Important Things to Know about Owning a Racehorse

Richard Schibell Racing

Derby season is just around the corner. There will be thousands of racing enthusiasts watching the Kentucky Derby live, with millions watching from their television sets. Kentucky Derby dates back in 1875 and has been the longest-running horse racing event in the American History. The first event was held on May 17, 1875, and used to be a part of the Olympics Games. It has been the most heavily wagered sports event with a record of $194.30 million on-and-off the tracks in 2015. On a yearly average, the Kentucky Derby has recorded about $130 million bets. This does not include millions more of wagers on the black market.

With these massive millions on the records and rising interests in horse racing, you might wonder if it’s more feasible to own a racehorse (or become part-owner). Or would it be safer to simply plunk down your bets with the masses?

Richard Schibell has been a lifelong Thoroughbred racing owner and enthusiasts since 2000. He has garnered a total of 38 firsts and 308 starts since the start of his career.

So you want to have your own racehorse wishing they could be the next Richard Schibell racehorses? Or perhaps get your hands on that 14-karat gold trophy? It could be possible but quite be challenging. Whether you are considering a sole ownership or racing partnerships or having a few friends together to own a racehorse, here are few considerations that will set your level of expectation and help you live your journey to doing things you love the most.

  1. 1. Racehorse prices are dependent on the current economic trends

Like all financial investments, the market for racehorses reached its lowest peak in 2009 during the heart of the Great Recession. A lot of Americans have felt the impact of the recession and investing on a horse seemed like an irresponsible decision to make.

Since then, racehorse prices have increased drastically. A record from The Jockey Club showed that in 2009 and 2010, the average price for a yearling was around $40,000. This has increased to $60,000 by 2013 and maxed at $65,000 by 2015. And those are only average prices – some prized horses could reach up to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

During the past years, the median price for a yearling – a racehorse that is about 1-2 years old – has been in the low- to mid $20,000. The Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association reported that inexpensive horses can be owned starting at $10,000 which most of the time you shared with some other owners. It is advisable to buy horses when the economy is low or join an organization where you can have 5% or 10% of the shares. That way you can still learn the basic ground rules and avoid any costly mistakes.

Richard Schibell Racing owns Thoroughbred racehorses since 2000 and has been winning in the majority of the events. He has earned average earnings per start of $3,979 from 2000 to present.

  1. 2. The initial value is only a portion of the total ownership cost

Owners like Richard Schibell must take care of expenses to ensure that the racehorses are all geared up for the event. If you want to invest, you have to foot the expenses for housing, training, and feeding of your horses. This does not include additional expenses for veterinarians and race-entry charges. All these could amount to about $60,000 or more per year.

  1. 3. Some racehorses do not offer a great return on investment

Most novices would think that once they own a racehorse, they are guaranteed to get rich and can have an early retirement. Actually, owning a racehorse is a risk and for some, it is a money-losing deal.

Experts advised not to invest in racehorses unless you are passionate and dedicated to the sport. When you invest in something as risky and big as this, you have to think of this as a disposable income. In this kind of sport, the chances of losing are about 90%.

To be one of the top earners like Richard Schibell, you have to know that spreading out your investments on multiple racehorses will increase your chances of a higher return and achieving your goals. Richard Schibell racehorses do not include one but more than 20 Thoroughbreds. His top horses Marg of Beauty and Thinking of Mom have average earnings of $147,770 and $109,360, respectively.

The common mistake most amateur enthusiasts make is entering into this sport and putting all their eggs in a single basket. It is always difficult to hit the jackpot with a single horse for the first time. This could and may happen – beginner’s luck as they say. In reality, this dream could only come true 20% of the time.

  1. 4. Owning a racehorse can be intensely fun

Owners like Richard Schibell love what they are doing and consider this investment as an “expensive hobby” rather than a “risky business venture”. A lot of people enjoy sports better if they are passionate or have an emotional attachment to it. Experiences that intensify a Thoroughbred ownership include a genuine love for the racehorses, a chance to be participants instead of an observer, the adrenaline rush from seeing your runner compete, an opportunity to race at the highest levels of racing events, and social encounters with like-minded aficionados, and if luck is at your side, the excitement of being a Kentucky Derby challenger.

Breeders like Richard Schibell Racing believe that this kind of sport is a tricky business that needs patience, perseverance, skill, and an enormous amount of luck.

  1. 5. If you get fortunate, your payoff will be tremendous

Gambling can be fun and thrilling, but when you get involved on a more personal and deeper level, the stakes are huge and payoffs can be massively rewarding. Since he started in 2000, Richard Schibell has garnered an accumulative earning of $1,225,500. Of course, it did not happen overnight.

If you want to own a racehorse, you have to understand that not all investments pay off big time. There might be some exceptions, but in reality, most racehorse owners, spend hundreds of thousands of dollars before actually hitting the jackpot.

In conclusion, if you want to own a racehorse, you have to make sure that you put your heart and soul into it. Always figure out ahead of time what are your personal ownership goals. These goals will determine what kind of racehorse owner you will be. The thrill and excitement you will feel from this ownership will depend on those goals and how you want to achieve them.