Jerry Bossert, writing in his The Day at the Races column in the Daily News, calls NYRA out for skipping Wednesday's spill on its replay show.
"It was a judgment call on a particularly scary-looking spill," said John Lee, spokesman for the New York Racing Association.I have to say that I have mixed feelings about this; I think both sides have a point. The replay show is not a news program; it's a presentation of the days' races by NYRA, which owns and controls the content. So I think they certainly have a right to make a judgment call based on what they see as good taste and decency. (I'm assuming here that there was some kind of explanation of the omission.) I haven't watched it myself, and would have changed the channel if I knew it was coming up. Besides, as Bossert said, the video is already out there for people to see; I can't imagine that NYRA could be naive enough to think that their skipping it would possibly mitigate its spread. If anything, it probably encouraged some people to go and seek it out.
The NYRA is afraid of the video being used by groups such as PETA for their gain or for television stations that never show horse racing except for spills.
But in this day and age, the video is already out there. You can watch the spill at youtube.com.
Other racing jurisdictions practice this, but NYRA never did until Wednesday. It is wrong for the sport to try to cover this up as it unfortunately will always be part of the game.
What will the NYRA do next? Stop showing the races live until it gets a chance to edit them to its liking?
But on the other hand, I think Bossert makes a valid point regarding the question whether if it's OK to edit out a spill, then what else is OK? And that: "It is wrong for the sport to try to cover this up as it unfortunately will always be part of the game." So I'm going to take a pass on passing judgment here; feel free to weigh in.
- Construction of the new Concord and Monticello Raceway is on hold. Developer Louis Cappelli has been pretty upfront about the difficulties in raising money presented by the present financial environment....that as opposed to Delaware North and the state with respect to Delaware North. Despite that, Cappelli had been putting up a brave front. But he's issued conflicting statements of late, and now concedes that he doesn't have the money to proceed.
The developer said he's waiting before resuming construction on the Entertainment City hotel and racino resort until he locks down $1 billion. That means workers aren't likely to be back soon.
"I have $550 million dollars spoken for," Cappelli said in an e-mail Thursday. "Can't start yet because we don't meet the legislative hurdle of $1 billion dollars."
Cappelli and partners need to invest $1 billion to reap the benefits of a state tax deal that would pay tens of millions more from the video lottery terminals at a new racino.
Cappelli says he has partial financing, but the plan is to suspend construction while he climbs the considerable hurdle of selling $400 million in IDA municipal bonds during times when the bond market is horrible and gambling resorts are going bankrupt. [Recordonline.com]