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Old 04-28-2022, 06:44 PM   #1
Thomas Roulston
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Why Not 16-Horse Fields?

At Meydan - and formerly, Nad al Sheba - they use a 16-horse gate.

Why can't we import 16-horse gates from them - like we imported the 20-horse gate now used in the Kentucky Derby?

Since the 60-foot-wide Tapeta track at Gulfstream can accommodate 12-horse fields, it logically follows that any course (dirt or turf) that is at least 80 feet wide can accommodate 16-horse fields.

And then an also-eligible list of up to 20 horses can be maintained, essentially guaranteeing 16-horse fields in many races, unless there is an off track (or a less-than-firm turf course).

Don't larger fields mean more handle?

It might even be possible to pay back to 4th for show bets in fields of 15 or 16 - as is done in the UK.
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Old 04-28-2022, 06:52 PM   #2
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Forget the gate...where you gonna get the horses from?
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Old 04-28-2022, 07:10 PM   #3
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In half of the races at Belmont today, there were 16 horses entered.
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Old 04-28-2022, 07:54 PM   #4
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The average field size in North America is less than 7½ entries.

https://www.jockeyclub.com/default.a...ion=FB&area=10

Belmont today, # of horses that ran by race.
1. 07
2. 06
3. 07
4. 08
5. 10
6. 09
7. 06
8. 08
9. 12
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Old 04-28-2022, 08:04 PM   #5
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But how many were scratched?
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Old 04-28-2022, 09:28 PM   #6
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There were only three races that originally showed more than 12 entries. One had 13 entered, scratched down to 8. One had 14, scratched down to 10. And one had 16, scratched down to 12.
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Old 04-28-2022, 09:30 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Roulston View Post
In half of the races at Belmont today, there were 16 horses entered.
Some of those horses were main track only.
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Old 04-28-2022, 10:25 PM   #8
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My question...

Why can't we have 8-horse fields?
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Old 04-28-2022, 10:34 PM   #9
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Quote:
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My question...

Why can't we have 8-horse fields?
When you have more races than horses, trainers wait for a softer field. They know they have 6 bullets a year to fire on a horse. They figure why waste one of those on a tough field if they can fiend a softer one. We need more horses and fewer races to run them in.
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Old 04-29-2022, 12:14 AM   #10
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My question...

Why can't we have 8-horse fields?
Too many tracks and not enough horses? Not a large enough fan base to support that many tracks?
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Old 04-29-2022, 02:26 AM   #11
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Too many tracks and not enough horses? Not a large enough fan base to support that many tracks?
It was just a wishful thinking question.
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Old 04-29-2022, 02:33 AM   #12
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We get 16 entries, we split it to two 8s!
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Old 04-29-2022, 02:52 AM   #13
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Marty? Marty McFly? Is that you?
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Old 04-29-2022, 05:06 AM   #14
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IMO, Belmont is THE meet of every year.

16 horse fields. Pfft. Belmont just runs what precious flesh will go into the gate and it is typically more than 8.

I love Belmont.

Saratoga may have Belmont on glam and gliitz, but Belmont delivers on the best turf racing in America.
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Old 04-29-2022, 10:05 AM   #15
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Considering field sizes, I'm thinking of selling a 6-horse mini-gate to tracks. Dude on a moped could pull it around instead of the tractor, saves thousands in gas money.

Another idea is Match Race Monday, use all the ready horses on the grounds and have 50, er, 25....well, maybe 15 one-on-one battles. The moped guy could just wave a (white) flag, which saves even more gas money (though not sure a flag is in the budget, might have to raise takeout).

See, two more useful ideas to save racing.
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