Del Mar Online Racing Community
Get the latest information about Del Mar.
WHAT"S GOIN On?
http://www.pasadenastarnews.com/rds_sea ... arnews.com
WILSON: Del Mar on track for Breeders' Cup?
By Art Wilson, horse racing columnist
Posted: 09/11/2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Host it, and the fans will come.
Can you imagine a Breeders' Cup at Del Mar? Party Town USA? At the track that needs to only open its gates to attract fans?
San Diego would go absolutely bonkers.
All Del Mar needs to do is widen its turf course to accommodate larger fields and it's here. It's only a matter of time before the seaside track hosts its first Breeders' Cup.
This year, Oak Tree at Santa Anita will host the Super Bowl of horse racing Nov. 6-7 for an unprecedented second consecutive year, and Churchill Downs will be the site for a record seventh Breeders' Cup in 2010.
Seeing as though Del Mar president Joe Harper said Wednesday on closing day that the track finished in the black this summer, well, the money is there to expand that grass course.
How about it, Joe? Can we expect to see the Breeders' Cup at Del Mar in 2011?
"It wouldn't be too soon, if we could do it, but I probably think it's better at a later date," Harper told a group of reporters in the press box following the fifth race.
Translation: At a time when many race tracks across America are showing double-digit declines in on-track attendance and handle, Del Mar is doing well.
"We've had a pretty good year this year," he said. "It looks to me right now like we're probably a million dollars to the better, very close to it, mainly because of fivedays a week and the fact that our business was good."
Consider that Del Mar has a creative way of balancing its attendance figures.
For instance, management reported an on-track crowd of 42,549 for the Pacific Classic on Sunday, but a good portion of that number showed up after the races for the Ziggy Marley concert in the infield.
Yes, concert goers were included in the final figure.
Thanks to fans of Ziggy and others who performed in concerts this summer, DelMar enjoyed an average daily on-track attendance of 17,181, a 7.4 percent hike over last year's 16,002 and the track's highest since 19,685 per day in 1987 - when Ziggy was only 18 and perhaps had not heard of Del Mar.
Still, average on-track handle was up 5.8 percent and all-sources handle, which includes Advance Deposit Wagering and out-of-state wagers, showed a slight gain of 0.3 percent.
At a time when national betting figures, according to Equibase, are down 11.1percent for the year, any figure in the black is a positive.
But the track's synthetic Polytrack surface, which suffered 12 fatal breakdowns this summer, including eight in the mornings and four in afternoon racing, could be a hindrance to future Breeders'Cup plans.
"It certainly wasn't for Santa Anita. They put two in a row on it," Harper said.
But that was when the majority of trainers loved artificial tracks. It seems the tide has turned and more trainers now either are on the fence or have done a 180-degree turn regarding synthetics.
Well-respected trainers like D. Wayne Lukas, still the Breeders' Cup's all-time leading conditioner, and Nick Zito don't want anything to do with them. And they're not alone.
"I think it will be in some minds," Harper said when asked if Polytrack will be a negative in Del Mar securing a Breeders' Cup bid, which he said still is on the front burner for track officials.
Harper, asked when that day might come, did not want to commit.
"I even hate to say it because it involves sitting down with all the parties, including the leasing commission and the Fair board and deciding where that project fits in," he said.
Harper was pleased with the inaugural Pacific Classic Racing Festival, which included the track's signature race and 10 other stakes races over Labor Day weekend.
The Labor Day on-track crowd of 11,343 was a little light, but that might have been because the holiday was a bit later in the month than normal.
"I'm not in charge of the calendar," Harper said. "LaborDay weekend has always been kind of a confusing thing. You're never sure which day is going to be the big day or the bad day or whatever, but I think it's probably better to have an earlier Labor Day than a later Labor Day."
Prediction: Look for Del Mar to keep the Racing Festival format intact next summer, but move it up one or two weeks before the kids return to school.
Del Mar also will host the Breeders' Cup in 2012 or 2013. I think it's better than even money the horses will be running on dirt those twodays.
"The bill approved in Congress to avert the so-called fiscal cliff would bring the first major tax increase on high earners in 20 years."
Wall Street Journal, Jan 2nd 2013
Checked with the racing office about this. Because of changes in the infield, it's no longer possible to position the gate for that distance.
"Peace is that brief glorious moment in history when everybody stands around reloading."
-- Thomas Jefferson
With the first turn so close to the starting gate it made for a very unfair race for most horses drawn outside.
Sarcasm:the ability to insult idiots without them realizing it
I ask why there aren't 7 1/2 furlong grass races anymore at Del Mar?
That means my guy Syncopate is going to hold the track record for that particular race FOREVER
If wishes were horses then beggars would ride-
& If dirt were dollars we'd all be in the black
Also-it's a bit of a hassle to drive the starting gate outta the way. Wouldn't want this to happen (check 1:32 on) >>>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f25rYfahlfA
I must be getting old ... I like the track and lineup just as it is. If the track and crowd gets any bigger, Del Mar will lose much of the charm.
It's a Great Day in Del Mar!
Happy Sailing ... _/)
Paul -- http://www.dm92014.com
The only way Del Mar will be able to get a Breeders' Cup in my opinion is aside from widening the track and turf course is to install lights. Until another track capable of racing at night comes along with a serious bid, I see Churchill Downs getting several Breeders' Cups in a row, mainly on two accounts:
1. With Friday clearly established as a second BC Day, I can't see them trying to run BC races early in the afternoon on Friday. Too many people can't get off of work on Friday, especially since that Friday is often the first in November when the employment and other key government numbers come out and those in the financial industry have to react to that. It's not like the summer where people can get away with leaving work at noon.
2. The Asia-Pacific region can no longer be ignored from a wagering standpoint. There is the potential for hundreds of millions in new handle from there.
Price And Probability
A method DOCUMENTED by the Internal Revenue Service!
Being realistic, no, there is not.
"I'm Winston Wolf. I solve problems."
Who is online
Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests