After a disasterous couple of weeks at NYRA, on the heels of a disasterous run at Churchill, there ain't been much good to talk about. And the response, so far at least, doesn't amount to much.
It's a sport that says it has data to make these tough decisions. Here's some of that data:
Here is the relative risk ratio for US racetrack fatalities:— Performance Genetics (@Perf_Genetics) August 27, 2023
RR = 1 means that track does not affect outcome
RR < 1 means that risk of fatality is decreased by the track, so a "protective factor"
RR > 1 means that the risk of fatality is increased by the track, so a "risk factor" pic.twitter.com/H2nUvPVKzE
That data is not the right kind of data, so the sport looks for other data that fits better, or something.
There's plenty of data on lowering takeout to increase handle and make the sport more popular. In fact, Magna, or whatever we're calling it these days, certainly has some. They're the home of Elite Turf Club, which hits everyone right in the face with their massive volume with lower takeout.
There's also the same set of data that shows increasing purses to be much less effective to increase handle.
I'm sure Kentucky Downs has seen that data. Hell, the above even came from a university in Kentucky.
Then why did they cry poor and increase takeout while increasing purses?
Matt wrote a piece about the issues at the Spa for the DRF last week, and this line caught my eye.
It's 4th and four from your own 38 with three minutes left down 8. The data guys have run the numbers; they've placed them into a real time algo, and it shows a clear answer: Go for it.
If you're the sport of horse racing, you do what you always do. Ignore the data and punt.
Have a nice Monday everyone.