As we turn the page from the zeros (I have no idea what the 00's are called) to the 10's I have a horseplayer list that I really, really, really want to see addressed in 2010. Yours may be different, so please let us know below in the comments section below.
Here are my 11 things I would like to see in 2010.
* I really, really want to see stewards inquiries explained to us, on camera. I got home one night last year and I flipped on racing in the middle of the night to see what was happening in Australia. The lights were flashing and there was a steward, on camera, chatting with a jockey. It was covered like a blanket. Another afternoon I flipped it over to Chester Downs in the land of harness. I saw a steward going through his decision on the air. I want to see that at every track in North America in 2010.
* I really, really, want to see a track (not some tiny track, but a big track) offer a takeout reduction with teeth. And I want it to run for a long while, none of this two week business. As Bill, HANA board member says: "It's like telling a fat guy (I wonder how I thought of this) that good diet and exercise is needed for the best health. Now that guy can either come back in a month and say, well I've tried it and I'm still fat and unhealthy and hungrier than before (similar to industry dropping takeout for a bit to "prove" that it won't work) or he can change his lifestyle and come back a year later after proper diet and exercise being as fit and healthy as ever. Long lasting change is needed with lower takeout to fix the industry."
* I'd really, really like Teri Hatcher to join HANA. She is a horseplayer, and I like Teri Hatcher.
* I'd really like our fellow horseplayers in Arizona be able to bet a race over the internet, without wondering if the cops are going to bust down their door saying "drop the mouse, now!"
* I'd really like to see TVG drop the per wager fee thing. For gosh sakes guys you have grown a huge internet betting company on low fees and low takeout. Get rid of it.
* Speaking of TVG, I would really like to see Matt hit like 14 pick 4's in a row. It would make some headlines, and people on Paceadvantage.com would stop calling him names.
* I'd really like to see Philly Park management (or management at any track in PA) take 12 nano-seconds of slot profit and buy a horseplayer a coffee.
* I'd really like to see Twinspires, when they finish taking over Youbet, keep the good stuff Youbet has been doing for horseplayers, and not just swallow up their customers like a whale does plankton.
* I'd really, really like to win more photos in 2010. A few more inquiries would help, too.
* I'd really, really like to see HANA Advisory board member Cary Fotias speak his mind. In his interview in the Saratogian: "And I think vet stats should be published. We all know what’s going on, and the chemists are ahead of the testing labs. If you’re gonna juice horses, let us in on who is doing it." C'mon Cary, tell us what you really think next time.
* I'd really like to see the odds board at one minute to post look somewhat similar to what it looks like at the second call.
..... and I would like to offer my best wishes in 2010 to horseplayers everywhere. Happy New Year everyone.
We'd like to see this HANA-thing grow more in 2010. You can help by signing up here.
This opinion piece is from a HANA member. If you'd like to have your say, or want to add to this list, please do. We are available at info @ hanaweb.org. We want to hear from you.