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Less is more for the Mumbai season

By Turf News | 04-Apr-2019

With only two weekends remaining for the 18-19 Mumbai Season, the run of six race cards, makes one think that the maxim, less is more, is the order of the day at the RWITC, as racing winds down after a gruelling five months.

Six races a day used to be the exception rather than the rule, but with finances needed to be watched, it appears that a rupee saved is a rupee earned! The usual practice of dividing races has been done away with, except when the need to ensure at least six races are held on a day.

In this background, the running of the Dubai World Cup last Saturday brought into focus the huge gap between the management and resources to stage mega-events. The “World Cup” race day offered a staggering $35 million in prize money, or nearly Rs 250 crore, with the single $12 million World Cup race, offering prize money about twice the total payout by the RWITC over a full year!

The force behind Dubai’s success is Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Ruler of Dubai and a keen racing aficionado. The Ruling family’s Godolphin stable swept to four wins on World Cup Day, including the feature, where Thunder Snow became the first horse to win the Cup twice.

The RWITC stewards would do well to relook at the policy of distribution of prize money. Rewarding maiden two/three-year-olds with Class 1 stakes so early in their career, is a breeder oriented policy, and ought to be revisited.

At least in the short run, an incentive to new owners and/or coming up with a “fair play” prize, as in cricket, for trainers, owners and jockeys, based on a point system, may improve the declining image of the game and in sync with the fair racing mantra! 

The reducing horse strength at Mumbai is a reflection of the uncertainty on the future of the sport, which many feel is going through its darkest days. The current number at 939 is down from 1,000 and will probably test the 900 mark sooner or later. Surprisingly the two-year-olds arrivals have shown a marginal uptick to 232.

Syndication worked up to a point, but new ideas will have to be thought of to market the sport to those not that familiar with the game, to not only potential owners but also as racegoers, and especially to the Next Gen, who have to be lured with stories of the magic of horse racing.

Courtesy Vivek Jain TOI

Post Your reply

5 Replies

Ajoy Shah said ...

On : 05-04-2019 11:08 am

For some reason best known to rwitc,they closed all off course betting centers in Mumbai since almost a year. In today's time of online and advanced technology instead they should have Increased the centers. By closure they have definitely lost a sizable amount of betting and footfalls as not everyone goes to the course even if interested.

Nawab said ...

On : 04-04-2019 05:43 pm

A true alarming situation is increaseing by each passing day.Mr.Vivek Jain always came up for the resque of RWITC,whenever something negative surrounded the club.We are witnessing his role from the last about several years.This time the problem can only be solved, if the racing authorities at RWITC include the contribution of common punters,small owners etc.The off course betting centers,like in Lucknow can pull huge numbers on race days the operating head of this center works as a govt.employee,always treats punters in a manner that one decides not to visit this center,reason there is no supply of declaration to the punters,the race card costs twenty five rupees,no problem,but only few lucky punters get the race card,because they  are only five to ten in numbers,thereafter the same are not available for punters coming late.This is a very small piece of mismanagement at  a center overlooked by the tote officer at RWITC.

Aravind said ...

On : 04-04-2019 05:29 pm

I have been writing in this forum on improving race clubs here since long back. In India many citizens attracted to Lottery,Chit scheme,Share markets,IPL and money is poured in.but only in race courses it's declining.Why? It's becoz of poor administration and reluctant to hear suggestions,advices from experts. I even suggested to work out IPL former in racing to attract more youngsters to race course.i also in place such plan.but no one cares.its time to race clubs to wake up for very survival of clubs also increase revenue,and keep Breed industryire viable for future.i request all race clubs under one umbrella constitute an expert committee to work out strategies for future.Time is  running out.better now or never.

Monise said ...

On : 04-04-2019 05:07 pm

Very true sir a very good insight to what is happening and what is to come we have enough young enthusiastic who would most definitely love the sport if portrayed in the right manner why do we get so much crowds at derbies it’s because Its published in papers banners sports channels so we have to keep doing that and also make the sport of horse racing clean 

Ashok said ...

On : 04-04-2019 04:26 pm

First stewards need to be more straight and look into racing in a fair view,not penalising apprentice jockeys and letting go of bigger ones