Members: Make sure you check your email and vote!
Many members of the press have come out saying fans and bettors should have a vote for Horse of the Year. That is neither here nor there (the year end votes and banquets are put on primarily for horse owners who spend piles of money and spend plenty of time buying horses who they hope do well, and it is their night), but it got us thinking: Who would you choose as HANA members?
From our survey in 2009 we learned a great deal about you. You are horseplayers who follow this sport religiously (for the most part), but about 25% of you also own, train, groom, write for racing blogs or papers, work for tracks, and much more. In addition, you are addicted to racing. 44% of you play or watch the races three or more days a week. 75% of you have been watching racing for "20 or more years". About one in ten are true and pure fans - you bet less than $500 a year, and the majority of you bet less than $5000 a year. But we have a good many players who play more than $50,000 per year too. In total, you bet like a small army, and represent piles of eyeballs on almost every race, everyday.
In other words, we think it's a great mix of fans and bettors for a poll.
We have looked at some votes on the web regarding Horse of the Year, and they seemed to be open to anyone. As Jessica Chapel on her blog noted today, Zenyatta is one popular racehorse with almost 60,000 fans on Facebook (some votes show her getting 90% or more on web polls!). We thought allowing only HANA members to vote, we might get a pretty true result on how horseplayers, big, small and large, and industry watchers who are very passionate about horse racing feel about this years big vote.
Thanks to everyone for voting. We'll have the results up in a jiffy.