January 2013: 8.16 avg field size 20,808 total runners 2,550 races January 2014 7.86 avg field size 20,586 total runners 2,619 racesI think the TimeformUS guys gave him keys to the database (I am not sure on that, but my spidey senses tell me so), so oftentimes the Crunkster tweets out items of interest. Things like field size, handle, handle per racetype, and more.
— o_crunk (@o_crunk) February 2, 2014
Anyhow, this tweet prompted other tweets regarding data-mining.
Why is it that @o_crunk puts out faster and more relevant stats than horseracing official database @Equibase from @jockeyclub ?
— Ray Paulick (@raypaulick) February 2, 2014
I don't want to pile on Equibase and the Jockey Club with complaints about this. They do what they do and I think Jim Gagliano and Hank Zetlin do have racing's best interests at heart (along with the fact they are pigeon-holed in a system that generates revenue to do other things) and I do like them both.
But the point that others have made for a long time; people like Jessica and Robin and Dana and Dan and Ocrunk and even Bacon, through articles on his site, remains
If this data was free and easy to use would there be 100 O_Crunk's using it and tweeting about it? Would there be others outside racing, learning the betting aspect of racing and talking about it by building their own database? Would that growth in betting and interest trump the revenues it brings in to the Jockey Club and Equibase?
We'll probably never find out, but it is a question that has some validity, in my opinion.