HRU Feedback (2017-08-13)

Hambletonian a joke

The Hambletonian was and is a joke. How do you allow a horse to win the Hambletonian without winning one race that day? As for the DQ, it was close and sad. The nine-horse was all done and going nowhere. I wish the driver would have used more smarts than getting parked like that. Tough break for David Miller as he deserved that one.
The simple notion that ESPN, FOX sports and the rest of the world did not watch should show where harness racing is on the map. For all of those who are so pro V slots, look at the racing at Delaware and Ladbroke recently. The purses have been going down the last few years with no end in sight. Why?

Racing needs to create its own magic not wait for crumbs from the casinos.

If you think this trend makes sense, it will continue.

Racing should focus and make itself relevant by inviting sports people, celebrities, politicians to their events plus do more to encourage millenials to show up as well.

How exciting is to watch the NBA or POKER but, not racing? Those sports are spectator sports, you have an event where you, the watcher, can be involved with wagering or some other way. I do not get it why racing is still in the 50’s when it comes to promoting.

(The Hambletonian) was an all time low. I hope your industry learned from it.

— John Kaniuk / New Jersey

Hambletonian not great for harness racing

Respectfully, I don’t see Hambletonian Day 2017 as being great for harness racing. The final had an unfortunate and anti-climactic finish and CBS Sports clarifications were slow in coming — only after a boatload of commercials did the national TV audience learn what happened and why.

After Huntsville’s win in the Cane, Ray Schnittker is quoted in the Update saying that his horse is Jug ineligible. He also said that only a moron would send a horse there. I caught the latter comment via the streaming coverage. Even if that were unequivocally true, it’s hardly good for harness racing, its image, and sportsmanship generally.

I’ve been following harness racing since the days of Bye Bye Byrd, Adios Butler, and Bret Hanover and you do a superb job with Harness Racing Update. Thanks to all who contribute.

— Darrow Wood / Brooklyn, NY

Why harness racing will never be a popular sport

One word: Breakers.

The people watching on national TV continue to lose interest in the sport because of horses breaking stride. It appears fixed and leaves the new fan with a feeling of “This is a waste of money and my time.” I love harness racing, but let’s be honest, breaking horses are the biggest turn off for new fans. Older guys tolerate it….younger fans….well….what younger fans?

— John Esposito / Boca Raton, FL