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Author Topic: Johnstons taking over NY  (Read 518 times)
Sr. Member
Posts: 253

« on: November 22, 2006, 01:59:24 PM »

Group with Chicago ties likely to run N.Y. tracks

November 22, 2006
Members of the Johnston family that for generations has overseen harness racing in the Chicago area are significant minority partners in a group that has the inside track at the franchise to operate New York's prestigious thoroughbred venues.
Excelsior Racing Associates won the approval of an ad hoc committee on racing appointed by New York Gov. George Pataki to run Belmont, Aqueduct and Saratoga for 20 years, beginning in 2008. The Excelsior group is headed by Steve Swindal, a son-in-law of New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner and a part-owner of the Balmoral Park harness track in Crete.

Billy Johnston and his son Johnny, president of Balmoral, are partners of Swindal's in Excelsior. The racing committee announced Monday that it will recommend to the governor and the New York legislature that Excelsior's bid be accepted over those of the other two finalists -- the New York Racing Association that presently operates the tracks and a conglomerate that included interests from Churchill Downs, Woodbine, Delaware North and Frank Stronach's Magna group.

John Johnston told the Sun-Times that Excelsior's plan for the New York ovals includes development of real estate owned by the tracks, the addition of video slot machines (which have been approved for Aqueduct) and a revitalization of racing.

''NYRA has had a lot of operational issues,'' Johnston said. ''We feel there is lots of room for improvement.''

Larry Hamel

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I sure miss the good 'ol days!!
Hero Member
Posts: 1171

« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2006, 04:04:00 PM »

still the same:

  A little known fact about modern horse racing is that in order for the industry to survive, portions of the mutuel pool, above the legal take, must remain in-house. In horse racing, this goal is not accomplished by adjusting a computer chip in the belly of a Betty Boop reel slot machine or a 2-team, 6-point teaser that once paid even money (now it pays 6/5). The player laying the odds. Rather, in horse racing adjusting the take is accomplished by adjusting the information served the public, or in other words, by keeping the public barefoot.
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« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2006, 04:32:48 PM »

Here comes the banishment of T-breds in NY. Welcome Harness.
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« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2006, 04:47:34 PM »

Here comes the banishment of T-breds in NY. Welcome Harness.

I don't know if it's "goodbye t-breds" so much as a good possiblilty of simply ruining the premier thoroughbred meet in North America. They could wreak some pretty mean havoc if they follow their Illinois harness recipe, since so much of the national throughbred scene, especially simulcasting, revolves around New York. Let's hope the NY politicians come to their senses before it is too late. Although, like politicians everywhere, they probably don't care what's on the track or TV, as long as the money is filling their "campaign" (nudge nudge, wink wink) coffers.
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Battled, Tired
Hero Member
Posts: 567

« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2006, 09:57:39 PM »

Actually I think Aqueduct will close and they'll put a CART track in....
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