Things that Make You Go Hmmm

With apologies to Tom LaMarra, who titled his blog that, this makes me wonder. It's a quote from the Director of Racing in Pennsylvania:

"If you are going to the track trying to make a fortune, find something else," Tufano said. "If you are looking solely to win at gambling, there are better options."

With you, me, players everywhere, working our butts off to beat racing, is it not counter-productive to hear that we should "find something else" from a Director of Racing? Isn't he, and others like them (especially in slots jurisdictions who get most purse money from gaming no less) supposed to try and make betting racing competitive and at the very least sell it?


Tinky said...

It is a profoundly stupid thing to have said. And, it underscores a primary problem that has afflicted the U.S. industry for decades, namely that those who run the show do not understand that racing is, in many respects, most attractive as a form of gambling to those who have the potential to win (or do relatively well) in the long run.

In other words, especially as big pool exotics have come to be emphasized by racetracks, there is a remarkable ignorance amongst executives of how racing can (and should) separate itself from other forms of gambling.

Poker has been wildly successful in large part because players can and often do succeed. Most racing executives don't understand that their game could enjoy a similar marketing advantage. Instead, we get this.

Anonymous said...

The comment was made by a realist, who has to deal with problem/compulsive gambling and its consequences every day, and from every direction in his state.

It was perfectly sensible in that light.

(not that anybody so affected is going to heed his warnings)

The first commenter does make a very valid point while alluding to even more.

The North American horse racing industry has failed blatantly over at least two decades and pushing three decades to market racing appropriately.

Horse racing is suffering greatly in 2011 as are many homeowners who cannot afford their mortgages. Well guess what - in both cases, it is their own fault. The people who caused the current recession are those very people who never could afford what they were buying.

Horse racing management is solely responsible for how poorly horse racing is presented to the public, when they have huge advantages over any other form of gambling, and especially any other form of legal gambling.

The first commenter fails to mention that Poker is "wildly successful" (somewhere??) because everyone 'knows' a deck or cards almost from infancy.

The general public, when drawn to the race track for the first time by a free car vacuum, knows nothing about what they are doing while the tracks combine to assist the newcomers to an extent which approaches zero.

The general public comes to the track knowing the object of the game and little more. They need direct assistance and I have never yet heard of one racing entity on this continent willing to give it to them.

I can understand why the casino down the street doesn't want to help you to win $10,000, but why in the hell doesn't the race track just outside of town want to help you win $10,000????

Now if you'll excuse me, I must go and read a story about "turnstile spinners".

Anonymous said...

I wonder how the above commenter comes to that conclusion about that quote. He must be reading a different article.

Anonymous said...

Yes: "If you are looking solely to win at gambling, there are better options."

If he is worried about "problem gambling" he sure has a funny way of saying it. It's like talking about crystal meth versus crack. "If you are looking at getting high, there are better options.....

Anonymous said...

If it weren't for reading this blog, I wouldn't know anything about wagering. The guest comment that said that the racetracks don't help the newcomers is right. The programs give you a definition of what a trifecta, exacta and superfecta are...big deal, I could read that in the damn dictionary! Tell me something I don't know. I'm not trying to become a millionaire via betting, and to me, Tufano's comment was insulting to my intelligence.

Poker is way easier to play than the ponies, there's less interference. By that I mean the cards come out the way the dealer throws them, they're not tampered with like horse racing. If you lose a hand because of your judgement, your choices, it's not because the deck tested positive for a Grade 2 drug.

There's more corruption going on in the paddock than the betting public realizes and that in itself makes it unfair to those of us who really want to enjoy the sport.


Anonymous said...

Very moronic statement from the moron.

markinsac said...

The guy was absolutely right. Folks, the takeout on each bet averages 20%. If you and a buddy each risked $10 on a coin flip, you'd be risking $10 to win $10. At the track for the same risk, the track pays you $6 on your $10 bet. In reality, how can you beat those odds in the long run?


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