In November of 2022, Lane’s End, one of the world’s premiere Thoroughbred farms, and Keeneland, the historic Thoroughbred race course and auction house, joined forces ahead of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships to offer a pair of innovative firsts for the horse racing industry: an immersive Metaverse experience and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own a percentage of Flightline, the world’s highest ranked racehorse.
The first-of-its-kind Metaverse experience, designed to replicate the excitement of Keeneland’s iconic November Breeding Stock Sale, is a user-friendly virtual experience hosted on Spatial and accessible via Meta Quest headset, desktop computer, or mobile phone. Participants are afforded a rare front-row seat to a virtual sales ring modeled after Keeneland’s and interactive opportunities to learn about the rich histories of Lane’s End, Keeneland and the Thoroughbred industry.
As part of the activation, bidders were given the chance to join a 40-share syndicate in Flightline–a 2.5% ownership stake–via online, in-person, and phone auction.
All told, 180 viewers were live in Spatial during the auction. The space was visited 1,300 times on event day and 1,800 times overall, with visitors spending a combined 200 hours in the space. It garnered over 8,000 views on YouTube, more than ten times the in-person audience.
The 2.5% fractional interest in Flightline, meanwhile, sold to a bidder at Keeneland for an astounding $4.6 million, well beyond expectations. And televised Breeders’ Cup coverage of the Flightline Metaverse Auction Experience aired to an audience of 4.6 million viewers, the largest since 1995.