In the light of the news that California is adding a provision in a bill (some would say "burying it in a bill") to raise takeout in that state, we actually have some good news for racing here in Ontario.
Standardbred Canada, spearheaded by Darryl Kaplan has detailed a plan to grow racing handles by taking 5% out of the slots purse pool and spending it on betting initiatives and more. He has a good ally: Leading driver Jody Jamieson. Jody said in a podcast detailing the idea: "It took me awhile but I now realize betting drives our business". The recent shut down of Quebec racing and the problems in New Jersey he says "opened his eyes".
We will speak more about this later. However, is it not refreshing that on the left coast racing could be further hampered by a takeout hike and here in Ontario harness-land there is actually a movement to grow the sport? There is hope in some quarters.
Other notes: Chuck Keeling has left Great Canadian Gaming. Chuck is super-smart and a great ambassador. We are losing some great people.
Best quote I have read from a horseplayer about the proposed California takeout hike. He is speaking about fighting the CHRB and the hike itself: "You can't win a fight with a suicidal patient."
For the story on how the Horseplayers Association feels about the takeout hike, it is now in the Bloodhorse here. It seems from quotes that they wanted to keep this pretty quiet. There is a pretty much "no comment" from Cali racing.