I just spent the weekend in Saratoga. And I'm writing it up, I promise. But I'm finding it really hard to do it justice. If you EVER have the opportunity to go up there for a day (45 racing days would be preferable...) take full advantage of it.
I'm really curious what the FoxSports1 racing coverage will look like. With a declared emphasis on the wagering side of the game, there are a multitude ot tacts they could take. There's the TVG PICK6 YEEEAAAAAH! take on wagering. There's the NBC Triple Crown experts picking winners take. There's the HRTV's The Player take with a touch on wagering strategies. I'm not sure where the right answer lays there, but I really hope they don't go for the TVG approach. The publicizing of the big Pick 6 payouts are great, but no casual or new player is EVER going to hit one. Attracting new players is just as much about helping them decode the sport as it is about getting them to cash tickets. While more experienced players (like
me JP) take little solace in cashing a 1-5 winning ticket, pointing new players towards likely winners, not just likely prices, is probably a good direction to start. Cashing tickets is fun.
But on that note, that means that FS1 is going to have to have a ADW partner, else they're never going to promote a wagering location during the broadcast. Commercials will (hopefully) be plentiful and well aimed for the various ADWs, but without a "and you can place this wager online right now at [insert ADW here]" following a series of picks, it may be all for naught. As of right now, I've neither heard nor read about any ADW association with FS1's coverage.
While I really would love for Wise Dan to take a shot at the Classic, I've hedged my previous stance of "Take a Shot!" back towards the more sensible "Win ALL OF THE RACES". I really feel that Dan, whether or not he truly goes down as an all-time great (and I feel he truly could if he were challenged), he is a truly exceptional specimen and as a 6yo I should enjoy him as much as possible. Seeing him this past weekend own his competition in the Fourstardave was a real treat, seeing him up close in the paddock was a thrill, and experiencing his campaign over the past two years is an absolute honor. I'm going to stop complaining about Mr. Fink's race choices.
Thank you Breeders' Cup for reading all of my comments and following my advice on calling the Distaff the Distaff again. Female horses are not Ladies, the name made no sense.
Mr. Phipps' threat to seek Federal race day medication legislation is a very bad idea. I think I either heard or read somewhere that there are 17 states that are flat against uniform regulation. But how many of the 17 actually matter? Does Colorado's or Oregon's or Michigan's (and I'm just listing smaller racing states, not necessarily the states that oppose the regulation) opposition really matter? If New York, the Mid Atlantic medication union, Florida, Kentucky, California, Illinois, and several of the bigger one important track states (Arkansas, Louisiana, etc) sign on to a voluntary set of regulations, why does it matter that Les Bois Park in Idaho doesn't comply with the same regulations? I don't mean to marginalize the smaller tracks, but if all or most of the big ones get on board, won't everyone quickly join as well?
Saw on the Paulick Report (originally from the Racing Post) that Mr. Tabor bought a significant interest in the winner of the Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot. No Nay Never (Scat Daddy) is pointed at the Group 1 Prix Morny on Sunday at Deauville, France. Can't help but root for the American invader.
Really looking forward to this weekend. Unfortunately, I have some work-related social engagements on Saturday, so I'll be in and out. But it will definitely be an amazing day of racing.