The two-year-old bay filly is known as #Peopleshorse by her 1300+ twitter followers, 500 of whom are also her owners. Tweet Lady was bought by Racing for Change, the body set up to give horse racing a much higher profile. Racing for Change was panned for some of its early ideas but it has stuck doggedly and admirably to its task under CEO Rod Street, a man who knows that time, patience, good grace and perseverance can turn attitudes around.
He won’t boast and bluster about it but tonight’s victory will mean an awful lot to Rod Street who knows the value of social media in any marketing campaign. Racing badly needs young blood and were Dracula to take a deep bite of the collective social media market, 90% of his subsequent intake would be frothing with teenage oxygen.
Of tonight’s victory Rod Street said,
The aim of the initiative was to give a diverse group of people a taste of racehorse ownership with the objective of making racing more accessible. The mix of people involved is as we envisaged – horse lovers, punters and newcomers. To have such an early success with a win on only her fourth run is magical. So many people were willing her on. Racing is made for social media initiatives like this.
Let’s hope many more enrol free here as Tweet Lady owners and cheer her, and racing, to more victories.
Racing For Change’s twitterhorse was loaded into the starting stalls some time ago, though the blindfold was on the news rather than the horse. Now Eamonn Wilmott and James Knight’s twitterhorse has jumped out a few lengths clear of the field just weeks before the planned announcement by Racing For Change.
Racing for Change quickly recognised the effectiveness of social media. CEO Rod Street has been a regular on twitter for some time. and its power as an informal communication network for brands was evident to Rod. That power, triggered the idea and RFC launches its own Twitterhorse, a 2YO filly to be called ‘Lady Tweet’, via Twitter in May.
Rod said, “We’ve been working on this project for a while and recently registered a few Twitter-based names with Weatherbys. One name we wanted was Tweet Tweet but it already belonged to a 1991 broodmare! Lady Tweet has been chosen as it fits our chosen filly’s pedigree nicely, though we’ve got a few more reserved for the future.
“We’re keeping the identity of the filly and details of the yard under wraps for now, ready for the launch in May but suffice to say this will be the ‘people’s’ horse‘ – we’re aiming to create the world’s largest virtual racing club, where all you have to do to be a member is follow it!
“The purpose is to promote the racehorse and tell racing’s story to a new audience, whilst providing interest to the existing one.
“It’s no surprise to me that the first paid Twitter syndicate has appeared and Eammon’s suggestion gathered momentum at a stunning rate – which demonstrates what a superb medium Twitter is. I put myself down for a share incidentally and hope I was in the first 50!
“If Eammon’s syndicate buy a 2yo sprinter then we’d love to race against it! Lady Tweet v The Twitterati? If I’ve got a share in one and responsibility for the other, that’ll make for a day out!!”
Eamonn Wilmott welcomed Rod’s plans for a people’s horse using social media. He said, “I think Rod is doing a great job at Racing for Change and this sort of initiative underlines that. I’m sure other trainers will now pick up on the idea and it can only be good for racing. It’s nice to have such positive stories to balance some of the recent negativity. I wish Racing For Change every success with their horse, and we look forward to meeting our twitter rival on the racecourse!”
Racing For Change’s people’s website is here and news will appear soon about plans for Lady Tweet.
25 of Britain’s 60 racecourses are offering a number of free entry tickets during April. On twenty eight racedays in all – from Perth to Brighton – many racegoers will pay nothing for admission.
The initiative, the brainchild of Racing For Change, is an ideal way to introduce friends to racing and more than 70,000 tickets have already been ordered. There are still some available though so choose your course from the map below then click here for full details.