PDA

View Full Version : Poll - Should horseplayers become more involved?


Jeff P
07-30-2009, 02:53 AM
I'm asking for feedback... not just from HANA members, but from everyone here at PA. It doesn't matter if you are a professional horseplayer, recreational player, occasional fan, owner, breeder, trainer, groom, track operator, track employee, ADW operator, ADW employee, tote company employee, NTRA Committee Member, past performance data company operator or employee, software developer, editor for a turf publication, turf writer, author, TV producer, on air talent, etc. HOW you are connected to the industry isn't the point. If you are reading this thread at PA you are connected to the industry in some way shape or form. I'm asking you an honest opinion if you have one.

kenwoodallpromos
07-30-2009, 04:17 AM
Just messing with you!!LOL!!
I'm for any way to lower takeout, looks like boycott only would do it. But I still do not expect that to happen. IMO almost everyone in racing who works in racing or owns a horse is opposed to takeout lowering.
Couple the state with whoever owns the tracks and that is your enemy. Meanwhile, target races to bet where the opposing bettors make the worst choices (tracks that highest average payouts and Ca fairs which are not plubber/Protapolycush).

Calhoun
07-30-2009, 06:54 AM
I voted strongly agree and I wish you good luck.

But I doubt your efforts will make a differemce because bettors as a whole just do not care about the issue.

On any weekend this August, pick 4 pools at the two big meets will dwarf the pick 4 pools at Monmouth, and the takeout at Monmouth is 6% lower than DelMar and 11% lower than Saratoga.

Some might say this is all because of horse quality and the chance to hit big on a larger pool. Then again, that argument loses water when you see the Los Alamitos p-4 pools also dwarfing Monmouth.

Frankly, the best day-to-day (non carryover) takeout wager is the New Jersey
$.50 pick-5 with 15% takeout. And the pools are very modest.

rrbauer
07-30-2009, 09:42 AM
Since these polls are intended for everyone, members and non-members, wouldn't the "general racing discussion" section be a better placement for them? And, as a "sticky".

lamboguy
07-30-2009, 09:57 AM
when looking at the whole encompasing horseracing game, we must take into effect that it has drastically changed from years ago. 40 years ago there was very little competition for the gambling dollar. there weren't state lotteries and if you wanted to go to a casino you would have to make a trip to vegas or a carribean island. there was no such thing as simulcast. if you wanted to bet horses you went to your local racetrack or bet with an illegal bookmaker.

today you can sit home and bet almost anything you want on the internet. there is no need to go to a racetrack. most importantly racetrack operators have lost their captive audience and now need to do some type of inovative work to get people into the game instead of sitting on their asses and smoking cigar's all day.

the question comes down to this is hanna a good thing for racing. i believe it is something that racetrack operators should pay attention to in the year 2009. they are making the problems of the game pretty clear to understand. the real big question lies in whether the operators will listen or do they really care what the fan has to say?

Calhoun
07-30-2009, 12:43 PM
[QUOTE=lamboguy]when looking at the whole encompasing horseracing game, we must take into effect that it has drastically changed from years ago. 40 years ago there was very little competition for the gambling dollar. there weren't state lotteries and if you wanted to go to a casino you would have to make a trip to vegas or a carribean island. there was no such thing as simulcast. if you wanted to bet horses you went to your local racetrack or bet with an illegal bookmaker.

today you can sit home and bet almost anything you want on the internet. there is no need to go to a racetrack. most importantly racetrack operators have lost their captive audience and now need to do some type of inovative work to get people into the game instead of sitting on their asses and smoking cigar's all day.

the question comes down to this is hanna a good thing for racing. i believe it is something that racetrack operators should pay attention to in the year 2009. they are making the problems of the game pretty clear to understand. the real big question lies in whether the operators will listen or do they really care what the fan has to say?[QUOTE]

What the fan has to say.... To me, the only way fans speak is with their wallets. As long as fans pour money into large take pools, that action speaks way louder than emails to track execs and internet polls. I do agree it is a fight worth the effort but I'd aim more resources at the bettors as opposed to the "they don't care about their customers" race track executives and states.

Pacingguy
07-31-2009, 07:06 AM
As I mentioned in my blog, talking just to track management does not seem to work. For those tracks that have slots, many are not overly concerened about the success of racing because they are making money; if live racing disappeared they would actually be doing better. Many horsemen refuse to give up any of their VLT share because they don't know how long the good times will last and want to keep every dime they can get. They don't realize by not willing to invest some of their slot revenue, they are hastening their demise.

In states which do not yet have slots, it is time for groups like HANA to start speaking to legislatures thinking of introducing VLTs to have them mandate a portion of the slot revenue be dedicated to reducing takeout. I am not saying the takeouts in this experiment need to be cut 10-15 percent, but at least five percent. Explain to them how the state will actually benefit from increased churn. Tell, them if they don't want to make it permanent, try a three or five year experiment where if the track and the state doesn't break at least even on on track wagering by the end of the time, the money goes back to the track and horsemen.

The tracks and horsemen are not telling people about this. In a newly released study in NJ where they talk about introducing slots, there is reference about reducing the cost of racing but only on the industry's side; not the customer. The customer is still not being considered.

DeanT
07-31-2009, 01:41 PM
Pacing Guy,

HANA has lobbied looking for a crux for horseplayers. It is a long road, of course, but we have been proactive on trying to educate both horsemen and legislatures that slots deals have not been effective in helping racing, and that any new ones should have the player considered. As well, although we think slots are simply a band-aid, but a political reality, and since slots can be good if the deal is structured right, we have looked for political holes to get our message through. I wish more could be done, but it is a start that we are trying to be proactive on.

From the blog, for example, during the slots debate in Kentucky. In this letter we tried to strike three chords: Slots should have a horseplayer component, raising takeout would be suicidal for racing in KY, and the horseplayer needs representation and needs to be heard in these matters.

PS: Member feedback from a well known poster here made a plea with some passion for us to get on this. He was 100% correct so we have been speaking more and more about these issues on the blog and in dealings with racing.

To: Gov Steve Beshear
700 Capitol Avenue, Suite 100
Frankfort, KY 40601
Tel: 502.564.2611
Fax: 502.564.2517

Cc: Sen. President David Williams
702 Capitol Avenue, Annex Room 236
Frankfort, KY 40601
Tel: 502.564.3120
Fax: 502.564.0456

Cc: House Speaker Greg Stumbo
702 Capitol Avenue, Annex Room 303
Frankfort, KY 40601
Tel: 502.564.2363
Fax: 502.564.7178

Dear Sirs,

The Horseplayer Association of North America is a grassroots organization which was incorporated in September of 2008. In a short nine months, the group has grown to 1200 members representing tens of millions of dollars of annual wagering handle. We would like to make our thoughts known regarding the status of Kentucky racing, and what we think you can do to help.

I am sure you have heard from many of racings insiders – trainers, owners, track executives, feed men, vets and more. We are different. With us you are hearing from racings customer: The people who fill the stands, watch racing, live racing, and breathe racing. We represent racings demand side revenues.

As you well know, a trip to Keeneland in the fall or spring, to Louisville in May, or a night out at Turfway on a cold January evening is what your state is about. It can be argued that Kentucky racing is not just a sport, or a game to gamble on. It is a slice of Americana, and we want to see that continue. Not for a year, or ten years with band-aid solutions, but for generations.

With the state of horse racing in 2009, the business feels there are only a couple of ways a jurisdiction can add additional revenues: By alternative gaming, or increasing taxes. Kentucky takeout rates are some of the finest in the nation. Raising them, or taxing horseplayers will not result in an increase in business. This has been proven time and time again in all types of gambling games. The jurisdictions with the lowest takeouts have done well, while those who continually nickel and dime the horseplayer, have not. In the UK when taxes were taken off sports betting, sports betting grew. In Australia where a 6% takeout pick 6 was instituted, racing grew. In Singapore when lower takeouts were experimented with, racing grew. In Hong Kong, who lowered rates recently, it plugged the losses. The Horseplayer Association of North America believes raising rates in your state will simply be another nail in the coffin.

Because it is not politically reasonable to restructure betting in those ways in your state at this time, that leaves us with alternative gaming. It is no secret what slots have done to your horse population and handle, with adjacent states offering slots fuelled purses. You no doubt can recite the statistics by memory. To compete with these states, Kentucky must have some form of alternative gaming, and we urge you to pass such a measure, for the good of the sport in your state.

Not only will this narrow the gap between yourselves and adjacent states, if done correctly, a slots program built for the 21st century can allow Kentucky to stand up and be beacon to other racing jurisdictions. With past slot deals there has been a tremendous amount of money placed into the supply side of the equation – racedates, purse increases and so on. However, little has been placed on the demand side – cultivating the racing customer, through takeout breaks, player rewards, and increased demand side infrastructure. This has not made racing economically viable as a long term betting proposition and slots have been simply a band-aid. With a properly written slots deal between the state, the tracks, the horseman and the customer, we think Kentucky can be a world leader in racing once again. You are in a unique position where you can use empirical evidence from other jurisdictions to write a far better long-term deal, which can be a benefit to all, and grow the sport of racing.

As you have heard from many in racing based solely on supply, we will end this by speaking of what it means to be a customer of racing in your state. Making a trip to Keeneland for horseplayers is pure magic. One is treated with respect and knows that it will not be their last visit. The same goes for a trip to the Red Mile in the fall for fans of that sport, or Derby fans in the spring at Churchill. It can be argued that meets such as those, do more for the goodwill and word-of-mouth marketing for your state than any television commercial, or any ad campaign could ever hope to. Kentucky is racing, and racing is Kentucky. As horseplayers we want to keep it that way. We urge you to work with racing to implement alternative gaming, and do it in the right way. If you make it so, you can ensure that the words “Kentucky” and “racing” are inexorably linked forever.

Sincerely,
Horseplayers Association of North America