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Author Topic: What a shock - ITHA supports HAW, opposes AP at IRB meeting  (Read 1908 times)
beobob
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« on: January 30, 2013, 03:16:41 PM »

In his DRF article Marcus writes:

"The purse increase was included in a requested 2013 stakes schedule submitted by Hawthorne. The IRB approved Hawthorne’s schedule unanimously, but voted only 5-3 to approve Arlington Park’s stakes schedule. The Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association voiced opposition to the $400,000 American St. Leger, a 1 3/4-mile turf race on Million Day that was introduced in 2012.The ITHA backed the $250,000 Illinois Derby purse increase despite the fact Hawthorne has cut overnight purses for the start of its 2013 winter-spring meet, which begins Feb. 15."

It does not appear to me as though the ITHA uses an objective measure to determine what is best for Illinois Horsemen.  Both the 400K and the 250K do nothing to help the rank and file that run every day.  Assuming 9 race daily cards, Hawthorne could raise overnight purses about $800 a race, AP could raise purses by about $500, yet we support HAW and oppose AP.

Other threads have discussed the wisdom or folly of both of those races, but if your charge is to do what is best for the horsemen you represent, how do you not oppose both of them? Also, there are political considerations. Did anyone really think that either stakes schedule would be voted down? The pragmatic response would be for the ITHA to support both or oppose both.

While I'm sure that in his position Marcus can't editorialize, if you read between the lines in his last sentence he points out the inconsistency of the ITHA's position.  I know that I'm in the minority here and that many feel Hawthorne must be helped and the evil empire destroyed, but for the ITHA to waste AP ammo on this while giving HAW a pass seems politically and practically shortsighted.  Given the state of Illinois racing, we will have difficult future negotiations with AP.  How can opposing only AP in this help us in the future?
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honest & balanced terry
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« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2013, 04:22:51 PM »

It does not appear to me as though the ITHA uses an objective measure to determine what is best for Illinois Horsemen.

Really? What would be an "objective measure"?

Quote
Both the 400K and the 250K do nothing to help the rank and file that run every day.  Assuming 9 race daily cards, Hawthorne could raise overnight purses about $800 a race, AP could raise purses by about $500, yet we support HAW and oppose AP.

Based on recent runnings of the IL Derby, Illinois horsemen take home a huge chunk of the total purse. So Illinois isn't losing much. But as for the St. Leger, besides Block's horse, most of the money flowed out of state, did it not?

Quote
Other threads have discussed the wisdom or folly of both of those races, but if your charge is to do what is best for the horsemen you represent, how do you not oppose both of them?

Have you ever actually approached Campbell or any member of the ITHA board and asked them why they do what they do? Why they support Haw or AP in this instance or that?
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honest & balanced terry
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« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2013, 04:31:00 PM »

Oh ... wait. What do you know, the ITHA did indeed explain its reasoning on the Arlington race:

"ITHA President Mike Campbell, vice-president Chris Block and executive director Glen Berman made counter-arguments.

"It did not bring out the stars of racing," Berman insisted. "It was a poor field —there was an $18,000 claimer and a $40,000 claimer in the race — and it lost well over $300,000 for our purse account."

"The horse who won it was a quality horse, and selfishly for myself and my family — which made $80,000 last year — I'd like to see it run again," said Block, trainer of Ioya Bigtime, the family-owned Illinois-bred runner-up. "But I was not elected to the board of the ITHA to take that stance. I represent the horsemen of the state of Illinois."

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/horseracing/ct-spt-0130-hawthorne-illinois-derby--20130130,0,4762097.story
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beobob
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« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2013, 04:48:12 PM »

Sorry, I forgot.  AP bad, HAW good. 

I oppose the Leger, and do not think that the increase in the Illinois Derby purse will do anything for Illinois horsemen save the few that would still run in this race without the increase. So while I admire your tenacity, we disagree. If you oppose the 400K because it detracts from Illinois horsemen, the 250K does as well.  The the Illinois runners in the HAW race would probably still be running if the purse was 300K, so if you think that allowing Block to get 75K instead of 30K for 3rd is good for Illinois horsemen, maybe you're right.
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jrstark
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« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2013, 05:00:11 PM »

From the September dates hearing recap:

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Hawthorne president Tim Carey testified to the IRB that additional money steered Hawthorne’s direction could be used to boost the purse of the Illinois Derby to $750,000 or $1 million, but Carey said after the meeting that no specific plans had been formulated.

http://www.drf.com/news/illinois-racing-board-decision-shifts-2013-dark-day-simulcast-revenue-arlington-hawthorne
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honest & balanced terry
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« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2013, 05:10:53 PM »

Sorry, I forgot.  AP bad, HAW good.  

My question to you was regarding whether or not you asked anyone at the ITHA about their reasoning. There's no "good or bad" in that.

Quote
I oppose the Leger, and do not think that the increase in the Illinois Derby purse will do anything for Illinois horsemen save the few that would still run in this race without the increase. So while I admire your tenacity, we disagree.

I do NOT admire the tendency to heap criticism on the ITHA leadership without understanding, or making any effort to understand, where they're coming from.

Quote
If you oppose the 400K because it detracts from Illinois horsemen, the 250K does as well.

Apparently the ITHA leaders, including Chris Block who one could hardly accuse of being one of those low-life Hawthorne locals who are usually the object of scorn in these discussions, saw it differently. Why don't you ask one of them what made the difference instead of just launching off on criticism?
« Last Edit: January 30, 2013, 05:12:46 PM by honest & balanced terry » Report to moderator   Logged

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« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2013, 05:40:10 PM »

They should fight Balmoral and not each other.  Other states don't bow down to harness like Illinois does. 
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beobob
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« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2013, 05:54:26 PM »

Okay I'll try this one more time.

I understand why HAW wants to raise their purse.  I understand why AP wants to run the Leger.  I might not agree with their whys, but I understand.

I understand why the ITHA opposes the St. Leger and I agree with all of their reasoning and I am glad they are opposing it on my behalf. I don't understand, using the same reasoning used to oppose the Leger, why the IL Derby increase is supported. It might help the image of, and be a long term benefit to HAW, but it does nothing for Illinois horsemen, save the few who might run (who would also run with a lower purse). AP would make the same argument for the Leger.

For those without history (that includes me) we admittedly look at this through rose colored glasses and don't realize all that has happened in the past that has led to this adversarial relationship with AP.  I know that all of this factors in to how each person looks at this.  I just happen to think that the logic used to oppose the Leger is applicable the the IL Derby increase as well. A consistent position (for someone like me without any history) would be to oppose both.
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honest & balanced terry
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« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2013, 07:01:25 PM »

For those without history (that includes me) we admittedly look at this through rose colored glasses and don't realize all that has happened in the past that has led to this adversarial relationship with AP.

Here's the problem. You have created in your mind this "adversarial relationship", ITHA vs. Arlington, explanation for everything that happens. You see something you don't understand and have constructed your own explanation of why.

That's why I would suggest asking one of the ITHA board members the "why" on this.
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« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2013, 07:10:09 PM »

why not designate 4 entries for ill breds into the illinois derby, at least give them a shot at some of the money
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« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2013, 07:36:25 PM »

Here's the problem. You have created in your mind this "adversarial relationship", ITHA vs. Arlington, explanation for everything that happens.


Seriously? In my mind? I have attended every ITHA open member meeting since 2010. It is not in my mind. I might not know the history or how it got that way, but It is there.
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honest & balanced terry
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« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2013, 08:37:19 PM »

Seriously? In my mind? I have attended every ITHA open member meeting since 2010. It is not in my mind.

It's in your mind as far as motivating the ITHA to act one way or the other in any or every given situation. I went to a lot of years of ITHA meetings myself, and experienced that history, and if there's one thing I learned for sure, it's horsemen are going to do whatever is in their own interest, without loyalty to any track. If they didn't feel that extra $250k for the IL Derby benefits them in some way, they would oppose that, too. Furthermore, it's not reasonable to believe that Chris Block, for one, has an antagonistic attitude towards Arlington, but there he was, opposing that St. Hubbins race, or whatever it is.

So ask one of your duly elected ITHA reps "why", instead of assuming they did what they did simply because "Arlington bad, Hawthorne good."


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PURPLE LAVERN
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« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2013, 09:28:58 PM »

Will Helicopter be making his long awaited return in the Saint Leger?
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« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2013, 10:13:56 PM »

It's in your mind as far as motivating the ITHA to act one way or the other in any or every given situation. I went to a lot of years of ITHA meetings myself, and experienced that history, and if there's one thing I learned for sure, it's horsemen are going to do whatever is in their own interest, without loyalty to any track. If they didn't feel that extra $250k for the IL Derby benefits them in some way, they would oppose that, too. Furthermore, it's not reasonable to believe that Chris Block, for one, has an antagonistic attitude towards Arlington, but there he was, opposing that St. Hubbins race, or whatever it is.

So ask one of your duly elected ITHA reps "why", instead of assuming they did what they did simply because "Arlington bad, Hawthorne good."





Agreed. But is this again the ITHA deciding they need the increase in spring purses now and having the fall meet purses cut ? Looks like another  short term knee jerk decision like we want the casino money all now.
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« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2013, 11:00:21 PM »

They should fight Balmoral and not each other.  Other states don't bow down to harness like Illinois does.  
A good point.As far as simulcast and live racing handles go,harness only is roughly one-third,yet they have a much bigger say.I have heard it said that Hawthorne cannot race at night because the harness folks would have to sign off on it.Wouldn't there be more money for them if the Tbreds went at night?Hawthorne would do much better in my opinion going against Delta,Mountaineer and the like instead of trying to knock heads with higher quality tracks.
As to the St. Leger and other such races,AP is able to give away more money,simple as that.There are a lot of stakes that are stakes in name only as far as quality goes,at a lot of tracks.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2013, 11:04:27 PM by nmslim » Report to moderator   Logged
ggenie
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« Reply #15 on: January 31, 2013, 10:29:45 AM »

Beobob,

2 points:  1). When the IRB awarded Hawthorne the extra 10 days of simulcasting, they intended a portion of it to go to the Derby.  In fact, one commissioner said he would have liked to see the purse raised to a million.
                  2). The extra 10 days translates to about a million to the purse account.  In light of Arlington suing the IRB over those days, and if Hawthorne did not use a portion of that money as intended, is the ITHA wrong to not oppose the Derby to get the other $750,000 into Hawthorne's purse account?
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« Reply #16 on: January 31, 2013, 11:11:57 AM »

Beobob,

2 points:  1). When the IRB awarded Hawthorne the extra 10 days of simulcasting, they intended a portion of it to go to the Derby.  In fact, one commissioner said he would have liked to see the purse raised to a million.
                  2). The extra 10 days translates to about a million to the purse account.  In light of Arlington suing the IRB over those days, and if Hawthorne did not use a portion of that money as intended, is the ITHA wrong to not oppose the Derby to get the other $750,000 into Hawthorne's purse account?

How in the world does 10 days of simo translate to 1 million in the purse account. That is 100k a day, which means the purse account would have 36.4 million in it yearly. (Take into consideration that they are not open on Xmas)

And that isn't considering the live attendance money either.

Me thinks your numbers are way off.
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jrstark
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« Reply #17 on: January 31, 2013, 12:02:48 PM »

It's 19 days according to this:
http://www.drf.com/news/illinois-racing-board-decision-shifts-2013-dark-day-simulcast-revenue-arlington-hawthorne

Quote
A January dark-host day generates about $50,000 in purse money and about $27,000 in track commissions. That constitutes about an $800,000 shift in purse money and $430,000 in track commissions from Arlington to Hawthorne in 2013.

From my calculations 19 x 50k = $950,000
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honest & balanced terry
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« Reply #18 on: January 31, 2013, 12:26:48 PM »

How in the world does 10 days of simo translate to 1 million in the purse account. That is 100k a day, which means the purse account would have 36.4 million in it yearly. (Take into consideration that they are not open on Xmas)

And that isn't considering the live attendance money either.

Me thinks your numbers are way off.

Why does $36.4 million earned from simuls surprise you? Total thoroughbred purses "distributed" (however that is calculated) in Illinois for 2011 was $44+ million, and ever since simulcasting came in about 80% of purse earnings has come from simulcasts. (Which is, incidentally, why the crappy splits from ADW esp. Twin Spires is such a threat to the Illinois racing program.)

Enjoy perusing annual report for details.

http://www2.illinois.gov/irb/Documents/AnnualReports/2011_Annual_Report.pdf
« Last Edit: January 31, 2013, 12:28:30 PM by honest & balanced terry » Report to moderator   Logged

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beobob
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« Reply #19 on: January 31, 2013, 02:13:01 PM »

Beobob,

2 points:  1). When the IRB awarded Hawthorne the extra 10 days of simulcasting, they intended a portion of it to go to the Derby.  In fact, one commissioner said he would have liked to see the purse raised to a million.
                  2). The extra 10 days translates to about a million to the purse account.  In light of Arlington suing the IRB over those days, and if Hawthorne did not use a portion of that money as intended, is the ITHA wrong to not oppose the Derby to get the other $750,000 into Hawthorne's purse account?

If HAW was mandated by IRB to increase the Illinois Derby purse, then you are right the ITHA could not or should not oppose it.  I was not aware that that was a deal that was struck. 

I was just struck by the optics. I believe that the 400K spent on the St Leger is a waste of purse money, it will not drive handle or attendance on AP's biggest day.  I believe that is also true for the purse increase for the IL Derby.  I doubt that a 500K race would receive any less interest (attendance, handle, or participation) on that date than a 750K race. We will have the best horses not running in the KY Derby whether 500K or 750K (unless there is still concern about the virus). This does nothing for IL Horsemen, save the few who will participate. 

So when I see 2 races at different tracks with a seemingly identical proposals as far as their benefit for IL horsemen is concerned, and one is supported and one is opposed, it gives the appearance of favoritism.  Perhaps the ITHA fought this mandate quietly at its inception with the IRB and I'm not aware of that. If the deal struck was that money from the addition of host days had to go to a purse increase for the IL Derby, that is a bad deal for local horsemen. Whether HAW or AP has the host days, it is better for IL horsemen to have as much money as possible earmarked for overnights.  So the net effect of the change in host days for IL horsemen is that the IL Derby increases by 250K - with little local benefit, and IL stakes are cut this summer by 300K.

Now I'm not sure if the ITHA took sides in the transferring of simulcast days, but AP stuck it to IL horsemen.  Did they do that for no reason other than just to stick it to us, or is that payback for us supporting HAW getting those dates?

I am a relative newcomer to the internal politics of racing.  It just seems to me that if the ITHA was going to vigorously oppose AP's proposal (which I agree they should have) and were prohibited because of an understanding between HAW and the IRB to oppose HAW's proposal, remaining neutral toward the HAW proposal would have been wiser politically.

Terry, there is no accusation here.  I am stating how the optics of how all this went down appears to me.  I might be the only one who looks at it this way, but that is how opinions work.
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« Reply #20 on: January 31, 2013, 02:57:17 PM »

If HAW was mandated by IRB to increase the Illinois Derby purse, then you are right the ITHA could not or should not oppose it.  I was not aware that that was a deal that was struck.  

I was just struck by the optics. I believe that the 400K spent on the St Leger is a waste of purse money, it will not drive handle or attendance on AP's biggest day.  I believe that is also true for the purse increase for the IL Derby.  I doubt that a 500K race would receive any less interest (attendance, handle, or participation) on that date than a 750K race. We will have the best horses not running in the KY Derby whether 500K or 750K (unless there is still concern about the virus). This does nothing for IL Horsemen, save the few who will participate.  

So when I see 2 races at different tracks with a seemingly identical proposals as far as their benefit for IL horsemen is concerned, and one is supported and one is opposed, it gives the appearance of favoritism.  Perhaps the ITHA fought this mandate quietly at its inception with the IRB and I'm not aware of that. If the deal struck was that money from the addition of host days had to go to a purse increase for the IL Derby, that is a bad deal for local horsemen. Whether HAW or AP has the host days, it is better for IL horsemen to have as much money as possible earmarked for overnights.  So the net effect of the change in host days for IL horsemen is that the IL Derby increases by 250K - with little local benefit, and IL stakes are cut this summer by 300K.

Now I'm not sure if the ITHA took sides in the transferring of simulcast days, but AP stuck it to IL horsemen.  Did they do that for no reason other than just to stick it to us, or is that payback for us supporting HAW getting those dates?

I am a relative newcomer to the internal politics of racing.  It just seems to me that if the ITHA was going to vigorously oppose AP's proposal (which I agree they should have) and were prohibited because of an understanding between HAW and the IRB to oppose HAW's proposal, remaining neutral toward the HAW proposal would have been wiser politically.

Terry, there is no accusation here.  I am stating how the optics of how all this went down appears to me.  I might be the only one who looks at it this way, but that is how opinions work.

Your opinion is the correct one, BeoBob.  Terry will never accept whatever you point out, so do not waste your time with him.  He is Hawthornecentric and that is where you made your mistake with him.  There is nothing wrong with supporting Hawthorne, especially with the way AP is acting these days, but Terry will carry it to the extreme.  You can answer his argument, but he will come up with something else.  You have made your case well so there is no need to defend it any further, as I said, it will just be a waste of time for you and a fun activity for Terry.  Arguing is his hobby.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2013, 02:59:38 PM by APCD Dan » Report to moderator   Logged
honest & balanced terry
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« Reply #21 on: January 31, 2013, 02:57:24 PM »

Terry, there is no accusation here.  I am stating how the optics of how all this went down appears to me.  I might be the only one who looks at it this way, but that is how opinions work.

And responses to opinions are designed to shed other light on those optics.
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« Reply #22 on: January 31, 2013, 03:00:02 PM »

Your opinion is the correct one, BeoBob.

Poster ggenie just posted the reasons the horsemen supported Hawthorne's IL Derby increase, but here you are still saying through your Arlington hugger goggles that beobob's uninformed (but hopefully informed now) opinion was the correct one?

WAFI.
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« Reply #23 on: January 31, 2013, 03:49:55 PM »

Your opinion is the correct one, BeoBob.  Terry will never accept whatever you point out, so do not waste your time with him.  He is Hawthornecentric and that is where you made your mistake with him.  There is nothing wrong with supporting Hawthorne, especially with the way AP is acting these days,

Thanks Dan. Your last statement (above) begs the question, why are they acting that way?  I know the knee jerk partisan answer will be ripping CD, AP, and Mr D and their evil plot to destroy Hawthorne and Illinois racing.  Maybe that's all there is to it, but I doubt it.
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« Reply #24 on: January 31, 2013, 04:09:07 PM »

Beobob, I agree with you saying the same horses would come for $500,000 as for $750,000,  that seems to be consensus of all horsemen.  At that level, trainers shoot for timing of the race and distance and surface as the most important factors.  When the transcripts of the IRB meeting are up, you can listen and hear Mike make that exact argument, and that to increase the purse while dropping overnights is a slap in the face of the Illinois horsemen.  ( maybe not his exact words )  It didn't matter, the deal was the deal.

Concerning the St Leger, throwing $400,000 at an ungraded race, up against the Sword Dancer will never attract the top horses.  ITHA reluctantly supported it last year with all parties agreeing to review it this year.  Arlington claimed it was a huge success,  ITHA contended it was a $300,000 loss to the purse account, with only 2 legit horses in the race.  ITHA requested that Arlington split the loss with the horsemen, and Tony Petrillo said all races loose money - no.

In their cost cutting, Arlington dropped the purses for all 6 Illinois bred races, and from the Illinois owned races.

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