Friday, 24 July 2015


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Week Monday July 20 to Sunday July 26.

Taking a Closer look at Horseracing


The clues are here, but can you spot them?
A Work in Progress Guide



  We do not want our little babies having to experience
  the terror of war,  anytime in their lives.
6.00am to 10.00am
A warm welcome to all:
presented by Stephanie McGovern and  Charlie Stayt
Tour de France: Chris Froome's lead cut by Nairo Quintana
Our Carol brings us a full and thorough weather forecast. Notes only here.
A cold damp start,  strong winds in places, heavy rain coming in from the south west. Gale force winds in Scotland, local flooding, likely.
Temps  14 - 17.

Don't leave the EU, Obama tells UK
The UK must stay in the European Union to continue to have influence on the world stage, US President Barack Obama tells the BBC. 





Greece debt crisis: IMF attacks EU over bailout terms


“Courses having their cake and eating proceeds.”
Colin Russell brings news:
Published in Racing on  Tuesday July 21, 2015 Page 11.
“Which is the most influential body in racing: the government (BHA), the major bookmakers or the Horsemen’s Group? The answer, none of them – it’s the racecourses. The racecourses wield more power than any and the worrying thing is so often it’s in their own interests and not for racing as a whole.

“Racecourses are our exchequer. They hold the purse strings because just about all monies that come into racing from outside sources are channelled through them.

“Consider it, Racecourses receive money from the Levy Board as grants, mainly for prize-money; money from media rights; gate money; sponsorship money; money from owners through entries and declarations; money from the Tote; money from the bookmakers and money from catering rights. As Harold Macmillan almost told the nation nearly  60 years ago, ‘they’ve never had it so good’ .

“In addition to all those revenue streams, the jewel in their crown – at present anyway – are their fixtures.

“Since 2004 racecourses have effectively owned 1,200 of the yearly dose of 1,400 – plus fixtures and where you have a fixture you have money. They own the ‘historic’ fixtures, ones established before 2004, and although each track effectively has its own meetings, if it is part of a group like Arena Racing Company, then the group owns them.

“That’s how this month’s ‘saturation Saturday’ came about when Darley July Cup was moved so it clashed with John Smith’s Cup day. Newmarket didn’t have a future that day, but Nottingham did and Jockey Club Racecourses run both. So we now have Newmarket alongside Ascot, Chester, and York. Whatever anguish that concentration of meetings caused there is nothing anyone can do about it – the racecourses rule supreme.

“Every year since Newmarket barged in on that particular Saturday the debate has raged about how bad the situation has been for racing. The bookmakers have produced statistics showing it isn’t in racing’s best interests, but just when we thought common sense was going to prevail and it might be moved to it’s traditional slot on Thursday, JCR and Newmarket backtracked, so it looks as though we’ll have the same fixture conglomeration for the foreseeable future.

“Racecourse power is why we get other silly clashes such as Kempton and Lingfield racing on the same day. Southwell and Nottingham is another example – one owned by Arc, the other by JCR. They are 15.6 miles apart and last month raced on the same day.

“Punters think it is stupid, horsemen think its stupid, but the racecourses and its association, the RCA, don’t seem to care.

“They seem to act like spoilt kids – what is theirs is theirs and they don’t worry about how it effects anyone else.

“The way they treat their on-course bookmakers is another example. With betting exchanges and phone betting, turnover on course is really suffering. So what do racecourses do? The put up their charges for bookmakers or at least  have the option to do so. Whereas the ceiling for a daily betting permit used to be five times the admission price of the relevant enclosure, now it can be up to ten times the price.

“One of the good deeds initiated by Arc in order to prevent any accusations of their clientele  being ripped –off was to insist all on-course bookmakers bet to standard terms. No problem there then.

“But on the other hand, the three courses who have no Tote and run their own betting systems pay ten percent less than SP without actually making it clear. It seems there is one rule for bookmakers and another for racecourses.

“On the plus side, however, those three courses – Ripon, Chester, and Bangor – are well to the fore in the prize-money stakes but, despite the multi-revenue streams other tracks have,  at their disposal, they seem to try to get away with paying out as little as they can get away with.

“Any thoughts new BHA chief executive Nick Rust might try to rein in the racecourses dissipated over the Newcastle affair. It seems the coursewill be transformed into the north’s all-weather venue, not because it is the best or most suitable – it is probably one of the least suitable – but because Arc considered  that it was in its best interest to do it.

“Rust appeared to endorse Arc’s actions and made no mention of the main controversy surrounding the scheme, the destruction of the turf track. When he added he thought attendances would increase, it makes you wonder how many all-weather meetings he has attended.

“There is a move afoot for a formal tripartite agreement between the government (BHA), Horsemen’s Group and the racecourses for running racing. It’s hardly surprising the RCA, representing the racecourses, is dragging its feet. It’s like trying to get David Cameron to share government with Labour and the Scottish Nationalists when he has no need to. He at least has a mandate; the racecourses and the RCA do not. “

Your adventure into the world of Global Horseracing
a warm welcome  to Nicholas Godfrey.


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