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Thursday, July 22, 2010

So What Are You Going to Do About it?

With the Hanson Report public for twenty-four hours, everyone has had time to digest the contents to see what it means for harness racing in New Jersey and by extension, what it means to harness racing throughout the United States. No doubt the demise of a first-class harness meet at the Meadowlands would hurt the industry but it also won’t be the death blow either. The question is so what are you going to do about it?

The industry is at a crossroad. Some minor changes have been made over the years but in reality, the industry has not changed over the decades. Each special interest group within the industry has been unwilling to make changes and when asked to sacrifice for the common good the answer most of the time has been to have someone else make the sacrifice. Each stakeholder groups have been concerned about 'Me' instead of 'Us'. The "Age of Me" is what has brought us to this point.

One industry insider told me the Hanson Report has the potential to be the wake-up call the industry has needed for a long time. So once again, the question is ...

So, what Are You Going to Do About It?

Are you going to wallow in the misfortune and continue on as business as usual and see what you can get out of this industry; doing nothing to improve the game and be a parasite which sucks what it can out of the sport until it dies?

Or, are you going to look at this moment as a low point and decide it is time for the "Age of Us" and seriously work together and revamp the sport for the common good of all and as such, make every effort to make harness racing a self-sustaining sport once again? It may not be easy and it may require sacrifice but if harness racing dies, it won't be due to the lack of trying.

The fight for the survival of harness racing begins in earnest now. The Age of Me is dead; long live The Age of Us.

1 comment:

The_Knight_Sky said...

For me, it's not what "we should do about it".

It is however, important to keep in mind "what we shouldn't do".

That means NO knee-jerk reactions that causes futher demise to racing in the state north and south to both breeds of horses.

Nobody should emulate what the CHRB has done (and left undone) in California.

I think there is ample time in the coming weeks to gather forces and come up with a workable plan. A self-sustaining one that works for each racetrack that currently runs a parimutuel meet.

Embracing the Less-is-More concept as well as having Atlantic City Race Course and Freehold Raceway pitch in to offer more racing opportunities would help - even at the lower rungs.

No one racetrack should shoulder the entire load.