9 September 2008

Fort Erie's Owner In The News; And Not In A Good Way

El-Ad Properties Being Sued By Condo Buyer In Alleged Bait And Switch

El-Ad's lawyer of course is calling the lawsuit frivolous.

Who is El-Ad? Nordic Gaming, the owner of Fort Erie Race Track is a wholly owned subsidiary of the El-Ad Group.

Nordic Gaming is still attempting to pull one over with the ridiculous $300 million Fort Erie project. A project which could never be feasible in a million years. I've speculated that Nordic is just trying to enhance the potential price of the race track while this project is on the table.

Nordic is hoping for two things. One, that the government is stupid enough to go ahead with the project and lend them most of the money to do it. Or two, that someone is stupid enough to come along and overpay for the track on the basis that this project could very well be a reality.

Just last month, El-Ad postponed a $5 billion project to build a casino in Vegas.

They have also had the loan repayments postponed too. The investment bankers loaned $1.25 billion to buy the land where the new resort is supposed to be built.

'The decision comes as a slumping U.S. economy and much tighter credit markets have caused other developers to reassess the need for more hotel capacity in the gambling corridor.'

The government of Ontario needs to come in and put an end to the Nordic smoke and mirrors project by stating the obvious: This project makes no sense and is completely not feasible. This will force Nordic to price the track realistically, or turn the track into a giant parking lot. And no, I don't want to see that latter.

Ideally, Woodbine should buy back the track. There are many horses who just can't run on Polytrack. Also, Fort Erie is the only Ontario option for horses who can still run, but have been devalued because they either ran through their conditions, or injuries and/or age have slowed them down.

If not Woodbine, an ownership group that wants to build horse racing.

But Nordic hasn't given a rats ass about racing, and Fort Erie is barely staying alive right now under their ownership.

No dates for next year yet? 65 makes sense to me. That being said, I do hope they get dates and stay open for next year.

Harlen Abbey's latest column on Fort Erie. Read about Sandspit and Bad Boy Will.

Rescue horse Mister Man, makes it to the track.

There is a rumour that someone well connected to the horses in the Fort Erie area that were deemed to be malnourished was right back in the sales ring at the recent Woodbine CTHS sales as a buyer.

CTHS Sales Numbers Keep Declining

The CTHS reported 149 horses sold for $5,495,287 ($5,830,500 Canadian), an 8.5% decline from last year’s select session. Average declined 2.4% to $36,881 ($39,131 Canadian) and median declined 15.6% to $25,448 ($27,000 Canadian).

Buy-back rate was reported as 30.4%, compared with 27.1% a year ago.

Optimism that Ontario bred bonuses would boost sales turns out to be empty promise.

Ontario racing needs state bred claiming races badly. And they need to get rid of that rule where you claim an Ontario bred and then lose the right to the full purse offered. Again, this only creates less owners less partnerships. Owners that could very well show up at a future sale.

Keeneland sales also down significantly this year.

Rahy's Attorney Is Now Four For Four Going One Mile

I know I called the Woodbine Mile a two horse race. Of course, my third choice won.
Slade Callaghan is a terrific grass jockey. He ranks right up there with Chantal Sutherland, Patrick Husbands, and the very hot Jono Jones when it comes to riding on the E.P.Taylor Turf Course.

Buyback record broken at Keeneland Sales

$7.7 million wasn't enough for the owner of Azeri's first foal.

Deweycheatumnhowe (was he named after the harness racing industry?) finally lost, but 3 year old filly Mya Tri won her 21st race in a row and remains undefeated.

Racing Form's Formulator Web gets great review

I've yet to try it. I like to stick with the 50 cent forms (per card) I buy from Thoroughbred Sports Network. I'm more into recent form angles and speed figures, than I am when it comes to trainer/jockey angles. I also think Beyer numbers suck most of the time.


Trainer Paula Loescher and jockey Dale Hemsley have a great chance to double up today in the second and third races at the Fort today with Can't Be Pete and Briarhill respectively. Minstrel's Honour looks good in the fourth and Shady Park should be real tough in the 5th race.
It is a pretty good card today. The last three races should be interesting as well.

Mike Newell is only 2 wins behind Nick Gonzalez in the trainer's race. Newell has a shot to close the gap with Piece of the Pie in the first, but there is lots of speed in the race which may hinder her chances. Hemsley could have a big day today.

Tomorrow at Woodbine, IF the first race is off the turf, Green Is For Go with "Ernie James" Wilson looks like a solid pick. Catch Air may pull off a minor upset in the 6th race.


Anonymous said...

Happiness is having an ink cartridge that I've refilled refilled about 30 times and is still working.

Anonymous said...

Very astute comments re: Fort Erie. Should be mandatory reading for ALL the gov't officials involved. Hope those same gov't officials have enough guts to finally terminate all discussions on that FE project.

Anonymous said...

Anyone who thinks that Beyer numbers are useless has no clue how to handicap...

Anonymous said...

RG, I have had no luck trying to refill a cartridge, but I buy online, and so far without complaints.

Anon2, I hope the government reads this.

Anon3, I didn't say they were useless, I said they often suck. Beyer figures are often way off base. TSN speed figures are much more accurate, and closer to my own figures.

Anonymous said...

I think I live in a different world than some of you guys. Pace, Beyers, bias, poly, dirt, etc. I probably never consider any of this. I've already looked at 17 races for Friday and Saturday and come up with maybe 4 horses for consideration. My only criteria is trainer intent and price. I only look at trainers who have a history of getting prices and if I think today might be the day I assume they have taken everything into consideration. I have never forgot Anthony Quinn in the movie Black Gold, "sometime first horse last and last horse first."

Anonymous said...

A little tip RG
refilling cartridges
too many times will
result in the cartridge
breaking and ruining
your printer.It happened
to me and I had to buy
a new printer.


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