13 August 2008

Horse Racing Lacks Proper Disclosure

Some other thoughts regarding horse racing and disclosure, a topic I touched upon over a week ago here:

Why is it that when you visit a racetrack's website you can't find information on track takeout? It can't be that it isn't important, the DRF has a page devoted to each racetrack and takeout information is shown. Just one page per track, and takeout takes up around 20% of the script.
Check out the DRF description for Woodbine.
Now try to find takeout information at Woodbine's own site. Thousands of pages are there, and not one that I know of, that gives information of track takeout on their own product. I even tried to do a "takeout" search there......no luck.

Does this mean that a track can change the takeout, and if it escapes the media, the player may not be aware of it for months? The answer is yes. Hardly one peep was mentioned when Woodbine changed their takeout back on Win 4's back from 14% to over 25% a few years ago. I didn't realize it for at least 6 months.

I'd figure, in Canada especially, that racetracks would be REQUIRED to disclose takeout information on their websites. Does anyone give a hoot about the consumer anymore?

Lets move on. What about thoroughbred suspensions and fines. If not at the Woodbine site, where again, I can't find any links to recent fines and suspensions, how about the ORC (Ontario Racing Commission) site? They do have a pretty good resource called the Officials' Lists where one can find the Vet List, Stewards List, Procaine List, and the Cryoanaesthesia and Nerve List. But where can I find recent suspensions and fines?
I tried, I really tried. But I came up empty.
Apparently, they are shown in the Racing Form, and the on track programs. But we are in the information age. Why can't we get this kind of information by just making a couple of mouse clicks? I don't want to depend on the media to inform me of whipping or drug violations. I recently read that Chantal Sutherland was appealing her 4th whip violation of the year. The fact that I didn't even know about the other three is a big problem.

This funny blog post from Turf Luck is getting lots of attention: Love's Labor...lost It seems that a blogger's love affair with Mountaineer race track is like Adelaide St. in Toronto....it is a one way street.

Oregon ADW numbers: Most individual ADWs are up, but the total money bet through Oregon was down thanks mainly to the closing of IRG, and possibly a decline in total betting across North America. Related: Handle down at Arlington Park.

Jeff Klenner: Racetracks should encourage dialogue between racing execs and track patrons.
"One of the things that I, as a track manager, used to do at the end of the race day was to position myself outside the main exit prior to the running of the final race on the card. Then as the crowd filtered out after the race, I would smile to people and thank them for coming—almost as if every one of them were a visiting dignitary who had been sent a personal invitation to attend on that day."

Update: Pull The Pocket Has A Must See Post Post; How Does Offshore Wagering Help? The answer is that it doesn't, but the big question is why offshore wagering exists in the first place?

Don't forget to join the Horseplayers Association Of North America, if things like high takeout rates bug the heck out you. We are starting to make some strides.

Article on rookie trainer Willy Armata. Sad news: 10 year old Very Professional dies of an apparent heart attack. He wasn't coming close this year. I was questioning why he was still racing.

Racing UK pull plug on Youtube Videos More stupidity from a dysfunctional industry.

Woodbine Bias Report: Speed and the rail suck big time (though the rail wasn't bad on Sunday). Chantal is hot hot hot, while trainer Alex McPherson is riding out a slump. Constant Montpellier hasn't hit the board in 17 races and Steven Bahen hasn't been in the winner's circle of late.

The Dart Board
If What So What looks like an immortal cinch in the first today at Woodbine. I expect the third to be off the turf, a race that win shy Muskwa, will be the boss.
Looks like Gonzalez might be trying to steal in the 7th with Name In Lights (mind you, the horse wore fronts for the first time, last race).

Tomorrow, go to the beach. It is one really bad card, even for a Thursday.


Anonymous said...

It apppear's Bruno Chickendance and Kevin Butterkeg have parted company.'Next.......yawn.

Anonymous said...

Hey cangamble, any idea why Mcaleney is no longer first call for Reade Baker?

Anonymous said...

i think jimmy mac has given priority to asmussen so he's slipped out of bakers barn a bit. he's still getting on plenty for him though and plus jerry baird did do fairly decently for reade last year when jimmy was out so he does deserve to keep getting some mounts there.

Anonymous said...

Where can I find information on Jockeys that were suspended and the reason?

Anonymous said...

WEG puts it in the on track program I believe. Other than that, I don't think they are available online anywhere. They should be though.
In the US some track websites publish them, many don't.