If you are like most people, you probably are unable to see the races from Kawartha Downs. On Saturday, there was a RUS event there and it turned into a small, but excellent race. Considering it was the first race of the season, I myself was surprised as to the competitiveness of it; it usually gets this good later in the year.
Anyway, with a late defection, the field was reduced to five. Enough talking; let's take a look at the replay.
The handle for the race was $3,092 which was 10% of the overall handle for the 10 race card ($30,692). Looking at the handles for the individual pools (it had the largest win handle of the day), it is clear this race would have had a larger handle but the exotic handles were suppressed due to the five horse field.
RUS is being accepted in Ontario. It is only the shortage of horses which keeps it from being an even more successful program as more horses allows for more races.
As for the lower 48, there is no doubt RUS will be successful if given a fair chance. It is just a question of exposure and familiarity. As in Canada, there is a shortage of horses (more riders wouldn't hurt), but the shortage is due to a lack of wagering being offered on the races which would allow for greater frequency and higher purses. Unless horsemen work to legalize RUS in their states, it will never happen.
Should RUS falter in the United States, the horsemen will be responsible for not supporting his type of standardbred racing. It will also be an indicator of which way the sport will be heading.