Betfair and the VRC today announced a landmark agreement that will see the VRC's Melbourne Cup Day races streamed online to Betfair's overseas customer base of over 3 million people.

Initially for a one year period, the non-exclusive agreement is the first time the VRC has allowed any overseas wagering company outside North America to stream its races online.

"We're delighted to have entered into this arrangement with the VRC. For our first local streaming agreement to cover Australia's premier race day is a real thrill for us. We're sure it will attract a lot of interest amongst our overseas customer base," said Betfair's CEO, Andrew Twaits.

"The challenge for us now is to work with the rest of the racing industry, including the other two codes, to help take Australian racing to the world.

"Betfair's overseas customers have already shown strong year-round interest in Australian racing. Over 40% of the people betting on Australian thoroughbred racing are from overseas.

"Providing overseas punters with access to quality vision and tailored form can only increase their betting activity on the sport, which in turn will help grow racing's funding base."

VRC CEO, Dale Monteith said, "The VRC, which has pioneered wagering on Australian racing through the Melbourne Cup, is delighted to be able to partner with Betfair to take the 2009 Emirates Melbourne Cup Day to the world. This initiative builds upon strategies undertaken by the VRC, over the past decade, to encourage the world to wager on the race that stops our nation and to return tangible benefits to the Victorian Racing Industry.

"Last year it is estimated that 700 million people in 120 countries watched the Melbourne Cup live or on replay. The arrangement this year with Betfair will enable its customers to be able to watch the race once they have had a bet on the race.

"We look forward to working with Betfair to maximize the returns to Victorian racing, from this exciting new initiative, which hopefully can be expanded in the near term to include days other than Melbourne Cup Day at Flemington."

Betfair Media Release Published 15/10/09