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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Who is Protecting the Public?

Not the racing commissions. Yes, the title of this entry could just as easily be called Fair Start (Not)Part 2, a continuation of a previous blog entry. Watch the start of the fourth race at Monticello Raceway today and see for yourself.

Can someone explain to me why wagers on the #8, Attempt to Deliver, were not refunded? Yes, I know NY like other states does not have the Canadian Fair Start rule. What I really am asking is if someone can explain the rationale for not refunding the money in this type of situation. Can racing expect attendance and wagering to increase when they commit this 'highway robbery'?

Shame on the tracks for asking for this recall rule when the old rule was revised. Double shame on the racing commissions for authorizing this thievery.

Question: Who is representing the public at the racing commission level?
Answer: No one.

Yes, you can tell me the public can write in comments to the racing commission and may attend commission meetings, but other than feeling good that they had their say, the racing commission will do the bidding of the tracks.

I can see the discussion when the recall rule was revised. The tracks indicated that the refunding of the money would hurt the track. The racing commission said what the heck, the people playing are degenerate gamblers so if we screw them a little bit more who cares.

The racing commissions as currently formed are not protecting the public's interest. In New Jersey, there is a Department of the Public Advocate which is charged with making government more accountable and responsive to the residents. What fans (gamblers) need is their own representative who is a full voting member on each racing commission. This way, the fan would have someone looking out for their interests rather than expressing their concerns to those people who solely have the interest of the racing industry. We should expect no less; after all, if not for the gambler, who would be paying the salaries of the drivers, trainers, racetrack owners and commission members?

We should demand nothing less.

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