferred media rights partner in preference to Tabcorp’s Sky Racing.
RV has been working closely with the three metropolitan Clubs – the VRC, MRC and MVRC – along with Country Racing Victoria (CRV) since making its announcement on June 7 as to who should have the media rights for Victoria’s thoroughbred industry.
RV does not own the rights for Victorian Racing, they are individually owned by the three Clubs and CRV. RV has control of CRV’s media rights until 2028. Industry sources have made it clear that all groups are in alignment with RV in wanting to partner with SWM.
The industry has not been shocked but greatly disappointed by Tabcorp’s threat to cease coverage of Victorian thoroughbred racing as they have been operating on interim broadcasting deals since December, 2014. It is understood that Tabcorp’s response has galvanised the industry.
This is not the first time that the industry has been on the receiving end of threats from Tabcorp.
However, as earnings from the Victorian joint venture wagering partnership are material to Tabcorp’s overall earnings, industry sources believe that Tabcorp will want to come to an arrangement with Victoria soon.
The Victorian Racing Industry, the three codes of racing that covers thoroughbreds, harness and greyhounds, has a joint venture relationship with Tabcorp for wagering. The joint venture still has nine years left to run.
The decision to side with SWM over Tabcorp and Sky Racing is one that the industry sources say has not been taken lightly.
Why would RV be willing to take a risk in damaging relations with its joint venture wagering partner for the coverage of racing?
It all comes down to the offer made and whether that was in the best interests for Victorian racing. And based on the response from the Victorian industry, Tabcorp’s offer was nowhere near as attractive to what SWM made.
RV have never wanted an ‘either or’ approach to the negotiations around media rights for Victorian racing yet it appears that has always been Tabcorp’s approach.
Tabcorp offered a deal that bundles together all major components of Victoria’s media rights – domestic, international and digital – to be controlled by Sky Racing.
This offer was to be for nine years, matching up with the remainder of the wagering joint venture partnership that exists between Tabcorp and the Victorian industry.
Figures had been mentioned through various media outlets that Tabcorp were willing to pay $30 million per year for the duration of the partnership but this has now been dismissed as incorrect.
Tabcorp’s offer valued the domestic broadcast rights of Victorian thoroughbred racing at close to $15.5 million per annum, which would be run through the joint venture wagering deal, and come in closer to $12.5 million per annum net after expenses.
It is understood that Tabcorp valued international and digital rights at a combined $10 million per annum.
Tabcorp wanted to maintain the international rights for Victorian racing, which under the current deal is shared 50/50 by Tabcorp and the race club broadcast.
The Victorian industry has long been frustrated by the fact that the race club has no control as to what meeting is offered internationally, it is offered at Tabcorp’s discretion. Victorian officials are concerned that Tabcorp doesn’t view the product as being premium. Many feel that revenues are not being maximised in this area.
Tabcorp also wanted the non exclusive digital rights – through racing.com – to be run through the joint venture wagering deal with the industry.
In all, it is understood by industry sources that Tabcorp’s offer would be around $22.5 million per annum and run through the joint venture deal.
Tabcorp has also downplayed the value of Victorian thoroughbred racing yet the industry believes that the decline in pari-mutuel wagering has levelled off and fixed odds wagering has grown despite threats around the effect of the race-fields policy.
Industry sources say that Victorian racing is in a very healthy financial position. RV understands the importance of the joint venture relationship with Tabcorp and wants to strength the wagering deal. The media rights negotiations are separate to that joint venture wagering relationship.
RV and the Clubs have wanted shorter term deals and to be able to negotiate separately around media rights. This is a similar approach that other sporting organisations, such as the Australian Football League and Cricket Australia, have taken as it allows for technology advances and customer behaviours to be managed better.
Tabcorp’s nine year deal is considered unusual because of the changing environment that the industry exists in.
It has not been a strategy by the industry to bundle the rights together as it undervalues them individually.
Industry sources have confirmed that there is very little difference in the financial return to the Victorian racing by the offers made by Tabcorp and SWM around domestic rights. The major difference was around coverage.
It is understandable that Tabcorp wants to do a bundled deal as they would get more for less. Yet, RV and the Clubs believe that they can get a greater return for the industry by negotiating separately, especially around digital and international rights.
SWM wants to partner with Victorian racing for five years in a joint venture around domestic rights, with an opportunity for parties to extend beyond that at its conclusion. This means that SWM would have the license rights for the 5 years of the deal.
There would be a shared arrangement around advertising, which will likely include relationships with a variety of wagering providers, and could include Tabcorp.
The deal with SWM would not involve international rights or digital rights, giving RV the opportunity of dealing with many partners for digital coverage. RV has a non exclusive deal in place with corporate bookmaker Sportsbet and it is expected that there will be further announcements in this space this week.
Industry sources have also said a key component of the SWM offer is around customer engagement, working with the industry to better understand racing’s customers and grow numbers.
The industry is united in believing that improved customer engagement will provide significant wagering uplift. They are keen to continue to work with Tabcorp as the joint venture wagering partner to capitalise on this separately to any media rights discussion.
A deal with SWM would also create competitive tension for future media rights and wagering negotiations. The AFL similarly found competitive tension advantageous in media rights negotiations, significantly improving the value of its media rights over the past 15 years.
SWM would have a dedicated channel, utilising racing.com and other resources, that would operate on Channel 78, one of SWM’s datacasting channels that previously broadcast Fitness, Family, Home and Beauty content.
It is understood that this channel would be known as racing.com and would operate 24 hours a day. Outside of live race day coverage, the channel would also create additional programming content.
SWM would invest heavily in the joint venture, especially in production, yet take no equity in the racing.com business. The asset would remain in the ownership of the Victorian industry.
It is well known that SWM values highly live sports coverage on its suite of programming, arguably above all. The network already has a well established relationship with racing in broadcasting feature racing events around Australia.
In developing the racing.com channel 78 coverage, SWM would continue to honour the current arrangements that exist with deals on the main channel. This could mean that, during Melbourne Cup week, there would be the usual coverage that SWM offers on the main channel working side by side with the dedicated racing.com channel 78.
It is understood that the coverage of racing.com channel 78 would have an appropriate budget for all meetings, providing a minimum standard of coverage every day of the week, no matter region, that would meet what was considered the benchmark of recent years – coverage of Moonee Valley Friday night meetings on TVN. This would then be expanded for the premium meetings during the week, principally the metropolitan programs.
It is also understood that SWM would guide the industry over talent selection to improve the coverage of racing from what has previously been offered.
It is understood that the industry would be keen to eventually have discussions with other racing jurisdictions to strategically build content that would compliment Victorian racing in the ‘off period’ during the day. However, the main focus would to always showcase Victorian racing.
Racing industry sources believe that there will never be another opportunity like this again and that the upside in taking the opportunity to partner with SWM is potentially huge.
It is understood that SWM Chairman, Kerry Stokes, is across all aspects of the deal, with CEO Tim Worner and Director Ryan Stokes key players in negotiations.
RV recently signed a deal with Telstra for ten years which will see the industry adopt the Telstra Digital Video Network 2 (DVN2) technology, which will allow for multiple feeds to be broadcast from Victorian race tracks.
Tabcorp have historically controlled this technology but RV has changed this and upgraded the technology in the partnership with Telstra. The potential of this deal will allow for customers to choose what vision they would like to watch during a broadcast. Racing will be able to be broadcast in a way unlike ever before.
The RV board was 100% united in wanting to partner with SWM. This has not been lost on many in the industry. The VRC, MRC, MVRC and CRV are also aligned with RV but have delayed signing their rights while the finer details of their individual returns are agreed to.
The industry believes that this deal will strengthen the joint venture wagering relationship that it has with Tabcorp, and want Tabcorp to advertise on the new channel.
RV has also kept Martin Pakula, Victoria’s Minister for Racing, informed throughout the negotiation period.
The Victorian industry would be looking at an official launch of the racing.com channel 78 during the spring carnival, with the likely official launch being on Memsie Stakes Day on August 29. However, they are prepared to carry the racing.com Racing Live coverage from Tuesday so that Victorian racing is not lost to customers around Australia.
Racing Live on racing.com began coverage of Victorian racing on March 15 after the demise of TVN. The digital coverage has continued to build viewership levels over the past three months on racing.com, giving Victorian racing guaranteed coverage as media rights negotiations have continued.
SWM have responded to Tabcorp’s threat of ceasing to cover Victorian racing from Tuesday by fast tracking the capability of channel 78 to take the feed of Racing Live so that the industry is disadvantaged as least as possible, solidifying their relationship with the Victorian industry.
This would also put pressure on many pubs and clubs around Australia that broadcast racing through deals with Sky Racing. The annual cost for venues to carry Sky Racing’s broadcast of racing is believed to be $25,000 per year. What will be the response from venues around Australia if Victorian racing is not covered on the Sky Racing broadcast? 

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