A somewhat tiresome concern reared its head just lately in a Gleaner report, a trainers’ association agitating advertising and marketing company Supreme Ventures Racing and Amusement Limited’s (SVREL) “for an fast increase (in purses) since the charge (of horse routine maintenance) has absent up drastically”, in accordance to Ian Parsard, who the write-up quoted as “leading talks for an improve on behalf of the stakeholders”.
In the extremely to start with paragraph, the post pointed out, “A $100-million purse increase was past built in 2017 when SVREL took above the operations at Caymanas Park”.
Let’s get a search at what has occurred at Caymanas Park considering the fact that SVREL took about in early 2017, pre-COVID 19, the onslaught of which struck accurately two a long time later on, amid horrendous losses by the endorsing company, and proceeds to influence just about every financial cloth of its company two a long time onwards.
Within just its initially 22 months at Caymanas Park, about a 12 months shy of the COVID-19 impression, SVREL watched $607.7 million vanish into the sinkhole it took over from Authorities, which, over two many years prior to privatisation, had pumped US$40 million of taxpayers’ cash into Caymanas Observe Limited’s (CTL) functions.
Just before one particular could have said, “Who dat?”, in significantly less than a yr, COVID-19 strike with a pressure that resulted in a shutdown of Caymanas Park for close to 4 months. Beneath rigid COVID-19 protocols for resumption, which commenced with no spectators, morphing into confined patronage, amid community panic of the virus, the selling corporation, knocked off its feet, like almost each and every other company in the region, has been making an attempt to raise alone from the canvas, only to have a trainers team now towering with the threat of a purse-maximize knockout.
It is, certainly, a unfortunate condition to watch from a length, extra so a ringside seat, figuring out the problem of purses at Caymanas Park goes considerably beyond what is getting ridiculously presented as “It has been four yrs because we have gained one, so, personally, I assume an enhance is overdue,” in accordance to Parsard.
Horsemen all share a comparable trait. They want to have their cake and eat it at the identical time. Not a single has stopped to look at that the promoting enterprise took around a bleeding racing plant that must have been shuttered, promptly effecting a $100-million purse boost, with nothing at all on document from the earlier operator that the organization product was a workable a single, only to be strike, within just three several years of huge losses, by the best global financial crisis ever.
Amid all this, the United Racehorse Trainers Association of Jamaica wants, as Marie Antoinette had instructed, to have cake even though there is no bread. SVREL common supervisor, Lorna Gooden, was somewhat complimentary in her diligently crafted reaction, producing guaranteed not to guarantee any cake.
Having said that, the promoter partly warrants the heat it has been dealing with. As an alternative of attacking head-on the root of its issues, a business enterprise design inherited from CTL, it has been tip-toeing about a reduction-generating technique of racing, which has no put in a one-monitor jurisdiction.
A promptly declining horse population proceeds to be divided into 21 types of runners less than a program of affliction and boasting races, ensuing in inequitable classification and weight allotment, which, in switch, toss up weak betting options in person races every single racemeet at Caymanas Park.
During the working of races, it is obvious that three-quarters of just about every discipline that heads to the gate has no likelihood whatsoever of profitable simply because horses are possibly also significant, too mild, or merely do not belong in a particular team, which, of class, ought to have an affect on betting.
From the promoter’s standpoint, this need to be a reduction-producing situation. As much as the horsemen are worried, they naively just cannot fully grasp that this is the place their actual issues exist.
Just take, for example, entrepreneurs and trainers with a few- and 4-calendar year-olds who materialize to gain maiden occasions with circumstances connected this sort of as not earning a distinct dollar figure or not possessing positioned 2nd to fourth. Obtaining won one of these races, they devote the next year, or lengthier, waiting in non-winners-of-two, to beat horses who had positioned in common races.
Are not these afflicted trainers, the the vast majority, staying deprived of purse money by these kinds of a system? What if all horses were effectively rated according to performances in races and positioned in their respective courses, dependent on ability, rather of becoming grouped in accordance to number of races won, which has almost nothing to do with top quality or potential? Wouldn’t entrepreneurs and trainers, in general, be far better off earning purse money between equitable competitiveness as an alternative of sitting down and incurring expenses, working day immediately after working day, awaiting the greater horses to ‘win out their conditions’ when earning very little?
Nonetheless, they sit, grumble, and issue the ‘handicaps’, which never exist, resorting to “we want a purse increase” every time the likely receives tricky.
Nicely, if they all want to sit and view a horse go from a $1 million assert tag to $550,000 in 9 days, the promoter integrated, killing the betting, and depriving a genuine horse at that stage of a winner’s purse, they might as effectively have cake, thinking of there is no bread.
Ainsley ‘Jimmie’ Walters has been covering horse racing for additional than 25 yrs for the Gleaner Firm (Media) Restricted and is the editorial and generation coordinator for the Monitor And Swimming pools race kind.