Great Stuff!

I  was reading the latest online edition of Sporting Post  and I suddenly realised what an admirable job all of you at the Sporting Post are doing. I think that your all round coverage from racing to breeding is excellent and help us keep in the loop on a global scale as well.

One thing I urge you not to forget and that is to utilize all the tools at your disposal to empower owners and punters as well as lovers of the game to fight against those who are plundering the sport for their own agendas as well as those people who live off the sport of kings without making any contribution whatsoever. Racing is a Sport and not a lottery
I read somewhere that the industry as a whole employs over 100,000 people. There is therefore a great responsibility to keep our racing strong and healthy. I actually choke when I hear those number crunchers at Phumelela call our sport a “product”. Racing unlike the casinos does not promise riches and millions. Those self -same bean counters should also remember that even the ice cream punters at the totes would not be in the rooms if it were not for local racing bringing  them there in the first place. The crunchers also maintain they need a race every 10 minutes to keep the ice creamers happy. Perhaps they are correct as the majority of them don’t even have books, don’t study form, don’t watch the parade or canter past. In actual fact the ice creamers do not even need coverage as such  as the race itself is of no interest to them.

The crunchers also declared the other day that they have to do something to speed up objections as they interfere with their product . Dear me!

It is thanks to these same crunchers that we now have to endure 35 to sometimes 40 minute breaks at lowly midweek meetings to accommodate their overseas product which is so important to them. Yes we get bored because of their programing.

Which then puts us in the position to see who is being catered for and not. Are the owners, trainers, race card carrying , form studying punters being catered for. No! Ice cream punters . Yes!
I am sure that the Sporting Post has a moral duty to help protect racing in this country from being destroyed by the powers that control it if only by the fact that it has the power to be heard.
Just look what has happened to the sport without us even realising it was happening and now we look back and with horror as say this shouldn’t have happened.

Action: Milnerton  a track conveniently situated for everyone with historic importance as a track was sold.
Result: The Cape is left with one fast decaying and eroding  racecourse, Kenilworth which, because of their own land sell off and the holy frog, cannot be developed any further.
Durbanville a bush track suitable mainly for low grade racing with no prospect for future development.
Funny how both remaining Cape Tracks have their finish post before the grandstand to minimise the racing experience.

Germiston: The fastest  track in the country  with a beautiful cambered bend. Gone
Newmarket: Professional intimate racetrack with a unique “dogs leg’’ 1300 meter and the toughest 1200 meter straight in the country. Perfect evening facilities with family lawn embankment and wonderful corporate banqueting for fun evening meetings without traffic snarls or concern for personal safety. Gone
Vaal : a track or trek in the bush an hour from JHB. Straight mile beautiful grass good for the winter months. Today has inside unfair sand track split the straight to make two tiny courses with maximum 12 to 14 runners depending. Condition today desperate
Turffontein: Premier track supposedly for premier venues. Now has a nasty inside track where draws are paramount and luck of running crucial. Field limited to 12 to 14 depending. Main track also has field limitations  at certain times. Venue:  Perceived generally as unsafe destination at evening times, inconvenient  traffic wise, overly large venue with little or no atmosphere because of its lack of intimacy especially at night.

Greyville: Magnificent course steeped in history . Doubt even Goldcircle could cock this one up.
Scottsville : Another split in two bush course where only the greedy and the needy go to race. A short  Group 1 Sprint season is it’s 15 minutes of fame. A schlepp to get there and worse to go home after a bad day at the office. Notice that Currie cup cricket is rarely played in Maritzburg.
Clairwood : Another magnificent racetrack steeped in tradition. The only anti clockwise and testing track in Natal. Soon if the wizards at Goldcircle have their way to succumb to gelding and be purged from the records.
Clairwood, Scottsville? Scottsville , Clairwood? You pick . Any moron would know after looking at the history of Gauteng and Western Cape and learning without feeling the pain from their mistakes what is the right thing to do. Yet make no mistake the Wizards at Gold Circle will get rid of Clairwood and who knows if they get a chance Greyville as well.

So here are the type of things that Sporting Post needs to fight for through the mouthpiece. Besides the visuals and commentary from TellyTrack and having a betting company like BettingWorld control racing in this country, have you ever known a bookie that wants you to win?

When I asked a senior executive about the programing schedule he referred me to Phumelela as Phumelela holds the licence and dictates the programing to all concerned. Perhaps we as owners and or even trainers should take a leaf out of our friends at the Trade Union’s book and garner mass action to get what is required out of racing for the sake of the sport as a whole. Imagine all owners / trainers ceasing  to nominate their horses until changes are made. Phumelela who is quite content to merely living off other peoples droppings will see it is not that easy and will be forced to act or be replaced .

Sporting Post carry the banner and lead the way.

via email – Bill Jacobs

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