6 February 2009

It Was 40 Years Ago Today.....

It Was 40 Year Ago Today....
'Feb. 7, 1969: Diane Crump became the first woman jockey in America to compete in a parimutuel race when she finished tenth of 12 aboard a 48-1 shot, three-year-old Bridle n Bit, in the seventh race at Hialeah Park.' Also, on May 2nd 1970, Crump became the first woman to ride in the Kentucky Derby. More about Crump at her web site.

This leads to the documentary Jock The Movie. It is all about the history of female jockeys. To watch a very interesting trailer, click here and click archive when you get to the site.

I never had a problem betting on female jockeys. I was 19 when Valerie Thompson was the top apprentice in Canada. She completely owned Greenwood. And I remember cashing a lot of tickets on her during her apprentice reign.

Woodbine Give Fort Erie Trainers A Bit Of A Break

Woodbine has been granting temporary stall space to Fort Erie trainers, though they've been turning down applications for trainers who want permanent stalls in the 2009 season. They are playing it on the premise that there will be a 2009 season at Fort Erie.

It will be interesting if there is no season at the Fort. That would mean there is no such thing as a Fort Erie trainer anymore, not that it says "Fort Erie trainer" on the ORC license anyway.

News on the Fort
Not much to report, except a new article that states the Province in working hard to save horse racing (in Fort Erie). Click the link and watch the video showing George Smitherman's remarks.

I don't get "But the industry has to do it's part to make horse racing an attractive and financially viable form of entertainment." Woodbine can't even do that, nor can any harness track in Ontario. How does Smitherman expect Fort Erie to financial viability? Without slots, Ontario would be doomed, as the racing execs don't have the foggiest clue when it comes to competing for the customer's buck.

Since when does financial viability have anything to do with horse racing in Ontario?

Note to Smitherman, just give Fort Erie an extra 7.5% for horsemen and Nordic each from the slot revenues, and quit grabbing air. It is the only answer at this time, barring a miracle where Nordic decides they will sell the place for fair market value.

Ontario may make it tough on Super Trainers

The Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency will begin testing for regulated anabolic steroids in horses beginning June 1, the agency recently announced.

'According to the agency's manager of veterinary services, Dr. Mike Weber, the testing program is being launched in June to give trainers and veterinarians time to adjust to rules that only allow for the therapeutic use of four anabolic steroids: boldenone, nandrolone, stanozolol, and testosterone. Like almost all U.S. racing states, the Canadian regulatory agency recently adopted rules banning all but those four anabolic steroids, which are permitted to be used only at least 30 days before a race.'

I'm not sure who is more nuts: California or Maryland?

Normally, I would put these stories at the start of my blog post, but the idiocy that goes on with horsemen groups and racing execs seems to be a daily event as they continue to drive the game to new lows.

We are in a recession. A big one. And racing interest and fans have been dwindling way before the economy turned to crap. Put on the news, and you'll likely hear one or two stories about stimulus packages. An economic stimulus plan in the real world is when consumers are encouraged to spend money. You know, like when taxes are decreased or other incentives are given by retailers (buy a car and get a fee trip to the Caribbean, where the trip is sort of a rebate to the consumer).

I'm not sure if racing gets it, but the bettors are the consumers. Racing execs, if you are reading this, write it down BETTORS ARE THE CONSUMERS.

So lets see how racing's top vizuzus stimulate betting:

Questions Raised on California Rebating

This was put on Bet America's (an ADW in North Dakota) web site:
*** Special Notice about our Santa Anita January Rewards ***
Our right to carry racing on Santa Anita requires that we receive the consent of the race track and of the Thoroughbred Owners of California, the horseman’s group at Santa Anita. The Thoroughbred Owners of California notified us this week that it is their policy not to allow any marketing incentives on a California thoroughbred race track in excess of 2% of the amount wagered. As a result, we have reduced our January Santa Anita Rewards promotion from 3% to 2% for the balance of January.

Why does the TOC care if an ADW rebates to its customers 2%, 3%, or 12% ????? California gets its signal fee cut no matter what the ADW gives back to the customer. What is with the anti-stimulus package that will result in less revenue for California horsemen bottom line?
Is the TOC (or one or two of its high up members) protecting Elite Turf Club and RGS which rebate between 10-12% on California racing? Is he protecting other ADWs like Youbet or XPress Bet which choose not to rebate most players more than a couple of points?
How does California monitor whether Elite or RGS is giving rebates to only those who bet over a million each? And again, why does it matter?
Something stinks (if it walks like a duck, and talks like a duck, it is usually a duck), but getting back to reality, this does nothing for the average consumer who might bet where they get a bigger rebate (therefore ignoring California), and lets not forget, the bigger the rebate, the more likely the player will continue to be a customer.

See also Pull The Pocket: No Sales Allowed

Now for some more maddening bs:

'(The Maryland Racing) Commission granted a request by the Maryland Jockey Club to raise the takeout on two types of wagers, the Pick 3 and the Pick 4, from 14 percent to 25.75 percent.'
All I can say is that HANA is growing, but just not quite big enough YET. If we were, I could see us formally boycotting Pimlico and Laurel. I do think most of the members will do so anyway.

Is it any wonder why racing is dying in North America, but it is growing in Britain and Australia?

For more on this topic, Pull The Pocket once more. Also, ThatsAmoreStable.net sums up the decision to raise takeout in three words, Stupid Stupid Stupid

Just another reminder, the reality series Jockeys will debut on Animal Planet in Canada Saturday at 9:00 PM. Richard Eng calls the first show riveting.

North America's top 20 bettor friendly countdown continues.

Bloodhorse has picked up the Top 10 Countdown

HANA continues to grow quickly:) Sign up if you haven't already (it is free). You could also check out the HANA store and order something. We could use the dough to steam roll ahead.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for that fantastic history lesson.

I've been a big follower on women in the sport, and am never nervous to bet on a woman. Ther eis no reason at all that they can't be just as good as the male jockeys, and it is surely only a lack of opportunities that are keeping them back.

Chelsea said...

Lovely history lesson - Diane Crump played such an important role in bringing the sport where it is today. Unfortunately, due to her dedication to the sport is is basically un-insurable and is currently overwhelmed with medical bills after being involved in a horse-related accident where she sustained a brain injury and 8 broken ribs. Please visit www.dianecrumpfund.com to find out more.