Tee-Ohh Tuesday

Steve Turner/Hollywood Park
The Zenyatta phenomenon is continually fun to watch. A good deal of times in racing the promo is forced. This can and does work for many companies and personalities but often times it fizzles out. With Zenyatta it does not; it just keeps on coming. Terrell Owens of the Bengals is apparently a fan, so as a fan (with a little more pull than you or I) he got to visit the big mare. 

"She is huge" he said.

Trainer John Shirreffs signed an autograph for Owens, which in itself is the opposite of what we'd expect. If I was Shirreffs I would probably be a little worried this morning. After speaking with Owens there is a chance that the big mare might wake up, demand a new stall, better feed and want the ball more.

I watched Bet Night Live last night for the Woodbine races. The crew there seems to be finding their way. As well, the Central Ontario Standardbred Association donated $500 to each show, so two newbies can make $250 bets on select races. Last night both of them won! It is amazing to watch this show now - doing things that should be done and have been done by other gambling businesses since the beginning of time. I have not seen a horse racing human interest story in months.

Speaking of ass-backwards, there is a video out about the California horse racing board meeting a bettor. They do not exactly speak the same language. "We have to pay to put on the show" is one of the most insane lines used by racing people to justify high takeouts and I am glad this was addressed with the Wynn example. It costs big money to make a pack of matches too, but they are a penny. It is about optimal price for optimal volume for max profit. Every business, gambling and otherwise does this, but with horse racing it is like it is some sort of wild, unattainable puzzle.

There is a brand new forum on the web for harness buffs - the harnesslink forums. Check it out.

One of the continents most passionate (and excellent) horseplayers passed on this past weekend, Richard Bauer. Rich was behind the Magna Boycott back in the early 2000's and had a real love for the sport, and doing things right. Horse racing handicappers are a dying breed and passionate ones like Rich who made and wanted to continue to force change in a business unwilling to will be sorely missed. Rest in Peace Rich; it was a pleasure to converse with you over the years.

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