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Old 06-07-2020, 09:01 PM   #1
dilanesp
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cj discovers Santa Anita 5 1/2 on the turf races are shorter than 5 1/2 furlongs

I mean, this is just outrageous.


Not difficult to believe that the same organization that puts on the 7 1/2 on the turf races at Gulfstream does this too.
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Old 06-07-2020, 09:31 PM   #2
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Big thread on twitter this week about how horse racing missed an opportunity to Promote itself while it had the sports stage to itself the last 3 months.

Horse racing should look internally. Its been promoted & people don’t like what they see.
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Old 06-08-2020, 12:14 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by dilanesp View Post
Not difficult to believe that the same organization that puts on the 7 1/2 on the turf races at Gulfstream does this too.
Almost every time a track decides to run a new distance, they screw it up somehow and it is almost never customer friendly. Track layouts should pretty much dictate the distances tracks run but it some a few tracks are never happy and want to try new gimmicks. Hell, Woodbine even tried running races in the opposite direction for some unknown reason and of course couldn't time the races worth a damn. There are countless examples, like GP and LRL both adding 1 1/16m races that are awful for a 1 1/8 mile track. Monmouth added a small chute to run 5.5f turf races and still can't time them with fractions. Santa Anita is the latest, and worst, example I can think of at the moment. I've heard of running about distances, but to also have an "about" opening 1/4 without telling people is disgraceful.

I'm actually a little embarrassed I didn't catch it sooner. I knew something was screwy but it was tough to pin down since they move the temp rail around so much.

Last edited by cj; 06-08-2020 at 12:16 AM.
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Old 06-08-2020, 12:43 AM   #4
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Big thread on twitter this week about how horse racing missed an opportunity to Promote itself while it had the sports stage to itself the last 3 months.
Except....people were panicked and beside themselves with a pandemic/virus...I know it's easy to forget that nowadays...plus 30-40M had lost their jobs...

So...advertising on TV "come lose the rest of your money at the track...hey...we're still open!" probably would have led to an outcry to close whatever tracks were still open...at least IMO...so it was probably best not to brag...

People who wanted to bet knew racing was still going...you don't really need to advertise when you're the only game in town...word spreads...
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Old 06-08-2020, 11:43 AM   #5
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It would be good for racing if SA were to shut down and just go away..
This is the most amateur mnor league track out there, after GP of course.
What is it about the Stronach tracks that incompetence has been institutionalized at them?

High school track is far more professional that SA is.
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Old 06-08-2020, 11:49 AM   #6
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Andy Beyer wrote me this morning and he found some races where the 1/4 mile is only about 40 feet short, not 80. It took a little work, but my guess is that is how short these races are. What is happening is whoever turns on the Trakus system is supposed to do it when the gate is sprung, but they are pretty inconsistent with doing so.

This causes distance to be "lost" from the race. They still are short, but sometimes they are timed with no run up and 40 feet, short, other times with 40 feet of run up and 80 feet short, and all sorts of combinations in between.

This causes wild variation in the fractional and final times and makes them completely unreliable. Unless you take the time to video time the races like I do, they cannot be reliably compared to each other even if run on the same day.
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Old 06-08-2020, 12:02 PM   #7
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Here are a couple images to show what I'm talking about. In Race 1 on May 23, timing started here. I calculate this by subtracting the official final time from the time on video when horses hit the wire:



For the race on Saturday, timing started here:



It doesn't look like that big a deal, but at that point in the race where horses are just getting started, it is in the neighborhood of two full seconds. As I'm sure most know, that is the difference between G1 horses and NW2 LT claimers.
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Old 06-08-2020, 12:06 PM   #8
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It's hard to believe tracks still can't time races correctly and aren't either using no run up or consistent run ups for every race (preferably consistent for every track) to make the timing of the races meaningful. It's bad enough we have to deal with the impacts of wind, weather changes, and track maintenance changes on top of the impacts of pace on time, but they can't even get the times right.
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Old 06-08-2020, 12:09 PM   #9
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It's hard to believe tracks still can't time races correctly and aren't either using no run up or consistent run ups for every race (preferably consistent for every track) to make the timing of the races meaningful. It's bad enough we have to deal with the impacts of wind, weather changes, and track maintenance changes on top of the impacts of pace on time, but they can't even get the times right.
I see something similar at Gulfstream with the short run up for mile dirt races, but not to this extreme. Anytime there is a short run up Trakus has big problems on a consistent basis.
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Old 06-08-2020, 12:12 PM   #10
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It would be good for racing if SA were to shut down and just go away..
This is the most amateur mnor league track out there, after GP of course.
What is it about the Stronach tracks that incompetence has been institutionalized at them?

High school track is far more professional that SA is.
It really does seem that Gulfstream and Santa Anita do the most little things to inconvenience the horseplayer. Times are a little (or way) off, distances are a little off, post times are a little (or way) off. They think it's no big deal I guess, but they're just the kind of things that serious players notice and grate on their nerves.
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Old 06-08-2020, 01:30 PM   #11
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Sheesh just go back to 'about 6.5f' down the hill! I abhor 5.5.

And don't sass me about the dirt crossover. They run 10f where they have to engage the crossover and I haven't seen any fall over and go boom.
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Old 06-08-2020, 04:25 PM   #12
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On the issue of these 5.5F T races, CJ and I have exchanged emails on the topic and we are working with others on the issue.

On a somewhat related note, on this topic and others like the marketing comments, I'm not privy to a lot, but I based on my 25 years of experience in the industry, there are usually serious discussions about many of these issues.

However, it's not in anyone's interest to share anything publicly until something has happened. There's absolutely NO upside in this. That doesn't mean it's not happening, but I see a decent amount written suggesting just that and it's not true.

For example, let's say there was a certain distance/surface/rail setting combination at a track in which the rail setting or run-up was wrong and was for a while. Someone points it out, via social media or email, to me or CJ or someone else. It usually gets to the right person. Maybe one to three weeks later the charts have all been corrected and the speed figures re-run with the new information and there are steps in place to avoid the error in the future. There would have been no point in mentioning it prior to that, just like there would have been no point mentioning the meetings that took place prior to the recent marketing announcement which had to have taken place as multiple entities were involved as were big bucks.

That's why I try to remind everyone, especially on the Fractional Time Errors thread, if you see an issue in a chart, send me a PM or email to feedback@equibase.com to my attention. At the least I can promise it will be looked into.
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Old 06-08-2020, 05:43 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by ubercapper View Post
On the issue of these 5.5F T races, CJ and I have exchanged emails on the topic and we are working with others on the issue.

On a somewhat related note, on this topic and others like the marketing comments, I'm not privy to a lot, but I based on my 25 years of experience in the industry, there are usually serious discussions about many of these issues.

However, it's not in anyone's interest to share anything publicly until something has happened. There's absolutely NO upside in this. That doesn't mean it's not happening, but I see a decent amount written suggesting just that and it's not true.

For example, let's say there was a certain distance/surface/rail setting combination at a track in which the rail setting or run-up was wrong and was for a while. Someone points it out, via social media or email, to me or CJ or someone else. It usually gets to the right person. Maybe one to three weeks later the charts have all been corrected and the speed figures re-run with the new information and there are steps in place to avoid the error in the future. There would have been no point in mentioning it prior to that, just like there would have been no point mentioning the meetings that took place prior to the recent marketing announcement which had to have taken place as multiple entities were involved as were big bucks.

That's why I try to remind everyone, especially on the Fractional Time Errors thread, if you see an issue in a chart, send me a PM or email to feedback@equibase.com to my attention. At the least I can promise it will be looked into.
This comment doesn't surprise me! Why does this industry hide things constantly? I am glad this board and others on social media have made it clear the ongoing issues to the wagering public and not wait for a weeks long response.

Equibase cant even get their damn carryover page right and yet we await a properly timed race weeks later? No thanks.
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Old 06-08-2020, 07:23 PM   #14
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Sheesh just go back to 'about 6.5f' down the hill! I abhor 5.5.

And don't sass me about the dirt crossover. They run 10f where they have to engage the crossover and I haven't seen any fall over and go boom.
There's a HUGE difference between galloping over the dirt track early in a leisurely paced 10 or 12 or 14 furlong turf race, and speeding and skidding over it with 1/4 mile to go in a sprint.

The dangers were known for more than 30 years. River Drummer broke down on the dirt crossing in the 1980's. When there was another breakdown in the San Simeon last year, at the same spot, they had to act.

Last edited by dilanesp; 06-08-2020 at 07:25 PM.
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Old 06-08-2020, 08:12 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by dilanesp View Post
There's a HUGE difference between galloping over the dirt track early in a leisurely paced 10 or 12 or 14 furlong turf race, and speeding and skidding over it with 1/4 mile to go in a sprint.

The dangers were known for more than 30 years. River Drummer broke down on the dirt crossing in the 1980's. When there was another breakdown in the San Simeon last year, at the same spot, they had to act.
It has been shown that the 6.5 hill races have catastrophic incidents at a statistically significant higher rate than your average race. I have no problem with them going away if that can't be changed.

What isn't cool is replacing them with a distance they can't measure or time properly. That isn't fair to bettors.

Last edited by cj; 06-09-2020 at 12:09 AM.
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