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The race lineups announced Monday for the two Breeders' Cup cards Nov. 6 and 7 include a couple of pleasing tweaks to last year's schedule:
*The BC Marathon has been moved from Saturday to the otherwise all-filly Friday, which provides slightly better balance between the two cards. Last year there were 5 BC races on Friday and 9 on Saturday, while this year it will be 6 and 8. Last year, betting suddenly and dramatically tailed off towards the end of the Saturday card in comparison to years in which there has been eight BC races on Saturday.
The 6/8 alignment also allows for an all-BC Friday pick-6. Last year, the Las Palmas Handicap was the last leg of the Friday pick-6, detracting from the focus of the day. The rearranged Saturday lineup is a more pleasing one, with the BC Juvenile Turf properly demoted to an earlier slot on the card whereas last year it was the fourth race from the end. This year, the last six Saturday Cup races are the six Grade 1 events, following the G2 Juvenile Turf and ungraded Turf Sprint, and the last five Cup races are all from the Original Seven: the Juvenile, Mile, Sprint, Turf and Classic.
The lineups were posted with a "subject to change" disclaimer. Friday's card, when first post is 11:15 a.m., will have nine races, with the six Cup events preceded by two allowance races and followed by the Las Palmas. Saturday's 10-race card will begin with the Damascus Stakes at 10:05 a.m., and the eight Cup races will be followed by the G2 Oak Tree Derby.
They had it right at Monmouth...add some "prelim" BC races on Friday like the Dirt Mile, Marathon, Juvy Turf, etc. And then bring on the main event on Saturday. Instead, they tried the stupid Ladies Day and it's been the biggest mistake in racing ever. Even bigger than polytrack. They tried to emulate the KY Oaks but that only works because Derby wknd is practically a holiday there. And its just one race, after 5pm on the East Coast, that people can catch. I would have to take a day off of work to see the races. How stupid is that? What other sport has their championship decided on a workday afternoon? All I can think of is the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament.
Running the Breeders Cup on a Saturday night will cost the day the few "casual fans" under 40 that it has. Nobody under 40 (myself included) will give up their Saturday night to hang out at an OTB or watch horse races on TV.
i just don't get the comments about the nfl annihilating the cup were day 2 to be held on sunday. me and many of my friends like both pro football and horse racing. somehow, week in and week out, we manage the herculean task of simultaneously watching foots and betting horses on sundays. it's not that hard, really. in fact, it's much easier than taking friday off from work to bet the horses. isn't handle higher on sundays than fridays? why would that be any different on breeder's cup weekend? also agree w/those who'd like to see a sat nite cup...thought this would make it even tougher on "cold weather" sites (belmont's bad enough in the day...i can only imagine how cold the place could get on a late fall evening)...would think opening it up to the asian markets would send handle through the roof.
Steve, A little late, but nice essay on breakage - another in a long list of anachronisms that only serve to blunt the appeal of this game. Aside from relieving mutuel clerks of the necessity of counting exiguous amounts, the excuse for breakage I hear must often is the same one you cite on page 26 of "Exotic Betting" - high infrastuctural costs. Even so, racing seems to be the only industry where advances in technology, and the application of those advances, never seem to reduce the price of the product to the customer. Moreover, racing also seems to be one of the few industries where competitive pressure typically results in higher, not lower, product pricing. High infrastructural costs or not, it would still be nice if occasionally some initiative were undertaken to lower the cost of wagering for the average horseplayer.
This info is per NYRA website and NY State Racing & Wagering law. My opinion would be Internet websites are only required to pay on the true outcomes of races only. NYRA to Pay Out Both Official and Actual Superfecta for Race 9 on Thursday, September 24 Contact: Dan Silver | September 25, 2009 In the ninth and final race of the day at Belmont Park on Thursday, September 24, an error was made in the posting of the fourth-place finisher, resulting in an incorrect Superfecta order. Following is the sequence of events: 5:18:40 p.m. – Race 9 Post Time 5:22:13 p.m. – Incorrect Superfecta order (8-14-5-10) posted and made official 5:22:17 p.m. – Tote system enabled cashing of incorrect Superfecta 5:25:06 p.m. – Tote system suspended payment on all pools 5:49:44 p.m. – Correct Superfecta order (8-14-5-13) was enabled in the Tote system for cashing New York State regulations require that once the official order of finish is posted, it must be paid. In addition, NYRA will honor wagers made on the actual order of finish.
The issue of the BC being held for two years in a row at SA has nothing to do with synthetic tracks - it has to do with the BC playing hardball with Churchill. And for the record it is a decision I absolutely think was horrendous. Churchill Downs has had the BC seven times now, Santa Anita five, Belmont four... I would like to see other tracks get s shot; yes there are logistical issues but Delaware, Philadelphia, Tampa, Del Mar, Saratoga etc. could all host. The problem with the BC is simple, their onerous terms to the track have made it harder for track operators to justify. Old Timer, There is no question that Kentucky is the source of great horses worldwide - who would pay to watch a bunch of Cal and NY breds?
No one forced GW's connections to enter the Classic instead of the Turf, and no one forced them to run once the track came up sloppy. Fault rests with the connections, not with dirt, Monmouth or the BC. There was no need to announce the BC decision so soon, what harm would have come by waiting a few months. They were looking for an excuse to run on the AWT and found one in NYRA's bankruptcy.
Yuwipi: Thanks for reminding me of the talk of Santa Anita becoming a permanent BC site. I believe that also was in part because of what happened with George Washington two years ago at Monmouth. That said, I think people since realized Santa Anita and their Pro-Ride surface (one that to me actually played fair last year) would not be appealing to everyone, so that's why Churchill got the 2010 BC. If we are ever going to have a permanent site, as I've said in the past, there is one track I would be looking at for such that I suspect BC Ltd. would have little trouble being able to buy or lease from its current owners (I believe Greenwood Racing, which owns Philadelphia Park): Atlantic City Race Course. Atlantic City to me might be the ideal spot as a permanent BC host because it would truly be a neutral track with regard to racing over it since the main DIRT track is 1 1/8 Miles and the turf course is one mile in circumference. This would likely, however, require that the BC Juvenile Events be lengthened to 1 1/8 Miles (something I would like to see be done permanently anyway) and the BC Filly & Mare Turf being run at either 1 3/16 or 1 1/2 Miles since with a short stretch, Atlantic City's turf course does not allow for races at either 1 1/4 or 1 3/8 Miles. It also would likely eliminate the BC Dirt Mile, but that to me is a race that is not really needed anyway. The monies for that race could be better used by adding the BC Starter race I suggested previously in this blog (1 1/4 miles for a $500,000 purse, with all starters having to run one of seven BC Starter qualifying races around the country that would be worth $100,000 each four weeks before the BC) as well as a BC Ladies Starter that would be at 1 1/8 Miles for the same $500,000 purse (and the same qualifying proceedure as the boys). There could be two short meets at Atlantic City in that scenario: A 12-16 day meet right after Labor Day through early October (including stakes events designed to give horses a chance to get a race over the track before the BC and also with the Monmouth meet going back to a Labor Day finish) and then a brief break in the Meadowlands thoroughbred meet for a five-day BC meet that would generally have the BC between November 5-6 and 11-12 (with that meet starting on Election Day, dates reflect a two day BC). Since Atlantic City I believe still has the lighting fixtures from when they raced at night in place (from the last full meet at Atlantic City that was run in 1996), a nighttime BC would not be a problem there if that is in fact still the case. Such a setup would also be perfect for Atlantic City since that would fulfill all live racing requirements they would have for a season in a much better way than how it has been done in recent years: Six cards of six races each, as was done on three consecutive weeks of Thursday and Friday racing in April this year. At the same time, it could be agreed that this setup would allow any such racing dates at Atlantic City to count against the 141 dates that the NJSEA has been required to run between Monmouth Park and the Meadowlands for T-Breds (one reason the fall harness meet at The Meadowlands was dropped this year as I remember), which I think would be a good situation for all. Another positive of having the BC at Atlantic City on a permanent basis would be that hotel rooms would not be an issue given the thousands of rooms at the Casino hotels that are in Atlantic City itself, something I'm sure the Casinos would appreciate given their competition with all of the new slot locations that have opened up in recent years.
I hope the BC idiots put the pick 4's on breeders cup races only. Last yr on Friday was a joke not 1 pick 4 with 4 breeders cup races. Both had other races. Of course these are the same idiots that had it at SA on rubber 2 yrs in a row. Hey maybe next yr we can run all the races backwards or on cement...........or Astro turf???
92LNeck, I posted the very same hope on the Illman Blog a month ago, before Jackson put RA on the shelf. It allows her to confront an actual champion at a distance that is right up her alley and would become the focal point of the weekend, even if Sherriffs finally gets around to doing the right thing and runs Zenyatta in the Classic on Saturday. Who wouldn't salivate over a Goldikova-RA showdown?