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Bright New Dawn for Racing

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  • #12354
    • Total Posts 5616

    Anyone with views on this?

    First thoughts concerning the ‘Flat Championship’ is that I’d welcome the idea of it starting with the Craven meeting but think the proposed end at Ascot’s QE2 meeting is too early. Rather have it end with a revamped Sat/Sun Champions meeting at Newmarket in mid-October: a clearly defined six months of ‘core’ Flat racing.

    Against any tampering with the six month ‘core’ NH season (October-April) though I’d like it to start with a ‘bang’ in October with an increase in meetings: transferred from September, leaving that month NH-free.

    % MAN
    • Total Posts 5104

    I would like to see a six month core turf flat season 2nd weekend in April, the one after the National, until the last weekend in September, which could be Champions weekend.

    The core jump season would be from the first weekend in October through to the National meeting.

    Outside these periods an AW season on the flat Oct – March and a summer jumping season April – Sept.

    • Total Posts 3136

    Think it’s a load of crap, no one’s interested or will be in championships. We have the biggest race in the world (National) and it’s proposed that we will have the "added attraction" of AP being crowned the champ for the umpteenth time, it’s laughable.

    Where is the prize money for some of this crap coming from and why wasn’t the high cost of entry and food and drink addressed or 48 hour decs and all the non runners?

    How does changing starts and ends of seasons attract racegoers and generate income?

    My opinion of Racing for Change = Bull****

    • Total Posts 6217

    Against any tampering with the six month ‘core’ NH season (October-April) though I’d like it to start with a ‘bang’ in October with an increase in meetings: transferred from September, leaving that month NH-free.

    Are you going to tell Sam Morshead that Perth can’t hold their regular Perth finale in September or shall I? Holding it over until the start of October or finishing in August would be tinkering for the sake of it.


    • Total Posts 6964

    Perth has purposefully avoided scheduling any of its meetings during October (I think on account of weather-related losses) for a very long time now. Notwithstanding the abandonment of the other week, I can’t see them actively wanting to revisit October racing any time soon.

    September is numerically the most dismal month of the calendar for jumps racing, yet to what extent that balance can be redressed is debatable. Not many of the courses resuming in October will be readily talked into bringing forward their autumn seasons a couple of weeks, largely because some of them have already tried and didn’t like what they encountered. Hexham’s September card of yore, for example, could produce some really fast, horrible surfaces.

    Equally, talking some of the core summer jumping season courses into moving some of their June and July meetings to September is easier said than done. Worcester’s running of five fixtures in July but only two in September is uneven, but if those first five are more conducive to guaranteeing decent-sized attendances (barring freak weather conditions), they are going to defend them to the hilt.


    The patron saint of lower-grade fare. A gently critical friend of point-to-pointing. Kindness is a political act.

    ricky lake
    • Total Posts 2999

    Can I echo what yeats has said , I agree with his post entirely , where will the punters come from to see all these glorioius events if we keep banning them due to prohibitive costs ??, the most important one being entry fees

    And if therefore those recegoers and punters dont count as seems apparent , then why appease the betting industry whose recent antics have made the governors of racing look like complete idiots again !!!

    Will these ,muppets ever learn that the funding of racing and the quality of racing are ever linked by dross at the moment to appease the bookies who fund it

    Why not break the circle and fund racing excluding the bookies and then and only then address the flat programme and racing issues , in the interim it would be a DAMN good idea to persuade the racecources that their product is just too expensive



    • Total Posts 412

    if only it will actually happen,a lot of this seems too good to be true.
    the flat season does need to end with a bang at the end of september rather than the current champions day as come october its all about the breeders cup.
    more group ones need to be run on a saturday when people can actually watch then live instead of working.
    the jumps does need to finish with the national as the sandown gold cup is dead in the water sadly.

    • Total Posts 4825

    What do they mean by championships? Have any format details been published?

    Personally think an end of September finale for the Flat is a good thing. The Arc and Breeders Cup take precedence in October.

    Why not have a similar finale for the All Weather in early or mid March?

    • Total Posts 1046

    To be honest, it is of no relevance to "Joe Punter" when one season ends and another begins. I’d be surprised if many betting shop punters and racegoers even knew the jumps season ended at Sandown in late April! It is only relevant within racing circles for deciding champion jockey, trainer and owners.

    Therefore I dont think it matters if the seasons are altered. I’d be happy for the seasons to be split up into blocks of 6 months.

    Only problem would be October flat racing. Would it be part of the "all weather" season even though most fixtures are on turf or would the all weather flat season be re-branded as the "winter flat season"? There are group ones outside the Breeders Cup, Arc and Champions day so would these lose any prestige (ie Racing Post Trophy)?

    • Total Posts 17716

    Call me reactionary, but I fail to see what’s wrong with the flat season starting when the flat season starts, etc. etc. :roll:

    • Total Posts 6217

    the jumps does need to finish with the national as the sandown gold cup is dead in the water sadly.

    In the last the field size for the Sandown Gold Cup has been between 10-19, which compares favourably with any period of its history. There’s been no lack of quality in recent years either with the rating of the winner varying from 129-153, which I suspect would compare favourably with the spread of most long distance chases.

    The race is certainly of a similar quality to renewals in the 70s and some might consider that to be a golden age. The likes of Andy Pandy, Grey Sombrero, Charlie Potheen Otter Way and April Seventh would not have outclassed current fields, nor would double late-60s winner Larbawn. Admittedly one or two such as The Dikler and Titus Oates might have been bordering on top class, but then the former picked up the race as an 11yo and the latter was off top weight. Maybe the only difference is that Grade 1 and 2 class horses are less likely to be campaigned in handicaps these days, but that’s a general development and not something that can be directed at the Sandown event.

    It may convenient to your argument to dismiss the ocntest, but I think that much evidence suggests otherwise.


    • Total Posts 412

    on more than one occasion recently the top weight at sandown has only been in the 140s hardly a high class finish to the season,hence a million pound grand national would be a better finish

    • Total Posts 3136

    on more than one occasion recently the top weight at sandown has only been in the 140s hardly a high class finish to the season,hence a million pound grand national would be a better finish

    Why? What would be achieved by the season finishing on GN day?

    Looking ahead, Racing For Change state their next steps include working pro-actively with bookmakers to develop racings products.

    How disappointing is that, after 2 of them have just moved their online business offshore to avoid levy.

    Why is prize money so poor in Britain?

    • Total Posts 6217


    The ratings of the top weight in the Sandown Gold Cup since 200 have been:

    2000 155
    2001 154
    2002 147
    2003 161
    2004 147
    2005 155
    2006 159
    2007 161
    2008 166
    2009 145

    The minimum number of runners over that period was 10.

    That suggests to me a race that has had one below average renewal but if anything there was a steady improvement in quality before this year. It certainly doesn’t seem to me to be a race ‘dead in the water’. That’s a bit like burying someone who has a minor sniffle.


    • Total Posts 6217

    (double post) and it would have been a triple post as there was no evidencde that the first had been recorded until I checked!

    • Total Posts 1593

    I’m still undecided on this scheme as a whole, but if we’re proposing and end-of-season Flat ‘Championship’ to rival Cheltenham, my first thoughts are that it would make most sense to amalgamate the Cambrigeshire and Cesarewitch meetings at Newmarket, and switch them to late-September. Have this ‘super meeting’ running from Tuesday/Wednesday through to Friday, followed by Ascot’s QEII card on the Saturday.

    That would potentially offer:

    Group 1s

    Cheveley Park Stakes
    Middle Park Stakes
    Sun Chariot Stakes
    Dewhurst Stakes
    Champion Stakes
    Fillies’ Mile

    Group 2s

    Challenge Stakes
    Rockfel Stakes
    Pride Stakes
    Royal Lodge Stakes

    Group 3s

    Tattersalls Stakes
    Oh So Sharp Stakes
    Joel Stakes
    Darley Stakes
    Jockey Club Cup

    As well as the Timeform Million/Fillies 800, Cambridgeshire, Cesarewitch and any number of listed events and lesser heritage handicaps, all within the space of 4/5 days.

    There are of course some problems with this- Newmarket’s autumn weekned for one, and Ascot may not be too pleased that the first day of their Festival is overshadowed- but with the prospect of the meeting outlayed above, even I would have confidence in the utilitarianism of those involved coming through.

    • Total Posts 1046

    I disagree about moving all these top class events from a weekend date to a midweek date, friggo. Its better for both attendances and betting turnover that Champions day and Ascot QEII meeting remains as weekend fixtures.

    Cheltenham works as an end of season championship over jumps as jump racing is different to flat racing. Its a long established midweek festival and are the unofficial championships of jump racing.

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