Types of Horse Ownership
One of the great things about racehorse ownership is that there are a variety of options available for anyone interested in getting into racing which can be arranged depending on your budget and the level of involvement you are looking for.
Individual ownership is exactly that. The horse has only one owner who covers all costs, makes all the decisions and gets to enjoy all the rewards. This type of ownership, obviously, involves the highest individual cost, but also means you call the shots.
A partnership is the most common form of ownership. It provides the partners with many advantages, such as the sharing of costs - and the fun. Partnerships are limited to between two and six people. They can be formed between anyone - family, friends, work mates, sports teams, whoever.
In most cases it requires one enthusiastic senior partner to liaise directly with the trainer. It’s that person’s role to make sure all the partners are kept up to speed on what’s happening with the horse.
Syndicates are another common form of multiple person-ownership. The minimum number of owners is two, but there is no maximum number of members of a syndicate. Syndicates and Partnerships have many similarities although syndicates are registered differently, and operate under a different set of rules defined by Harness Racing New Zealand (HRNZ).
Syndicates must appoint an official Syndicate Manager who is then authorized to control the syndicate. The Syndicate Manager is responsible for communication between the syndicate members and the trainer, and accounting functions. Their role is pivotal to the enjoyment that the syndicate members derive from being involved.
Company Ownership is also a possibility in New Zealand. Harness Racing New Zealand (HRNZ) must approve the company for racing horses. Essentially shareholders in the company are the owners of the asset, in this case the horse or horses.
Leasing - an alternative to ownership
In New Zealand you do not have to purchase a horse to enjoy the fun of ownership. Many first-time entrants into the industry choose to lease rather than buy a horse.
Leasing provides the opportunity for people to race a horse without having to get the capital investment to purchase the horse to begin with.
Essentially the horse belongs to the lessee (person or partnership or syndicate) for racing purposes. The lessee is responsible for the costs associated with the care and racing of the horse and collects the rewards from racing.
Leases are subject to the registration of a formal lease agreement that is held by Harness Racing New Zealand (HRNZ). The terms of a lease vary from lease to lease.
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