Saturday, July 12, 2008

HANA Mission Statement

Our mission is to unite as many bettors of North American tracks as possible in order to speak with a single, more influential voice to the various entities that currently, but uncooperatively, control horse racing. This includes track management, horse owners, ADW management, and all levels of government.

The sport we love is dying primarily because each of the above is trying to increase its own share of every dollar wagered by horseplayers. The net result is that the game is not only becoming increasingly less competitive with other forms of gambling, but also difficult to enjoy because our ability to participate, our convenience, and our satisfaction are of no concern to those in charge. The recent congressional hearings made it clear that, while it is our money that drives the game, we have no say in how it is conducted.

We want to change that.


HANA’s Goals

Our immediate goal is to recruit as many members as soon as possible. The first step was the construction of this website; initially funded by a group of concerned members of the racing forum.

To continually encourage participation in HANA, our founding principles are:

1) Membership will always be free and never require more information than a valid e-mail address to participate
2) Ideas and opinions will always be welcome, and we will attempt to respond to every productive e-mail we receive.
3) Operating funds required for advertising, off-line communication, etc., will be voluntary, and a full open accounting will be provided to members quarterly.
4) Anyone wishing to expand their support and/or involvement will be able to engage individual staff directly.
5) Keep membership advised of organizational developments as frequently as possible
6) Survey membership regularly to keep our goals and priorities in alignment.

Upon achieving our immediate goals, we will pursue tasks including:

1) Maintain a ranking of horseplayer-friendly tracks for wagering consumers.
2) Continue to inform horseplayers of the problems that exist within the industry, and formulate strategies for addressing them.
3) Petition the various Other Industry StakeHolders (OISH)
4) Establish a dialogue with OISH
5) Report progress/problems in addressing HANA’s concerns with OISH
6) Exert collective influence as appropriate.
7) Encourage increased participation in the game as well as increased handle through horseplayer-friendly treatment
8) Support the establishment of a central governing authority over the racing industry that includes direct horseplayer representation.

The following sequence of issues reflects HANA's current priorities:
1) Effect a reduction in direct takeout to uniformly lower levels at all tracks or else allow ADWs and tracks to rebate competitively.
2) Make it possible for every in-home bettor to bet all tracks from a single account at his ADW vendor of choice.
3) Support the institution of uniform rules of racing including medication use policy
4) Establish a central governing authority for the industry to effect uniformity of rules and their enforcement, to ensure cooperation among tracks, and to create and maintain a customer-friendly environment for both offtrack and ontrack bettors.
5) Institute IRS withholding reform
6) Maximize the number of races that can be viewed "live" without conflicts.
7) Incentivize breeders to emphasize soundness and stamina over speed and precocity.
8) Provide the public with greater transparency regarding the physical status of each entrant.
9) Eliminate the arcane practice of breakage.
10) Promote an overhaul of the parimutuel systems employed to ensure the integrity of the pools.

Please keep in mind that HANA is a volunteer operation, and that while we value any contribution of ideas and funding that will strengthen our collective influence with OISH, we will only accept donations and fees (if required) from horseplayers.

We will not be representing any commercial or governmental interests, tracks, racing associations, ADWS, horsemens' groups, breeders' groups, or even other racing/equine fans who are not bettors.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for using a picture of Keeneland, my all time favorite track. I know Saratoga has the reputation, but no track treats fans better than this beautiful jewel. I encourage anyone who enjoys racing to go there and have breakfast at the backside cafeteria, watch the morning works, and bask in the love of horses. I saw a large group of youngsters trooping into the track my last time there, and eventually realized it waz a school field trip! This is a place that reveres our sport.