"Racetrack managements are discussing new wagers with a lower takeout to help turn around the handle decline. Owens said the TOC has been accused of blocking such experiments.
“That is not true,” Owens said. “What we did do is ask for an analysis of it so people could sit down and think about it. They came forward with data. We got assurances that it would sell, and we said, 'Godspeed and good luck.' We’re partners with the racetracks. Anything that is responsible that will improve the business has to be examined.”
The obvious question is: Why would the TOC ask for an analysis of a takeout decrease or new bets to "sit down and think about it", but a takeout increase was passed with zero study and to raucous applause?
Is it any wonder why some horseplayers have no faith in California leadership and are responding by staying away from their product?
Read more at the Bloodhorse.
My experiences with the TOC in the past have been rather dismal. The majority of the money I spend on the sport is as an owner and I feel that they do not value my finanical contributions to the sport. Consequently last time voting came up I did not even bother to waste the stamp. It seems that the TOC is not concerned about making improvements in the sport rather only about preserving the status quo and their salaries. One million dollars to the last president for a three year contract? What a rip off. Just about anyone could do that job. How do they rationalize what they pay themselves? Why not have it be volunteer and use the money to accomplish something? I made an appointment to see said president at Del Mar to present some issues and new ideas and the guy was too busy looking at this racing form to even talk to me. But would changing to a new group make things any different? I am equally concerned that the CTHA would end up making the same minimal efforts once they are elected. What will be different or better about the CTHA besides having lots of trainers running it? In general why don't these organizations make more of an effort trying to grow the pie? Try attracting new fans with an ambassador program at each track. Why don't they make ownership more appealing by certifying and promoting the good commercial stables that are legit? Instead these organizations continue with the same minimal efforts year after year, seemingly satisified with the decline of the sport. My only guess is they take bettors and owners for granted.
The mind boggles.
Nice job (ugh) by the TOC in terms of the product they present to the wagering public at Golden Gate Fields. Never seen so many five and six horse fields. Their field size has to be the lowest (worst) in the nation. They continue to race four-five days a week when they should be racing two-three days at the most. Mr Owens claims to represent No Cal.??
How could any serious player wager a quarter there on such a diseased product ?? I quit playing Golden Gate long before the ridiculous takeout hike.
Thanks for the thoughtful comments. California racing has many problems, and they need to be addressed, as you all allude to. Let us hope they move in the right direction soon.
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