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Author Topic: Simulcast Question  (Read 822 times)
Lockjaw
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« on: July 03, 2006, 11:26:05 AM »

Northfield Park's broadcast is easily accessible at Hazel Park Raceway, not so vice versa.  I visited Northfield this past weekend and had a difficult time finding Hazel Park's signal.  Just behind the doors that open out onto the track apron, there were five bank's of TV monitors, each bank containing 17 TV's.  That makes 85 monitors and no Hazel Park simulcast. There were 31 tracks simulcasted that evening, including Fair Meadows, Buffalo, and Canterbury Park, all accessible, except Hazel Park.  My question is:

(Despite what you think of the quality of racing at Hazel Park)

When tracks trade each other's live signal, is there some sort of requirement in their simculcast agreement that requires a minimum exposure of a participating track's signal?   
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midwestharnisdead
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« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2006, 12:34:58 PM »

Northfield Park's broadcast is easily accessible at Hazel Park Raceway, not so vice versa.  I visited Northfield this past weekend and had a difficult time finding Hazel Park's signal.  Just behind the doors that open out onto the track apron, there were five bank's of TV monitors, each bank containing 17 TV's.  That makes 85 monitors and no Hazel Park simulcast. There were 31 tracks simulcasted that evening, including Fair Meadows, Buffalo, and Canterbury Park, all accessible, except Hazel Park.  My question is:

(Despite what you think of the quality of racing at Hazel Park)

When tracks trade each other's live signal, is there some sort of requirement in their simculcast agreement that requires a minimum exposure of a participating track's signal?   

No it just means they can recieve the signal, and take the wagers.  There doesnt have to be one monitor on any simulcast track.
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Robin Burns
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« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2006, 12:57:04 PM »

It would be prudent to have a monitor for every track taken. It is unwise to take a signal without showing it and I am surprised that the racing commission would allow it. There is some reciprocity between tracks, but not always 100%. Tracks that race year round are usually given preference over a track that a seasonal unless the product is very good.

Robin Burns
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Lockjaw
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« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2006, 02:53:16 PM »

Why would you "program", if that's what they are doing, multiple monitors showing track X and no monitor showing track Y?  If you've got "Pepsi" and "Coke" in stock, why would you not put both out on the "shelves" and let the customer decide, especially if you got the "shelf space"?
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Robin Burns
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« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2006, 02:57:54 PM »

Why would you "program", if that's what they are doing, multiple monitors showing track X and no monitor showing track Y?  If you've got "Pepsi" and "Coke" in stock, why would you not put both out on the "shelves" and let the customer decide, especially if you got the "shelf space"?

It doesn't matter how many 'monitors' you have. It is rather how many 'decoders' you have.

RB
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Fillmore Bear
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« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2006, 03:13:48 PM »

Simulcasting is an all day business. There's one set of channels for the day slate and then the channels are re-assigned for night.I'm in Chicago but I suspec it is very much the same everywhere.The channels on the monitors get changed by customers, clean-up people,waitresses,people who come from the barn area to watch REGULAR TV.Sometimes the guy in the video room forgets to assign a channel to a track.Figure on learning to find a monitor you can reach so can flip through the channels OR buy a universal remote AND find out who to talk to if the track you want is not anywhere on the dial.
I realize that this sort of PATHETIC customer NON-SERVICE seems idiotic but it seems to be the norm almost everywhere.GOOD LUCK.

NO WONDER RACING IS DYING
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Les Moore
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« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2006, 05:52:29 PM »

They need some one to kick the TV and simulcast personal in their lazy asses. I've seen it everywhere I've been. How many times have you seen the same track on 4 monitors? The lazy plugs need to get off their asses and go see whats being shown instead of their CUSTOMERS having to beg to put a certain track up. Very simple isn't it track owners?
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Michigan Dale
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« Reply #7 on: July 04, 2006, 12:22:50 PM »

Quite true - I echo your sentiments, Les.   It would appear more and more lately that the simulcast folks are among the most out of touch goofballs working at many tracks.   Terrible.   They DON'T know whats going on and when questioned its like we interupted their nap or game of solitaire or watching some TV show.   A week ago it was I that brought to the attention of Northfield Park that without notice or reason Great Lakes Downs in Muskegon, Michigan tanked the Northfield signal.   I was told, Northfield would look into this travesty and perhaps should pull Great Lakes Signal.   Good idea.   Turnabout is fair play.
I still maintain that tracks in a given State should be mandated to both send AND receive signals from other tracks within the same State.   In Michigan, or example, Sports Creek and Jackson accept signals but don't send one.   How do you promote a sport if you don't put it in front of people?   Answer is simple, you can't.    GLD is so out of touch they put up podunk thorobred tracks in front of a very biased harness crowd at night but they just don't get it.   
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Les Moore
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« Reply #8 on: July 04, 2006, 04:42:28 PM »

Very well said Dale. If a business doesn't know what their customers want how can they succeed ?
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HeadInAssPatrol
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« Reply #9 on: July 04, 2006, 09:43:36 PM »

I've found the TV guys at Balmoral have been very good with putting up tracks when they come up.  I see them in the Clubhouse checking things out quite a bit and they're usually very helpful if you approach them.  I"ve talked to a few of them and if a track is missing during an evening or late in coming up, it's usually due to 2 things.  #1  Balmoral does not have enough decoders to take all the tracks despite what their "management" programs for the night.  #2  The satellite company doesn't send the proper tracks to the proper decoders on time and usually messes up what should have been weekly programmed. 

On race nights at Balmoral, programming is handled by their Mutuals department.  They call in the tracks as needed and TV follows their rules for what should be up.  Non-race nights are handled by TV and I've only found Balmoral and Arlington to be on top of what tracks need to have priority for the simulcasts.  I agree, tracks like Northfield, Hazel, etc. are doing a po-dunk job of what they show for their simulcast clubhouses. 

I've mentioned in other posts before that I've seen the Balmoral TV room and they are given complete shit to work with.  It's amazing those guys do what they can with what they have.  The Johnstons can finagle a deal for fireworks, but they can't buy more decoders or good TV monitors for the simulcast nights.  Blame the Johnstons and idiot management for the decline of customer appreciation in Chicago.

Personally, I find I have a better night at OTB's than going to Balmoral or any other track for that matter.
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