Tuesday, February 7, 2012
Davidowitz Sounds off on California Racing
But real leadership requires courage; real leadership requires the ability to admit a mistake and correct it as soon as the law will allow. So where is that leadership? Where are all the people who profess the desire to straighten out Cal racing and push it once more to the top of American horse racing?
Consider: Purses were artificially inflated by the takeout increase to no noticeable gain in field size, or in gross wagering handle.
In fact the reverse has proven true as the "Players' Pick Five" has demonstrated repeatedly via larger than expected handles on that bet while others have stagnated or declined.
More evidence has been piling up on both counts, yet the voices for reason in high places remain silent. It is mind boggling, frustrating to observers and horseplayers alike.
CHRB Board Members who stand idly by while nothing is done deserve to be challenged by horseplayers, responsible media, California track owners and government officials. The TOC is only part of the problem. They have gained what their agenda said they wanted to gain. But their experiment with higher takeouts has failed.
From this vantage point, strictly as a horseplayer whose handle was about 50 percent directed to So Cal racing and now is restricted to a much smaller percentage of play and in fact mostly towards Pick Sixes with $250,000+ carryovers, this much seems true: California Racing is acting like it has six shooters pointed down at its feet. Give it enough time and all of its toes will be gone. Time is not your ally in this.
Show some real leadership. Use your best people with your best ideas. Do something constructive.
Some of us out here are rooting hard for any of that to occur.
Steve can be reached at Gradeoneracing.com