Saturday, November 14, 2015

Reactions Sure Are Different When Things are Popular

Harness racing was popular at one time, not really that long ago.

That popularity helped push forth some interesting vibes from time to time, like the night when the crowd went crazy and rioted at old Roosevelt Raceway when a race was made official that should not have been. There have been many "riots" in some form in racing over the years. Attention-seeking politicians, every day folks, newspapers, all paid attention.

Now, it's just ho hum.

Last night there was an elimination race for the TVG Trot at the Big M. As most know, elimination races can yield some wacky results because the drivers don't drive - even though they are supposed to - for the betting public but for the trainer. Not all drivers, but some.

This one was arguably one for the ages, with heavy favorite Bee a Magician heading to the back of the bus in soft fractions.

There was no riot, nothing more than griping on social media, a ten or twelve page thread on a chat board. This is old hat now, and the masses know nothing will be done about it. Shut up and bet; or in recent history, shut up and don't bet.

Flipping the popularity switch, with people picking a few players for a football team and throwing in $3 to see how they do in a tournament, it is the exact opposite. 

"Evidently conflating banning DFS with saving the world, AG Eric Schneiderman’s statement concluded in a blaze of self-importance: ‘Today we have sent a clear message: not in New York, and not on my watch’. The hubris was laid on so thick, you could almost taste it."

Since the companies in question are fighting it, and didn't cower in the presence of the words of the all mighty Schneiderman, he upped the ante and is going after the banks

DFS popular, racing not popular. DFS political hay, harness racing political nothing.

Someone going to the back with a heavy chalk with hundreds of thousands of dollars bet on the outcome is no big deal. It's buyer beware. It's 'part of the game'. Go tell it to a fencepost. Meanwhile, the world is ending because people are playing a game they've played for 50 years, but it's now done in one spot over the internet.  It's like this because very few people are watching one of those things, and are engaged in the other.

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