Dennis Drazin

Monmouth Appeals to Racing Commission to Amend Whipping Rules

With new regulations regarding whipping set to go into effect throughout the country on July 1 when the Horse Racing Integrity and Safety Act (HISA) takes effect, management at Monmouth Park has asked the New Jersey Racing Commission to adopt the more lenient HISA rules when the meet opens May 7. The story was first reported by the Asbury Park Press. At the start of the 2021 meet controversial rules were put in place by the New Jersey Racing Commission that banned the practice of whipping horses to encourage them...

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Daily Average Handle Down at Monmouth; Whip Ban To Blame?

Total all-sources handle at the Monmouth Park meet, which wrapped up Sunday, Sept. 26, showed an increase, hardly a surprise since this year's season included 11 more cards than the 2020 meet, which was shortened due to COVID-19 issues. Monmouth didn't fare nearly as well in the more relevant category of daily average handle. During this year's 55-day meet, average daily handle was $3,154,748, a decline of 17.13% over 2020 figures, when the average handle was $3,807,082. The 2020 Monmouth meet consisted of 44 cards. The decline begs the question:...

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The Week in Review: Sports Betting May Not Be the Enemy After All

Despite COVID shutdowns, a total of $21.52 billion was wagered legally on sports in the U.S. in 2020, about twice what was bet on horse racing, and the gap will be even greater this year and for years to come. Sports betting is growing exponentially and an argument can be made that some of its success is coming at horse racing's expense. It's surely siphoning off dollars that otherwise might be available to racing's pari-mutuel pools and it has to be drawing existing and potential customers away from racing. Yet,...

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Saratoga's Racing and Gaming Conference Set to Return

After a two-year absence, the Racing and Gaming Conference is back. The two-day conference will kick off Aug. 16 and will be held in the 1863 Club on the grounds of Saratoga Race Course. With the goal of examining industry trends and challenges facing the sport, the conference was known for bringing together notable industry leaders from across a wide spectrum, including racing officials, regulators and politicians. This year, more than 40 gaming and racing industry professionals will participate in 14 sessions as speakers and panelists throughout the two days....

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NJ Commission Won't Commit to Request for Whip Rule Clarification

The accident and disqualification of the winner in last Saturday's GI Haskell S. at Monmouth Park has rocketed to the top of racing's recent controversies, chiefly because of the polarizing role that New Jersey's newly implemented anti-whipping role may or may not have played in the stretch-run spill. Since the start of the 2021 meet at Monmouth, whipping a Thoroughbred has been strictly prohibited, except for the express purpose of ensuring the immediate safety of the horse or rider. As three horses battled for the lead in the stretch...

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BetMakers, Monmouth Offer $1-Million Bonus to Haskell Winner

BetMakers Technology Group, in partnership with Monmouth Park, will sponsor a $1-million bonus to a horse that sweeps this year's GI Haskell S., GI Runhappy Travers S. and the GI Breeders' Cup Classic. Authentic (Into Mischief) earned the inaugural bonus, which, due to the pandemic, included the Haskell, GI Kentucky Derby and Breeders' Cup Classic. "We're thrilled to sponsor the BetMakers Bonanza again after the enormous effort by Authentic last year," said Dallas Baker, BetMakers' New Jersey-based Head of International Operations. "We're fully committed to supporting the U.S. racing...

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Purse Increase, Dates Added at Monmouth

Officials at Monmouth Park have announced an across-the-board increase in purses to begin on Haskell S. day July 17 and have added three live September dates on Fridays to the calendar. "We're thankful to Gov. Philip Murphy and to the leadership in the state Senate and Assembly who continue to support racing in New Jersey," said Dennis Drazin, the Chairman and CEO of Darby Development LLC, the operators of Monmouth Park. "A supplemental appropriation was passed and signed into law, and with rain preventing us from writing more races...

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Dennis Drazin Talks Eventful Monmouth Meet On Writers' Room

While the 2021 meet at Monmouth Park is less than three weeks old, several years worth of drama has already been packed in at the Jersey Shore staple this spring, and Wednesday morning, the track's chairman and CEO Dennis Drazin joined the TDN Writers' Room presented by Keeneland to discuss it all. Calling in via Zoom as the Green Group Guest of the Week, Drazin talked about the fraught implementation of the New Jersey Racing Commission's whip ban, the latest attempt by the Jockeys' Guild to put pressure on Monmouth...

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Monmouth's Dennis Drazin Joins the TDN Writers' Room

Dennis Drazin joins this week's TDN Writers' Room in the midst of an eventful meet at Monmouth Park due to ongoing whip rule controversy. The CEO of the New Jersey track discussed news regarding the Jockeys' Guild end to insurance coverage for Monmouth riders and more.

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Guild to End Insurance Coverage for Monmouth Riders

In a June 7 letter, the Jockeys' Guild informed its membership that, starting July 1, Monmouth Park jockeys will no longer be covered by Guild insurance policies. The Guild has been providing temporary disability benefits, life insurance and Accident, Death and Disability benefits to those who have chosen to ride in New Jersey. The Guild has been adamant in its belief that racing has become more dangerous at Monmouth Park because jockeys are no longer allowed to encourage their mounts with the use of the whip. In the June 7...

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Monmouth Handle Down; Are Whips To Blame?

Because of the pandemic in 2020, six-race cards on Fridays and a run of rainy weather to start this year's meet, apples-to-apples, year-over-year handle comparisons aren't easy to come by at Monmouth. But all indications are that the Jersey Shore track has gotten off to a poor start, and that raises an important question--are bettors staying away because of the new rules that prohibit whipping? Sunday's card was the first of the meet where all the scheduled races were run on the turf and there was not an abundance of...

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Lopez to Join the Monmouth Riding Colony

Cory Moran, the agent for top Monmouth rider Paco Lopez, informed trainers Thursday by text that his client will begin riding at the meet June 5. Lopez's status had been up in the air as he was considering his options in the face of new rules instituted at Monmouth that ban whipping. Some riders have said they would not ride at Monmouth because they felt the whip ban created unsafe racing conditions. Lopez will not be riding at Monmouth this weekend, but that is because he has prior commitments to...

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