TVB to air horse races, Mark Six draws starting August

July 14, 2015 16:07
Fears have been raised that broadcasting Mark Six draws on TVB's J2 channel may encourage more young people to gamble. Photo: ATV

The Jockey Club said live broadcasts of horse racing and Mark Six draws will switch from Asia Television (ATV) to Television Broadcasts Ltd. (TVB) starting Aug. 1, Metro Daily reported Tuesday.

It said existing cooperation with ATV cannot be carried out next season as the troubled television station has failed to renew its broadcast license.

TVB's digital J2 channel, which mainly targets young viewers, will broadcast horse racing events and Mark Six lottery draws from next month.

The Jockey Club said the decision was made in the best interest of the public, and viewers can still watch these programs via paid TV channels and other online media platforms.

TVB said in a statement it is pleased to strike a partnership with the Jockey Club on its J2 channel, which now has a large viewer base. It said about 85 percent of J2 channel viewers are aged 25 or above.

Apart from horse racing, other TV content provided by the Jockey Club will be aired on J2 and the Pearl channel. 

Legislator Charles Mok said around 20 percent of local TV viewers would be unable to watch horse racing programs on J2 channel as digital TV is not fully available across local households.

Mok also said he is concerned that airing horse racing and Mark Six programs over J2, which mainly caters to a relatively younger audience, could encourage more young people to gamble.

He said it would be more appropriate to air such programs on high-definition Jade and other channels.

ATV's Mark Six program host Frankie Choi Kwok-wai said it's a pity the station would no longer be able to air Jockey Club programs, but he hopes viewers would get used to the new arrangement.

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