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It's got to be fair on everybody

Monday, 20 May 2019

"Excellence is not a skill. It is an attitude."

Ralph Marston.

09_Garrel
Garrel Glen

It’s an overcast morning with a very funny sort of temperature. It is quite muggy and looks like it is going to rain, but I don’t think we will be seeing any of the wet stuff anytime soon. We just had a few showers over the weekend which has only dampened the dust and the ground on most courses is on the fast side of good. I hope racecourses don’t overwater as I have always said it must be fair for everybody and the trainers with fast ground horses should be able to make hay while the weather is like this. We have been using the Farm / Rubbing House canter all morning and everything has gone smoothly. We will be having runners on quite a few days this week, especially if the ground comes our way. Let’s hope it does.

69_Walking
Walking back to the yard

The big news of the weekend is that the Levy Board announced they were £17m down on income and it looks like it will affect prize money if nothing is sorted out. We have always had a problem with our funding and the bookmakers have always got away with as little as possible. In my opinion the only way to make it fair is to put a figure on every transaction, i.e. every bet, whether it is in the shops or on the phone / computers. That would bring in far more than we are getting now and be fair to everybody. We wouldn’t keep getting told it’s because all the favourites won at Cheltenham or that there were six blank days. This financial decision needs people with brains and determination, plus our MP’s need to understand the seriousness of the situation. If not, the ownership numbers will continue to reduce and get very concentrated with a small group of participants which would then be very off putting for the general public.

12_Stud
At the stud

There’s an interesting article by Lee Mottershead today where he talks about the racing at Newbury at the weekend and how the commercial requirements of a racecourse need a pop groups to attract the paying crowd. The number of racecourses which are now staging music nights has grown unbelievably over the last 10 or so years and the courses rely on this income to keep them going, or make them even more profit. They cannot fail to make money with the media rights deal and when they run music nights, it is even more. The big problem, and Newbury is one of the worse for this, is that prize money doesn’t go up and it is all done for the shareholders, not for the good of the sport. I can’t see this changing in the near future and everybody who loves horses will have to put up with it.

59_Geece
The geece at Dullingham with their young