We are very encouraged about the racing press here at HANA of late. Often times, horseplayer issues - especially those which might bring up some skeletons in racings closet - are put on the backburner. However, not this time.
Bill Finley was a no brainer. He has been a champion for this business for a long time. He wants to see takeout move closer to optimal so purses are maximized and handle is maximized. It was nice to have him aboard.
John Pricci was another who we expected support. He is an advisory board member and has offered us sound advice and help when we need it.
Bill Christine writes an article. "In honor of flagging business, Santa Anita will raise its prices, something that they couldn't have learned in Business 101."
Equidaily has the items front and center - both the pro and the con, linking people with ideas. We want to hear all ideas, from everyone who wants handle to grow in the long term.
Ray Paulick, although it appears he wanted to write a "pro high takeout" article showing this takeout hike is good from more than CA horse owners, added to the discussion here, and it did not turn out this way. The comments section reveals some of racings dirty little secrets.
It seems that some ADW's will not be paying full price for the Cali takeout increase - why would they need special deals if this takeout hike is so "wonderful for everyone"? And there are some rumors that some areas aren't paying anything at all. Why would they pay less than what players are paying? Who's in charge, customers or Bob Evans and the CHRB? If it's the latter, it might explain why our business ain't doing so hot.
After all, Sam Walton said: "There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else."
I am pretty sure he did not mention the CHRB being in charge, although I guess it is up to horseplayers to prove Mr. Walton right or wrong.
Last up: Your comments. We have been receiving them via email, and on chat boards. We have seen your signups on our database. We have also seen you add your name to our email list via that medium. We will be tabulating all emails, names and addresses and we will be contacting everyone before January 1st. If you want to help, or lend your name, please do so on Playersboycott.org by signing up (its confidential!). Or send an email to email@example.com
John Pricci, in a comment on Bill's piece said things quite well:
And the industry types will sit around and blame it on all the negative publicity the sport has gotten, never looking in the mirror.
We, the players, have the game’s best interests at heart, not those that draw a paycheck from it.
I’m waiting to read a piece from Alex Waldrop on the pros and cons of a boycott so that this takeout-rise madness will stop and, indeed, lower takeout becomes the rule and not just a promotional tool. In the meantime, players must support those tracks that show they have our best interests in mind.
We appreciate and respect each and every one of you who have offered support!