Monday, August 27, 2012

Saving Us

Watching the racing industry in Ontario is tough, for many reasons.

Currently there seems to be some denial going on, as the industry is failing to plan for the future. It's not all their fault. The structure stinks with no leader, and there is a ton of hopium out there, looking for some sort of White Knight, or a government report to surface where slots are returned to racetracks.

Cangamble looked today at some items in the industry report, and looked at some things that may help, like holding the yearling sales later this year instead of this next month. We need to hear more of this.

Today, Woodbine poured some water on those who think the status-quo is still an option. They've deleted all Thursday cards for the rest of the year, hoping to save about $3 million dollars.

Our industry will never be the same. The status quo has left, never to return. And horse racing in Ontario is not the only industry that has been affected in this way. The line is long.

Seth Godin wrote a perfect post about this several years ago, mainly in response to the newspaper industry's unwillingness to change. Called "Who Will Save Us?" here is a portion:

Who will save book publishing?

What will save the newspapers?

What means 'save'?

If by save you mean, "what will keep things just as they are?" then the answer is nothing will. It's over.

If by save you mean, "who will keep the jobs of the pressmen and the delivery guys and the squadrons of accountants and box makers and transshippers and bookstore buyers and assistant editors and coffee boys," then the answer is still nothing will. Not the Kindle, not the iPad, not an act of Congress.

We need to get past this idea of saving, because the status quo is leaving the building, and quickly. Not just in print of course, but in your industry too.

Woodbine is starting to make some preparations, and the rest of Ontario has to come together as soon as possible in the same way. The status-quo is gone, but there is still a chance at a new paradigm if the planning starts today.


1 comment:

Eric Poteck said...

The motivation for Woodbine to cancel Thursday's could be due to the horse shortage and their willingness to provide full field cards to appease Horseplayers or the fact that their purse account is way overdrawn.

Pocket, you set the line and i'll make a play.