13 February 2009

HANA'S Number One Rated Track? Hint: It Isn't Woodbine

Keeneland is number one out of the 65 rated tracks. Their brass took the results pretty seriously too. Keeneland President and CEO Nick Nicholson seems very pleased that his track was rated on top:

Nice field sizes, but more importantly, the lowest takeouts in North America pushed Keeneland to the top. To put things in perspective, a triactor at Keeneland that pays $810 for a deuce would pay $717 at Woodbine, if the betting on each were proportionally the same.

If you are a horseplayer who wants the biggest bang for your buck, please join HANA, it is free.

Fort Erie Update
Tim Hudak was adamant that slots should go if Fort Erie doesn't have live races.
No slots and no racing at Fort Erie would make the racetrack almost worthless. The land can't be worth that much if Woodbine sold it for $10 and the transfer of a $3 million debt just over 10 years ago.
'The Ontario Racing Commission (ORC) appeared before the Standing Committee on Government Agencies Tuesday.' I watched most of it on TV (channel 67 on Cogeco). Rod Seiling seemed to be optimistic that racing would happen this year at the Fort. Only he knows what he knows.
There is a lot of quiet optimism happening right now. Is a deal imminent? Will Fort Erie be saved?

Also, OHRIA will probably be getting more power soon and take away some of the pressure from the ORC. But if they think that they can go ahead and campaign against what they call "illegal offshore betting," good luck to them.
OHRIA, WEG, and every other racing entity in Canada had better learn that their days of monopoly are over. It is time they compete for the bettor's action.

Andrew Beyer Gives Maryland Hell For Raising Takeouts
'Executive 1: "The economy is killing us. Customers are deserting us. Our business is terrible. What are we going to do?"

Executive 2: "I've got an idea. Let's raise our prices!"

Executive 1: "Raise prices! Brilliant!.....

....Whenever I visit tracks in other countries, I observe the relationship between the takeout and the health of the sport. Gambling-mad Hong Kong and Australia produce per-capita wagering that dwarfs the United States. Their takeout rates are around 16 to 17 percent, and in both places I met pros who bet astronomical sums and make a lucrative livelihood beating the game by a couple of percentage points. By contrast, when I visited Argentina last spring, I did not hear of a professional horseplayer in a country with a rich horse tradition. The takeout rate of 28 percent made serious betting impossible. Somewhere between 17 and 28 percent is a crucial tipping point.'

New York Breeding Program Finally Paying Dividends
Hey, don't they have state bred claiming races? How come Ontario doesn't?

Maryland Rejects Magna Entertainment's Slot Proposal
H/T The Paulick Report

Speaking of Magna and Frank Stronach, this is one of the funniest pieces having to do with horse racing that I've ever read:
Economy Hits Magna: Stronach Announces Jockey Layoffs
'Magna CEO Frank Stronach announced in a teleconference held yesterday that the latest cost cutting measure by his beleaguered racetracks and company will include the layoffs of jockeys.

“The economy has adversely affected out bottom line at Magna, and we are forced to make some tough decisions, including the layoffs of all jockeys at our tracks as of Feb. 18,” Stronach said.'

Read the rest:)

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