08/03/2010 4:08PM

Where's the Money, Monmouth?


Monmouth Park stopped the presses when it announced in May that it would be offering an average of $1 million per day in purses during its elite summer meeting from May 22 to Sept. 6. Jaws dropped form Seaside Heights to Melbourne at the implication. Even Japan, where they run an average of one million-dollar race per week, was impressed by the magnitude of the offer.
But reality at the Jersey shore has fallen short of the dream. In the 33 days of the Monmouth summer meeting thus far, the average purses per day have totaled an average of $795,515. While that is an admirable sum heretofore unseen in these United States, it is well short of the promised million dollars a day. $204,485 short to be exact.
Multiplied by 33 days, the shortfall totals $6,748,005 that horsemen had every reason to believe would now be in their bank accounts. Monmouth Park officials owe their owners, trainers, jockeys and fans an explanation.

Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Monmouth has not always been totally upfront with it's horsemen regarding purse distribution. Going back to the days when the Islin was bumped up to $500,000 in order to attract Spectacular Bid, the people who run every day and "make the show go" are short changed in the end, with sudden purse decreases, of course, never the result of the enhanced stake monies. The fact that the Million Dollars a day distribution claim has not come to fruition is no real surprise, the big outfits have settled in, plenty of horses to fill races and less worry about hustleing a horse to fill a trifecta. The real problem is the the "little guy" that needs to run his horse a few times a month to make a go of it, may not have stalls, can't get a race and generally gets pushed aside in favor of the bigger outfits.
dogs up More than 1 year ago
Monmouth racing in this player's opinion (35 years) is about the best there has been in years - anywhere. In winner circle- after- race- interviews I have heard a leading owner say he wonders why he has raced elsewhere. A top jockey say the money's good. Can't speak for other fans but this is great racing from $5K claimers to Haskell attracting the major Triple Crown winners.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Alan, ...... Have you looked at the upcoming condition books or talked to any of the officials to find out if there are any really big weekends coming up......... Personally I would place a call to the racing secretary to ask what Monmouth's plans are to get to the point where they give out the advertised purse distribution. I'm sure they would welcome a call from DRF, after all its good for business to let everyone that we can be looking forward to a couple of weeks of 1.3 million or so weeks........................................................................................................................................................................And if I were a horseman racing there, if they got the average up to 940,000 or 950,000 I'd be perfectly willing to give them a slide on the rest........ In fact I'm going over to the MP web site and see if in can bring up their condition book.
Steve Zorn More than 1 year ago
Even before races are drawn, it's obvious that Monmouth won't be paying out $1 million a day. To the extent that figure had any basis in fact, it was the sum of all the races listed in the condition book for a day, including supplemental races, and there are always considerably more than 12 races listed in the book, not to mention extras, many of which are low-purse claimers. Cute slogan, but there never was any basis in reality for it.
blackseabass More than 1 year ago
Alan nice job on posting new entries on your blog almost daily. blogs are supposed to be a back and forth exchange though. If you don't print the comments then it won't be much of a blog. When you print comments by someone that disagrees with you it shows that you are a man.
yuwipi More than 1 year ago
I'm a north Jersey resident but grew up a NYRA circuit fan. An annual trip to Monmouth just for the sake of seeing the place once a year has always been enjoyable. So I bear them no ill will at all. However, from the get go this whole idea has been a three card monte game fueled by non sustainable cash from a state that's bankrupt and a casino industry that is totally hostile to any track site gambling revenue schemes. Steven Crist's column at the meets inception cut through all the press bologna and laid the numbers out in black and white. In this state explanations often lead to indictments so I'm hoping they just fold up the game table in a month and find some way to come to grips with the political situation in New Jersey. A situation where the Governor has commissioned a gaming industry report that consigns both Monmouth and the Meadowlands to the shredder, and I don't mean sometime down the road. Comments may be disabled on your blog. An earlier one is sent was not posted. Have enjoyed your columns a great deal over the years and "Global Racing" was a real treat.
Ron Taylor More than 1 year ago
Alan,,,It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure this one out....the plan was never going to work just by using the numbers......EL PRESIDENTE John Forbes,,Dennis Drazin,,whom i think is an honorable man and i like by the way and his majesty Bob Kulina got together and sold the horsemen of N.J.a bill of goods on a onetime offer. When the smoke clears don't be surprised if Monmouth doesn't lose between 20-30 million dollars instead of the 10 million that Mr. Kulina .predicted...
Patrick More than 1 year ago
Ever stop to think the $1 million guarantee was dependent on certain high-purse races, particularly allowances, filling on a frequent basis? Since Saratoga opened a couple weeks ago, it seems Monmouth's programs have included more claimers and fewer allowances (except for Haskell day). I think Monmouth would be more than willing to spend the casinos' gift if the horsemen would co-operate by filling all the various kinds of races in the condition book -- including all those $80k allowances.
ron taylor More than 1 year ago
The explanation is very simple............John Forbes,,Dennis Drazin and his majesty Bob Kulina sold the horseman in N.J. a "one time only" bill of goods. If you work for the state who owns the racetrack who are you supposed to look out for???????