Thias may sound silly but surely isnt the answer to introduce 0-50 handicaps for Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â£2000. OK its low grade fodder but I dont think the owners of real low grade horses would mind running for a couple of grand.
But, Daylight, surely we want variety in flat racing programmes? Most people would rather watch and bet on a run-of-the-mill race of 10f plus, rather than a run-of-the-mill sprint. They’re more entertaining, there’s more to watch and enjoy. People are just not going to turn up to watch and bet on programs of sprints and mile races.
Race programs should be more responsive to the wishes of the racegoer rather than merely providing races for what the bloodstock wished to produce. It would be a step forward if the racing authorities reduced the number of sprints and increased the number of longer races – of course there would have to be a time lag of a few years so that breeders could catch up, and produce more animals capable of staying middle distances at least.
Of course it won’t happen, but it would be nice if it did.
This is insulting to connections of older horses who can’t get a run. FIVE two-year-old races on a six race card. The other race being a classified stakes worth nearly Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â£12k to the winner and with just four runners.
Classified stakes frequently have small fields and are hardly inspiring to people coming racing for the first time.
Now take a look at Beverley. There’s lots of opportunity for smaller owners and plenty of runners around too.
Venusian, would you rather watch the 3:30 at Beverley Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â (16-runner 7f 100yd h’cap) or the 3:40 at Newmarket (4-runner, 7f stks)?
But I still don’t see the point of subsiding slow horses in these unappealing punter- and spectator-unfriendly sprint handicaps. For all sorts of reasons, we should be encouraging the production of more middle distance and staying horses, not pandering to short-running mediocrity.