Wednesday, March 01, 2006

In the Beginning

This is the first post in what I hope will become a spirited exchange of information and opinions about the Thoroughbred racing industry in the United States. Trainers, jockey agents, jocks, vets, owners, grooms, and others who are involved in the sport are especially encouraged to post here. Anonymity, including my own, will serve to make our comments candid, and candid discussion is what is most sorely needed in this business.

Not a week goes by but some commentator in the Blood-Horse, Thoroughbred Times, or Daily Racing Form makes sanctimonious and ill-informed pronouncements about equine medications, purse structures, backside conditions, and a host of other important issues. Although these authors may be polished wordsmiths, their knowledge of their subject matter is demonstrably shallow, most of it having been derived from conversations among themselves at conferences and seminars. In the real world of horse racing, many of them barely know which end of a horse to feed and which end to shovel.

Typically, opinions expressed in "official" industry media go unchallenged by the truly knowledgeable denizens of racing's backstretches because no one who actually derives a livelihood from racing wants to be singled out as too knowledgeable about medications, too contentious about the way the profits are divvied up, or too discontent about race track or backside conditions. Only negative consequences, ranging from increased scrutiny by racing officials to outright retaliation by track managements, can result.

It is my intention here to establish a forum where knowledgeable horsemen and women can engage in meaningful discussion about the issues that will ultimately make or break us as an industry. I encourage all to assist me in this.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

i must speak up on the issue of's been reported many times that ky doesn't have insurance for the hotwalkers and grooms as well as the riders...well folks..we are all required to have liability insurance which covers everone on the ground!! just doesn't cover riders...if we are required to have both workman's comp and liability...then someone's getting screwed...guess who? not the insurance agencies...i wonder how much money was 'donated' by them to the politicians?...remember not one member of the Racing Authority is an actual race horse person..the only one involved with horses in there is into horse shows only...and the woman heading the thing is the wife of a alone should tell you what's going on...back to the insurance...i'm not saying riders shouldn't be insured...i'm saying it shouldn't fall only on the trainers/owners as most of these riders ride for multiple trainers and most hide some, if not all of their income...they make more than i do...and think about it...if one rider gets hurt and rides for 10's he gonna list his income..who's policy will that effect?...if he's only making $50/week off you, but lists all 10 of his trainers to increase his income to collect on...that's gonna hurt as one trainer's gonna have major probs with his say make each rider sign a list and everyone contribute that way each rider is covered only once, instead of 10 times...

12:48 AM  

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