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Saturday, December 25, 2010

Happy Xmas!

Another column about the California boycott that I'm not completely in sync with is the one by Steve Davidowitz. While in favor of the boycott in principle, Davidowitz argues that this is not the right time; that the movement should wait until wagering patterns are established to the point where the effect of a boycott could be clearly demonstrated. And, he says:

Because the handle may not be negatively impacted by anything anytime soon given that southern California players have wanted to handicap and play races on dirt for too long to suddenly abandon such plans.
That's the part I don't quite get; not saying that I at all disagree with him that this will happen. But I would question horseplayers who claim that they've been discerning enough to have avoided synthetic tracks on the grounds that the results are too undependable; but would now rush in at the beginning of this meet and pour in pent-up betting dollars on dirt races which feature horses whose only such races have come at Fairplex. It's not very discerning in my view to leap in with abandon at this point without letting some form develop. Then you're just betting on dirt just for the sake of it, and just to drive home the point that you hate synthetics without thinking more about your actions....in my opinion, anyway.

That's the kind of bumper sticker mentality that I sense from HANA on the takeout issue - either my way or the highway, brook no dissent, you're either with us or against us, and just shut up if the latter. HANA recommends that players refrain from even reading the past performances of California tracks. If those who commented on the last post actually took the time to actually read it and the past post I referred to, they'd know that I've never suggested that I'm in favor of higher takeout; only that its significance varies to different horseplayers depending upon what they're looking to get out of their racetrack experience. But there's no room for nuance of any kind, just like the Tea Party to whom I compared the group in that post from earlier in the year. California is in a bad spot right now with slots out of the question, and the CHRB sees higher takeout on exotics as a way to enhance purses, and thus attract and retain horses to fatten its fields and increase its handle. Is that a good idea? I'd say that it's not; rather, it's one borne out of the desperation of the situation. But one thing I don't see from HANA or in Finley's column is an alternative solution to the industry's immediate woes. Other than, of course, lowering the takeout, which may indeed bear fruit over a longer period of time. But unfortunately, it doesn't, in the short-term, suit an industry already reeling from declining handle in these difficult times.

HANA says they only have California racing's best interests in mind. But then, on their rambling Players Boycott site, they actually suggest that players wager on California races through offshore outlets that return nothing to the tracks, to the horsemen, to the backstretch workers, or to anyone. That's destructive and self-serving to the point that it suggests to me that they're really only interested in themselves.

- Brad Free reports that the main dirt track is fast (though the forecast calls for a 50% chance of showers tonight into tomorrow morning). No word on turf racing, which is too bad, as I'd like to focus on those races given the difficulties handicapping the dirt races that I described above. And I wouldn't mind taking a stab against Sidney's Candy (8-5) in the G2 Sir Beaufort given the soft conditions from a foot of recent rain, and the presence of the speedy Blue Panis breaking from the rail. Make Music For Me (8-1) showed much promise on the AWT at two, and in winning an overnight stakes over this course in his three-year old debut before an ill-fated journey on the Derby Trail (though he did rally for 4th in the big race). Always like to see a talented horse like this recover as he did with his win, with blinkers off, on the turf over entry-level allowance company that he was still amazingly eligible for. Interesting runner, but a big step up here; still, might be worth a shot here wheeling back two weeks later with Mike Smith, who rode him in that stakes win, returning to the saddle, though I'd want more than his 6-1 morning line. Bogie (8-1) returns from a six month layoff from a narrow loss in a G3 turf stakes; nice works, eligible to step up here. Sebastian Flyte (3-1) may prefer longer.

In the wide-open Malibu, Twirling Candy (3-1) cuts back to a sprint after faltering late as the favorite in his tough assignment against older horses in the G1 Goodwood. Surface aside, he looks like a solid choice here. However, as you may know, I'm a strong believer in the Harvey Pack mantra to never bet a favorite doing something it's never done before. Noble's Promise (5-1) is a colt who piqued my interest in the spring, and he gave a good account of himself in the Derby despite his own trainer's misgivings about his distance ability. Now he's apparently committed to the sprinting game, and comes off a solid win, on dirt and with a 102 Beyer, in a six furlong stakes at Churchill. Good tactical speed should put him in good position in this large field. Smiling Tiger (7-2) has never been out of the money, and ran quite well on dirt finishing third in the BC Sprint; obvious contender. Brad Free writes in the Form that there's a buzz for Setsuko (20-1). Although he has not raced since April, Setsuko has trained super for his race-8 comeback. This will be, however, his first sprint effort since his career debut Sept 2009.

27 Comments:

Amateurcapper said...

Alan,

Happy Holidays.

Great point about HANA out for their collective best interest. However, I don't believe they need to be the ones to offer the solution. They're merely a self-appointed lobby representing the horseplayers who agree with the platform.

They are like the breeders and owners who also have their own agendas.

There needs to be a national horse racing commission, with an elected commissioner among representatives from the players in the game (players, owners, trainers, breeders, jockeys, media, did I miss anyone?) to make the product uniform. Each group needs to understand they are part of a symbiotic relationship, not leeches sucking the blood out of a great game.

(off platform)

As for opening day, my Christmas present would be no rain to enjoy terrific racing.

I loooove NOBLE'S PROMISE in this spot. Last year I felt he was a sprinter talented enough to race middle distances at the highest class (read: LOOKIN AT LUCKY), to me clearly the 2nd-best juvenile in the nation. If intact, the field will be ultra-contested the first 1/2 mile which should set up well for his tactical run. This guy is purely a win bet as long as he doesn't go favored. As for SETSUKO, he was a striking individual last spring who may be steadily growing into that impressive frame. I also love the sire (PLEASANTLY PERFECT) trained by the subject colt's trainer (Richard Mandella) angle...SETSUKO is developing like his sire and who better to get him to a G.I than Mandella? The angle works from the dam side as well with this barn (CHAMP PEGASUS, out of SALT CHAMP). On dirt, 7 furlongs may be too sharp and he's still eligible for a N1x allowance, but he will be picking up tiring speed. I hope his talent will overcome the seasoning (on the win end) disadvantage. Lots of times, talented young horses don't realize their winning potential because they get accustomed to finishing behind horses in top races.

That leads me to the Sir Beaufort where MAKE MUSIC FOR ME could have been that colt until he won last out. If you like NOBLE'S PROMISE, it makes sense to like MAKE MUSIC FOR ME in the Sir Beaufort. The Alexis Barba trained colt was 2nd-best juvenile in California in '09 prior to the Breeders' Cup (2nd in the Best Pal and Del Mar Futurity to L@L), then was 3rd in the Cash Call Futurity. Turf, by BERNSTEIN, should be his long suit going forward in California and has produced his winning form thus far. That said, SIDNEY'S CANDY should be tough. The short price is fair from 2-1 and up. Off the Del Mar Derby he'd be 3/5 in this spot, but some are sour because he faded in the G.1 BC Mile...only three lengths behind GOLDIKOVA, GIO PONTI, and THE USUAL Q.T. (last year's Sir Beaufort winner) makes him too classy to run down. He's too much for BLUE PANIS, but if they dawdle and make it a sprint they may lead the merry-go-round. I'll go cold 5 w/ 1,8.

Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

Alan,

HANA is a group of blowhards, acting in their own poorly informed self-interests, while speaking for nobody. Horseplayers do deserve a very big voice but they sure don't get one from HANA. Need one look any further than their association with John Pricci?

The takeout discussion is a very big and important one. As more money is taken out of horseplayers' collective pockets, less money will be bet ( I know you understand churn ), and eventually all parties, including racetracks, will suffer. But, there are many sides to this discussion. The CHRB is reckless, at best, and this is a typically short sighted decision by them. But, a poorly conceived boycott isn't going to expose this, and in this case, it will only weaken the player's positiion. Is that the kind of advice a group that wants to help its supposed constituancy should be dispensing? Of course not, but that's HANA, a group that believes they speak for many, while actually speaking for nobody.

Happy holidays. Here's hoping horseplayers unwrap a better gift than HANA this year ( or some year ).

Cangamble said...

But one thing I don't see from HANA or in Finley's column is an alternative solution to the industry's immediate woes. Other than, of course, lowering the takeout, which may indeed bear fruit over a longer period of time. But unfortunately, it doesn't, in the short-term, suit an industry already reeling from declining handle in these difficult times.
***************************

There are many constructive ideas on how to grow the game that have been posted within HANA's blog. Do you read it often?

As for takeout, the ONLY way for horse racing to reverse its downward trend is to lower the takeout collectively. If that means pain in the short term, so be it. But this California takeout hike, even though it might be a short term solution (3 months maybe because of the bigger cut of the shrinking pie that is going to horsemen), is another nail in horse racing's coffin.

As for HANA's best interest. It is the best interest of horse racing that HANA is for. OPTIMAL TAKEOUT means that horsemen and tracks make the most money and that means has the maximum audience it could get.

There is a misconception about HANA's interest being big players. Most big players get significant rebates, so a lower takeout rate only means less rebates in most cases.

What HANA wants is the game to grow. To attract new horseplayers. If there is anything devious here, it is that some horseplayers want the industry to attract newbies back in the game so that winning money for those who do the work would become easier with the addition of newbie/dummy money.
But if that happens, wouldn't it be good for tracks and horsemen???

In the end HANA wants what the industry wants: Growth.
The industry obviously doesn't know how to achieve it or is too fractured to achieve it at this time.
In the meantime, trying to get a bigger share of a shrinking pie is definitely not the right solution for the mid term and long term. It is a proven failure of a road map.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Alan a boycott won't work.Things are going great,once we get the higher takeout things will improve.

Anonymous said...

When the handle drops again they'll just blame the economy anyway, so what's the point.

Anonymous said...

HANA's message has been crystal clear on the CA situation for those who take the time to read it.

- They tried the same thing (raise purses thru increases to "save the game" in CA in 2006. It failed miserably.... so don't do it again. But they have. Mistake.

- Optimal pricing means optimal profits means optimal purses. If you raise the price you lose money in the long term. so don't do it.

CA racing, which appears to be run by people who enjoy doing things that

a) They have tried before that failed
or
b) That fly in the face of even the most basic economic theory

... so HANA does not support that and asks CA racing to do the opposite, or put people in charge that dont continue to drive it into the ground.

Simple message, one that is easily pitched for or against..... unless you want to obfuscate the issue like a lame duck member of congress or somethin'

This is not rocket science we are dealing with here.

jk said...

I am against any takeout increase. I do not need to join the boycott since I rarely play Cali. The sad part is even after the takeout increase, Cali's takeout is lower than NYRA for P3, 4 and 6. Looks like I will have to boycott NYRA and NYRA rewards. Where is HANA on NYRA's obscene takeout?


Gulfstream's takeout is lower than NYRA and Cali. Looks like that is where my winter action will be, via my CT OTB account where I will get a 1% rebate.

Indulto said...

Alan,
As a fan of your blog for several years now, I’ve been impressed with your many fair-minded critical opinions and your ability to express them. For some reason, the impending boycott seems to rub you the wrong way. As a result, your sometimes accurate criticism of HANA is being used to discredit the entire boycott movement somewhat unfairly.

Several former and current critics of HANA are joining some of HANA’s leaders at playersboycott.org (PB) to address what we genuinely believe is an inappropriate exercise of power and influence by members of the TOC and the CHRB to subsidize California horsemen at the expense of players both inside and outside the state.

The biggest burden will be borne by unrebated recreational and casual bettors like myself. I happen to be retired, but the effect is as harsh on any other player with a limited and/or otherwise not readily replenished bankroll. It is certainly a disincentive to new players.

It couldn’t be clearer from the arrogant and disingenuous rhetoric from the chairman and vice-chair of the horsemen-dominated CHRB, that they have nothing but contempt for the customers and their collective intelligence. Instead of taking steps to individually or collectively reduce some of the costs of horse ownership in a down economy, the horsemen have no compunction about lowering the cost of their own risk-taking by raising the cost of horseplayer gambling. Why doesn’t that bother you?

The only effective response to being steam-rolled by the politically influential horsemen is a boycott. We’re asking for your support as fellow horseplayers to send a message to the industry, starting with its California contingent, that horseplayers can no longer be bullied and should be represented with regard to decisions that affect our participation. Is that unreasonable?

I expect that Jeff and others will take Davidowitz’s advice and get his support. We also need support from players like you and your readers. The higher rates don’t go into effect until Jan. 1 and, according to the PB website, the official start date will be sometime in the middle of January as Davidowitz suggested. So by all means, enjoy.

I'm not above above occasional win bets at the unchanged takeout rate on longshots in the Triple Crown preps, but starting Jan. 5, I’ll be concentrating on the 15% horizontal exotics at Gulfstream. I believe in what I’m doing and I hope that some like-minded people I’ll come in contact with will also become friends.

Try to think about how a successful boycott might favorably change the status quo for you as well.

Anonymous said...

Weather brutal in socal. I'm getting scared.


Dirty

steve in nc said...

A couple of points:

We all agree the takeout should be lower, not higher, and Alan's been really clear on that, so all the sarcastic passionate responses to his previous post were kind of irrelevant.

The two questions I see where there are differences, are:

1) Is the SA increase significant?

2) Is the boycott an effective/appropriate response?

On question one: I think the answer is obvious - the increase is too small to be significant, especially because it is limited to two exotic bets.

A $100 exacta will go down to $98, and a $100 tri will go down to $97. No horseplayer on earth will change the size of his units because of that difference. Any difference in the average horseplayer's ROI and in churn will be negligible.

Churn in WPS is much much more sensitive to takeout because the hit rate on those bets is so much higher. And I share Discreet Picks' frustration that breakage isn't coming into the discussion here because it routinely takes a huge cut of the profit in WPS bets.

Still, any increase in takeouts fuels a trend toward a bigger vig that hurts us and the sport.

At a certain point, it is appropriate to draw a line in the sand. Is this it? Will it work?

I doubt it. It would take a huge reduction in the pools to produce a rollback on the takeout. What are the odds of that? An ineffective boycott will reduce the activists' credibility which would be a sad thing for the long term.

Maybe my view is colored by the tanking of NYC OTB and NYRA's fight for financial survival. This is a time to worry that tracks are going to go under, so a boycott should be a total last resort for an unpardonable sin. To me, this doesn't meet that threshhold.

As a mostly NY player, I'll have no trouble complying with the boycott. And I'd welcome more CA money in the NY pools, but I can't promise you'll be happy with the NY takeout either.

Cangamble said...

Steve, the takeout increase is actually closer to 10% for doubles and exactors and 15% on other exotics.
If you wager $100,000 a year on California exotics, the cost to overcome losing has gone up from around $20,500 to around $23,000. That is a significant enough increase to me.

And even to the smallest regular customer, they will be getting back less, and this adds to the death spiral horse racing is in right now.

El Angelo said...

I agree with Alan's general point. I think what HANA misses is that for recreational players--those of us that aren't betting anywhere near $100,000 a year, and don't bet just to bet or to make ends meet--we'd take a higher takeout at a better track than a lower takeout at something like Turfway.

Figless said...

In the Malibu totally against Twirling Candy and Caracortado, unproven on and not bred for dirt.

7f might be too long for logical Smiling Tiger, especially with plenty of front end competition so will leave her out of the top spot and multi race wagers.

7f is almost certainly too short for Setsuko even while respecting the trainers history in this race and with this type of turn back. Tab for another day when stretching out despite the hype.

That leaves Nobles Promise and Alcindor, Bafferts very promising and very expensive entrant.

These expensive types rarely live up to the hype but his last effort appears legit and I am taking a shot that he is this good.

Since there is a ton of speed in this spot, need to include a turn back just in case they all commit suicide.

Rather than Setsuko going to use Assmussen's Theskyhasnolimit, who should get the first jump on that one and might just work out a perfect trip for Gomez. Has rebounded from poor efforts in the past.

Using those three in the multi race wagers.

While Sydneys Candy indeed appears very tough in the Sir Beaufort, I will spread around with Blue Panis and Sebastian Flyte, who may get a screaming pace into which he can fly home late.

Singling Switch in the La Brea, prefer to take my chances trying to beat Syd's Candy than this one, who towers over this group.

Good luck to those not boycotting.

steve in nc said...

Cangamble, you are seizing on the wrong percentage. Hhere's the DRF's paragraph:

"While many handicappers welcome back dirt, the uphill climb for bettors will get steeper Jan. 1 when the cost of exotic wagers increases 10 percent to 15 percent. Takeout will be raised from 20.68 cents per dollar to 22.68 cents for two-horse bets, and 23.68 cents per dollar for bets with three or more horses. Single-horse takeout remains 15.43 cents per dollar."

So when that $100 payoff from a $1 exacta ticket only returns $98, the take will have gone up by 10% of what it used to be, but not 10% of the pool.

If the take were going up 10% in the way you're meaning it (from 22.68 cents on the dollar to 32.68 cents), then I'd agree with you on the impact.

I also agree with El Angelo that the example of the $100k player is totally irrelevant, and my view comes from my own experience.

I did have one year where I got some major scores heading in so I had capital, and had lost my job and couldn't find a new one. So totally by accident, I found myself a "pro" for the year. I ended up betting about $55,000 and profiting about $25,000 (oh if I could only do that again). Even though I reported the income and paid taxes, with my 6 months of unemployment checks, it sustained me.

If the kind of take increase proposed in CA had happened during that year, it wouldn't have changed my paying habits one bit. At most, it might have cost me a few hundred bucks, since the win pool, P3, P4 and superfectas aren't impacted.

A guy who bets $100k and is winning isn't going to stop playing because of a $2,000 vig increase. And again, the increase will be much less for all real horseplayers. Do you know anybody who plays ONLY exactas and tris?

And a guy who bets $100k and is losing won't be impacted either - he's either really rich or has no judgement and is probably leaving the barmaid $50 tips.

Someone who plays the way I do now (I'm working again and having to readjust my handicapping after steady losses), maybe $500/month, will only notice it if s/he hits a couple of $15,000 trifectas. I should have such problems.

Again, the takeout increase is bad, but trying to make it a disaster or last straw isn't appropriate.

Cangamble said...

Steve, most of today's big bettors don't bet at the track and worry about $50 tips. Price sensitive bettors make up around 20% or more of the total pool size btw.

Secondly, if you have a line of credit, and lets say it goes up from 3% to 4%, are you saying this is a 1% price increase? Wouldn't the increase cost you 33% more money?

Anonymous said...

HANA claims that the fact that other tracks have a higher take on TRIS is irrelevant. That's where they are missing the boat. If the true issue is takeout, and takeout for the whole industry, then you can't call for a boycott on CA tracks and then ignore every other track in the country that has a higher take. Just looking at TRIS, tons and tons of tracks have a higher take than CA on TRIS yet there isn't a peep from HANA on those.

HANA's heart is in the right place but their head is off in the clouds.

What HANA doesn't realize (and what Alan explained so well with his post a while back) is that take is only a part of the track choice equation for almost every player (whether HANA will admit that or not). If the only thing that mattered was TAKE and not QUALITY, then Sam Houston and Retama would have the biggest Pick 3 pools in the country. But they don't, and we all know why.

New York has one the highest Pick 4 takes in the country but people still play the P4 at Belmont, AQU, and Saratoga.

Churchill Downs and Keeneland have some of the lowest Pick 6 takes in the country, yet their pools pale in comparison to California and New York.

HANA is also conveniently ignoring another crucial aspect of track/bet choice by players: individual success.

Some players are more successful playing certain tracks and surfaces. Should they change based solely on take? Track choice would depend on the difference in W/L and ROI as compared to the take. If I'm successful at playing the Pick 3 in California (say 10% hit rate with a healthy ROI) but I can't ever hit one to save my life at Sam Houston (something like 1 or 2%) why would I switch to the low take track? It's almost irrelevant what the track is taking if I never cash a ticket at that track.

It's not as simple as "low take good, high take bad". Fundamentally, yes, we should all want low take on all bets at every track. It would be in racing's best interest to lower the take ACROSS THE BOARD and increase the churn - there is no question about that. But choice of tracks to bet is not as simple as the question of "which has the lowest take", it's a combination of take, quality and individual success.

steve in nc said...

I'd shop for the line of credit with the lowest interest, all things being equal. But when it comes to racetracks, all things are not equal, as anon's post stated so well.

I am a price-sensitive bettor. The odds determine whether I bet, how much I bet, and which horses I key and/or cover. So the dramatic odds swings after the pools close bother me much more that the kind of takeout increase you're battling.

Whether you want to think of this increase as 10% or 2 cents on the dollar, it will only rarely be discernable on the posted exacta odds on the tote. And you have to bet a hell of a lot of money to influenced by whether a 9-1 winning exacta is going to pay $20 or $19.80 for $2. My main beef on that change in payout would be breakage, not takeout.

I'd gladly join a battle to get tracks to round up as well as down when it comes to breakage. Or to force all pools to close at a pre-set time a minute or two before the first horse is scheduled to load. Or to force a uniform national ban on drugs including lasix with stiff testing and samples frozen for later testing once the labs develop new detection methods. Those are battles for all horseplayers. This one seems like a fight for the whales of California, and I think those $100k/year bettors can take care of themselves.

jk said...

The main issue here is racing is competing with slots (7% takeout), blackjack and poker (<5% takeout).

NYRA with its 26% takeout is broke without a bailout from slots.

HANA is the voice of the few who have chosen to stick around and even here there is a lash back against their cause.

Most have gone quietly into the night to the slots and poker.

Figless said...

If everyone would just focus on betting on the horses I publicly announce I am "against" on this blog none of you would need to worry about takeout rates :-)

Despite my lossed I will continue to provide my selections as a public service.

Anonymous said...

Figless,

Thank you for the honesty.



After Day 1 it's like taking "candy" from a baby at SA. Maybe dirt is easier to handicap. Just make sure the fucking china man isn't riding your horse (Jones Brother I made a large wager on).

Dirty

steve in nc said...

Figless, nothing to be ashamed of. Switch proved a worthy single. And while playing against a 7-2 shot that has never tried the surface is the right thing to do even if it doesn't work out. Same reason it didn't make sense to single Sidney's Candy.

But I think Alan had the right idea, that waiting until more horses have dirt form and the nature of the track reveals itself probably makes the most sense. And that way, you get to support the boycott even if you don't think it's the best tactical move.

Steve D said...

Steve in NC,
While I disagree with your point about the impact of the takeout increase and the fact that any difference "will be negligible," I respect your opinion.

I hope that this opinion also extends to:

Reductions in COLAs for social security recipients.
2-3% reductions in federal budgets for education, welfare, and other things that your previous comments suggest that you hold dear.
2-3% reductions in the wages of government employees.

After all, you've made a good case that the effects will be negligible on these people and the behavior won't be affected.

steve in nc said...

Steve D - For folks who make most of their income on California DD, exactas, tris, and pick 3s, you are right and the analogy is perfect. It will impact the pros.

But for most people, betting does not play the role of social security or salary.

For most of us, betting is recreation and involves choice. You can and should bet on tracks and pools with the lowest take if you think that makes or breaks your ROI, or if you have political objections. You don't need a declared boycott to do that.

As for education cuts, the laid off teachers and the kids facing higher class sizes don't have a choice, and we're talking about their future and our country's future.

But lessons from larger politics do apply here. Activists have learned that while the boycott is a powerful weapon, it has to be carefully targeted and carried out. People who agree on issues have fiery internal debates over tactics.

I agree with HANA about takeouts. But I don't think this hike hits enough people hard enough to get people to act. I hope I'm wrong, and maybe I will be. Politics is a quirky business and I'm sure many people had their doubts about whether the Montgomery bus boycott would work. Somehow to me, this takeout hike doesn't rise to the level of equal rights or union rights for migrant workers. Or even breakage.

And if my feeling that most horseplayers are going to shrug their shoulders at this is right, the industry will ignore us that much more completely the next time we speak up.

markinsac said...

HASTILLY CALLED NEWSCONFRERNCE
SANTA ANITA
DECEMBER 27, 2010

REPORTER 818: Sir, can you tell me how Santa Anita's handle numbers are down over 20% so far?

BOSS: You buffoon. We competed with the NFL and there was a huge blizzard on the east coast!

REPORTER 818: But handle numbers are actually up at Turf Paradise and Golden Gate. Did snow bound players on the east coast play those tracks and forgot to play yours?

BOSS: There was record snow on the east coast. Mother Nature killed us.

REPORTER 818: But even your in-state numbers were down.

BOSS: Um, I'm needed elswhere. I'm letting Doug O'Neil finish up the newsconference for me.

REPORTER 818: Doug, can you explain the in-state numbers being down so drastically?

DOUG O'NEIL: I don't know how that got there.

REPORTER 818: Doug, could the widely reported "PLAYERS BOYCOTT" be having an effect?

DOUG O'NEIL: I don't know how that got there.

REPORTER 818: Doug, you sound like you have your head up your ass.

DOUG O'NEIL: I don't know how that got there!

Anonymous said...

Marcinnc,

How were the in-state numbers on Monday compared to 2009's first Monday card? Looks like a wash to me.

Anonymous said...

CA Racing is regulated by fools no different than the fools who have run the state into the poor house. CA is even worse than NY, if that is possible. But, thankfully, summer in the northeast is fast approaching: I received my first Saratoga rental bulletin today from Tom Federlin at Racing City Realty! /S/greenmtnpunter

alan said...

LOL, I got the Federlin email too. What a flake. But he's got the goods in Saratoga for sure.