Thursday, March 13, 2008

Will We Ever Fight for the Sport Again?

The Examiner story is out "Horseman Not Impressed with Subsidy"

Give it a read if interested.

Upper Freehold's Dr. David Meirs, the owner ofWalnridge Farm, a standardbred breeding facility, said $90 million is not an "impact amount" and not enough to do much good.

"If you're drowning and a little twoby four comes along, you're damn glad to see it," he said. "It keeps us from sinking completely. It leaves us treading water."

Blaso said racinos are the answer to the state's horseracing and debt situations.

"Without having to raise taxes, or eliminate entire departments like the Department of Agriculture, [racinos] would have been a steady flow of cash," he said

He said that by the time New Jerseybred foals mature and are ready to race, the supplement would be depleted.

"It would be back to the beggingAtlantic City for funding stage again," he said.

Boy, reading that article makes me think it's like we are standing in a bread line in 1928 Minsk.

This is different than what I see in harness racing for the participants in 2008:

Tim Tetrick made more money last year driving a horse than a top rated vascular surgeon.

There is a story out that Jerry Silva wants to buy a third of a horse for $2.5 million dollars.

A broodmare went for a half mil last year at Harrisburg.

Donato Hanover raced a whole 13 times, made a couple of mil and was syndicated for probably the annual gross domestic product of Madagascar.

The North America Cup will go for $1,500,000, which is less than Woodbine's average handle.

The 15th ranked driver in North America - Corey Callahan - has made over $50,000 in two months. That is about 300% more than a Wharton Business School graduate.

All of the above is currently happening in an industry with a fan base that is virtually non-existent.

Sorry to be crass, but when you see a business that we were all once extremely proud of turn into that article - especially, because never once do they speak of the customer, or growing the sport, they just speak (and have the gall to complain) of how much of the public's money they will be splitting - it can't help but annoy any fair-minded individual.

We lost our fight. We lost our pride. We don't try to grow our sport anymore; our efforts are all focused on growing our wallets with free money. And to me, that is truly sad.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'd rather drown than grab onto any twoby four with a slot machine on it.
It's almost like the twoby four would bring you to shore, only to get shot in the head.
Sure, you didn't drown, but you still died.
Slot machines saving harness racing has to be the biggest oxymoron going these days.
As far as Jerry Silva goes... he is becoming quite annoying.
Maybe he needs his own reality tv show or something....but clearly, he needs a new hobby.

best regards,


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