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Monday, June 11, 2012

A Wrong is Righted

The ban against George Brennan driving at the Meadowlands, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs has been lifted following a talk between Jeff Gural and the driver Sunday afternoon at Tioga.  The driver assured Gural that his comments were misconstrued and were not an endorsement of cheating.  One controversy is put to rest.

Of course, this was one controversy which did not need to occur.  As operator of these three tracks, Jeff Gural has (and should have) the ability to ban those he feels will harm business, but the fact remains this whole situation could have been avoided if Brennan and Gural had a conversation when Brennan's comments were first published in the New York Times before instituting the ban in the first place.  Harness racing has enough scandals to deal with; we don't need to create any artificially.

Update: Harnesslink which has been on top of this story from the beginning reports Jeff Gural's response regarding the fact other trainers are not being scrutinized as much as Lou Pena as being: “I agree others may also be violating these rules which also needs to be addressed and I intend to do that,”  

Meanwhile, if you have not already caught the action, check out the replays of yesterday's running of the Artiscape Open Mare Pace and the Bettor's Delight Open Pace which were contested at Tioga Downs.

First, the Artiscape Open Mare Pace won by Dreamfair Eternal in a track record 1:49 for aged pacing mares.

Lastly, the Bettor's Delight won by Clear Vision in 1:48.2, one fifth off the overall track record for the pace.


Anonymous said...

it did not need to occur, but Mr. Gural went to far IMO. he alienated more than a few bettors, me for one.

on another note, would it be possible to find out what happened at hoosier sat. night. Robin i scoot opened with 21,000 plus in the win pool. It never came out. An unheard of wager for that track. Was it another odds on error?

Pacingguy said...


To be perfectly honest, I don't know how he alienated bettors. I would be interested in knowing why he alienated you on this decision.

Gamblers want bettable competitive races. Whether one driver is or isn't allowed to race at a track doesn't seem to be an event that would change it.

Anonymous said...

Gural exhibited poor emotional judgment, or he was manipulating the media and process. This may have been to give a greater appearance of being tough on cheating. Either way no good for anyone in my opinion.

Anonymous said...

I'm a big supporter of Mr. Gural, but even smart well-intentioned people can make a mistake.

If George Brennan deserved a ban at the three tracks, Gural would have been in a better position to decide that after a conversation with the driver..not before.

Gural took the step to have the face to face with Brennan and he's corrected things. No alienation of me.

As for looking at other people in racing who may be systematically flaunting or skirting the rules, the state racing commissions should alredy be on that issue.

If they're not, these government employees really are bureaucrats sitting on their hands while collecting a paycheck.