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OP/ED Authors:

Op/Ed

Towers-Dean
Keep Customers Engaged the Old-Fashioned Way

The Jockey Club’s 64th annual Round Table Conference took place on Sunday at the Gideon Putnam Hotel in Saratoga Springs. As I usually find with this conference, the speakers were interesting and informative, and I learned something. One speaker stood out to me, however, because he shared something that I found particularly compelling. Kip Levin, [...]

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KB1
Let’s Talk About Drugs In Racing

The issue of drugs in sport has never been bigger than it is now. There have been so many performance-enhancing drug scandals in recent years that it has bred a culture of scepticism of sporting success amongst the public. Brilliant performances are immediately questioned as being too good to be true, with the trainers/coaches that [...]

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eric_hamelback2
Op/Ed: Eric Hamelback

Everyone wants what is best for horse racing and especially for the Thoroughbred racehorses that make our industry possible. That is why many of us are stunned by The Jockey Club leadership’s latest attempt to use that organization’s considerable wealth and influence to push a piece of federal legislation, not supported by the vast majority [...]

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Belmont_2016_start_tc16bs24a_rb_Horsephotos
Great Product. Lousy Product. Same Price?

The price of a new Honda Civic is about $23,000. The price of making a bet at the racetrack is the takeout, the percentage extracted from the pool before winning bettors are paid. No matter the race, the size of the field, the class of the horses running, the takeout is about 17% for a [...]

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Ben's Cat with Trevor McCarthy up wins the Jim McKay Turf Sprint Stakes for trainer King Leatherbury, Pimlico Race Course, Baltimore, MD 5.20.2016.
Ben’s Cat’s Groupies

I have had the pleasure of knowing King Leatherbury since 1976. I have been his client, his competitor and, on occasion, his co-conspirator. All of these facets were a boatload of fun. I could not have imagined that 20 years after I left the business, King would come up with a homebred gelding that would [...]

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Tote Board 5th Race Belmont Race Track 7.21.2007
High Volume Players

If you bet on horses virtually anywhere in the world today, you won’t just be competing against your fellow run-of-the-mill horseplayer or the bookmaker at the local betting shop, but against teams of sophisticated, high-tech gamblers who will be pouring millions through the windows. And guess what? They’re a lot better than you. So much [...]

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OpEd-NEW-Thornton
A Tale of Two OTBs

In the broader economy, various types of construction projects are viewed as indicators that might be signaling the overall direction or strength of the business climate. Within the past two weeks in the Thoroughbred racing industry, two relatively small initiatives made local headlines, but both have the potential to be industry-wide signposts that point to [...]

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CraigBernick-photo_newsize
TDN Op/Ed: Craig Bernick

Since Hollywood Park closed at the end of 2013, all of California racing has suffered. Attendance and handle have declined despite two historic crops of 3-year-olds and a good amount of world-class racing. In 2014, Derby and Preakness winner California Chrome, champion Shared Belief, and Breeders Cup Classic winner Bayern made enormous impacts on the [...]

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Ferguson-Sheikh-Mohammed
Analysis of Godolphin Restructuring

Judging by what has been done and what has been said, Sheikh Mohammed’s decision to consolidate his racing and breeding operations under the Godolphin banner conveys a restlessness with the status quo. It remains to be seen how it will differ from a rebranding exercise. In the press release which announced the restructuring on Godolphin’s [...]

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KB
Op/Ed: Should In-Foal Mares Be Declared?

Following on from my piece a fortnight ago regarding the question of whether breathing operations should have to be formally declared, it is perhaps worth having a similar discussion about the common question of whether it should have to be declared when fillies/mares are in foal whilst still racing. It is a debate that arises [...]

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