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Friday, May 1, 2015

Friday Briefs

I can't help but notice this year, after the programs were printed, a scratch in the Kentucky Derby came before scratch time and one of the also eligibles is moving in.

Canadian tracks often have also eligibles in stakes races who an move in as late as the morning of race day; racing under a saddle number assigned when the program is printed, typically racing out of the post position of the scratched horse.  With gamblers demanding the maximum number of betting interests, I don't know why every race in North America doesn't have AEs printed in the program as if it was a Canadian stakes race if enough horses are entered.  Being owners want to make money, the also eligible would be free to enter any other race they can get in; scratching out of the race they were designated as an AE without penalty.  I know with the horse shortage drawing AEs may not be that easy, but what's the harm of doing so when the situation permits it?

Today is the start of the Meadowlands Challenge.  If you don't sign-up today, you are out of luck.

What does the Meadowlands have to fight against in order to win an anticipated November referendum to get a chance to operate a casino (there are no guarantees in New Jersey)?  Here is a little back and forth between Jeff Gural and a columnist for the Press of Atlantic City.  It appears it isn't going to be easy to win the support of South Jersey, meaning Central and North Jersey will have to be in favor of the referendum in a big way.  If the referendum gets on the ballot this year and goes down to defeat, the New Jersey standardbred industry better have a Plan B ready because one would imagine it wouldn't be long after election day when the group headed by Gural tosses in the towel and gets reimbursed for construction of the new track as called for in the lease agreement.

Death Penalty for Racing?  Two congressmen have had enough with racing, proposing to kill the industry off by repealing the Interstate Horseracing Act of 1978.  Were their proposal to become law, it would make wagering on horse racing by out of state sources illegal; could you imagine tracks living on what is wagered in state alone?  Realistically, the bill has no chance of pasting at this time, but it's not a good sign that someone is even trying this.

Have a great day

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