Some action on the blogosphere and some racing news this past bit.....
Bloodhorse reports that Calder is cutting their stakes, and handle has been lower than a snakes belly this year:
Calder Race Course will not hold any overnight stakes through the rest of its meet that ends Jan. 2, 2009.
Calder began its 2008 live racing season April 21. In its latest quarterly report to the Securities and Exchange Commission, parent Churchill Downs Inc. said total handle at Calder was $397 million through Sept. 30—31% lower than the $574 million for the same period in 2007.
Calder’s net pari-mutuel revenue fell 24%, from $59 million in the first nine months of 2007 to $45 million in the first nine months of 2008. Part of this year’s decline is related to contract disputes between Calder and the Florida Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association.
Amid contract disputes, Calder cut average daily overnight purses by 30% April 22. It restored those cuts July 7. But on Sept. 12, it cut average daily overnights 17% from $180,000 to $150,000.
Blogger looks at the recent fall in revenues in the News industry:
“The complacency stems from having enjoyed a monopoly--and now finding they have to compete for an audience they once took for granted."
That quote is about the news industry but can be paralleled to racing he thinks. Further:
We are not there yet. Not even close. Look at the current ADW fight in the US, or with recent horseman and track fights in Canada - they are shutting out racing customers as almost an afterthought, like they do not matter. Worse yet, we have the greatest medium to grow this sport we arguably have ever had and they can’t figure out what to do with it, except squabble over percentages. The monopoly will not die, eventhough the fork has been stuck in it for over ten years.
I don’t think horse racing as a betting sport is obsolete, not at all. Actually it is tailor-made for the internet. The folks in charge just have to find a way to make sure that they find a way to grow back the bond and trust with their customers, and exploit racings reach by pricing properly on the web. If they do not, I fear we will be a footnote of wagering history.
Trackmaster blog looks at ADW and mentions HANA. "ADW wars a Lose Lose Situation"
Blogger looks at racing revenue and casino revenue. Conclusion: Our lack of foresight in changing our product and delivery has us getting our asses kicked.
NOTE: HANA will have a statement about the resolution at Hollywood as well as where the group thinks we should go next. We will post it as soon as we can.
NOTE II: Thanks to Hajck Hillstrom. His series on "Why I Left Racing" is well received and members are finding it interesting. It is nice when we have members who take time out to help us at HANAblog. It is nice to have Hajck aboard