THE GUIDE TO AUSTRALIAN RACING ISSUE

By Keyser Soze

RIDE GUIDE RIDES OFF INTO THE SUNSET…

RIDE GUIDE 1

Try as hard as they might to “spin” their way out of it, those associated with the Ride Guide have a public relations disaster on their hands. Individually and collectively, its creator Chris Symons, their sponsorship brokerage company Unscriptd, and the Jockeys Association appear to have botched their process of negotiating an outcome which would have benefitted the entire racing community – the Governing Bodies Racing NSW and Racing Victoria, wagering operators including the tote operator Tabcorp and the corporate bookmaking sector, Owners and Trainers ( Remember them?), and last but certainly not the least – the Punter, who ultimately puts the food on the tables of every stakeholder in Australian racing.

Ultimately, the NSW and Victorian Stewards made the only sensible and rational decision available to them and banned the Ride Guide from becoming a reality. For once, they acted swiftly. For the Ride Guide to ever become a reality it would need major open heart surgery. It would also require Symons, Unscriptd, the Jockeys Association and it’s “man for all causes” in Des O’Keefe to acknowledge their arrogance in not properly consulting the Owners and Trainers Bodies. Duh. And double Duh, Einsteins.

RIDE GUIDE 2

Take the Owners and Trainers out of the equation and there would be no racing industry. And there would be several hundred Jockeys- Australia wide- joining the Centrelink dole queues and registering for the welfare handout that is the dole.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry | Leave a comment

WHAT “RIDE GUIDE” AND THE CIRCUS INVOLVED CAN LEARN FROM KATY PERRY AND BOB LEFSETZ

Read the blog below from respected and outspoken American music blogger Bob Lefsetz.

RIDE GUIDE 1

Simply change the music industry to the Australian horse racing industry.

Apple’s Tim Cook can be any of the racing administrators involved in the Ride Guide farce.

RIDE GUIDE 2

Music fans can be punters, and Katy Perry and her team can be the circus behind the flawed Ride Guide concept that has no concept, but pretends it does.

RIDE GUIDE 3

One hopes that all those overthinking this “Ride Guide” thing to death, when it has always had more holes in it than a slab of blue cheese, reads the blog below, have the penny finally drop, return to Fawlty Towers, and try to do some work that might even benefit those who keep horse racing alive: Owners, punters, racing fans and whatever we’re called. Peasants? The little people?

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, Horse Racing | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

THE “RIDE GUIDE GETS LOST” ISSUE

By Keyser Soze

“RIDE OUT” BECOMES BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN…

gets lost 1

The Australian’s Patrick Smith called for it to be outlawed, while the “Ride Guide’s” creator (?), jockey Chris Symons, the Kim Kardashian and Perez Hilton of Australian racing, donned his now-familiar self-promotion attire and made a vain attempt to describe his blatantly commercial arrangement with corporate bookmaker Ladbrokes as a way to “bring jockeys closer to their target audience”. Bollocks. Symons’ rabid self-promotion is getting tedious. It might have been fun two years ago, but he’s no Simon Cowell. Okay?

gets lost 2

The “Ride Guide” was described by Patrick Smith as an information service, developed by Chris Symons and managed by a sports company Unscriptd and exclusive to Ladbrokes, which allows Ladbrokes punters to click on to a jockeys silks, which triggers a video in which the rider assesses the horses’ chances in a race. It made its debut last weekend. The “brainchild” of Chris Symons? More like a brain freeze. But he’s a bit player in what is the mismanagement of racing, and where in all the diatribe spewed out, there’s zero mention of the OWNERS. You know, the owners? Those people who pay the bills would go along with THEIR horses chances being discussed? By their jockeys? And where do the trainers fit in? That Chris Symons’ flawed programming concept would go this far is mind boggling.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, Horse Racing, HORSE RACING AND SOCIAL MEDIA, The horse racing industry | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

THE “GOING TO THE DOGS” ISSUE

By Keyser Soze

BAITED BY THE ANIMAL ACTIVISTS

Politicians and Racing Administrators- and how many on both sides of the fence ever got their jobs other than through a raffle draw is open to debate- have much in common. Their reactive instincts generally lead to knee jerk responses to carefully contrived populist public opinion, often manipulated by agenda driven organizations and activists with a cause célèbre, and often lacking in a factual and reasoned foundation.

THE DOGS 2

Can there be a better example than the unravelling of the NSW State Government’s hysterical announcement last week banning greyhound racing in that state from July 1 2017? NSW Liberal Premier Mike Baird and his Deputy and Racing Minister Troy Grant shouldered arms at the announcement, which was based on a review conducted by a well-known NSW legal figure- Justice Michael McHugh- into greyhound racing following the outing of a joint Four Corners/Fairfax Media investigation into the abhorrent practice of ‘live’ baiting across the industry in many Australian States.

McHugh, according to a report in The Australian newspaper, is well-known in racing circles having chaired a Racing NSW Jockeys Benefit Scheme, and also as a member of a “legal eagles” betting syndicate. It appears McHugh, a respected member of the NSW legal fraternity, has a genuine interest in the thoroughbred code.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, PETER MOODY, Peter V'landys, The horse racing industry, Tommy Berry | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

THE DRAWING POWER OF KEI CHIONG

By Hans Ebert

When time for the Longines Hong Kong International Races rolls around again- and gawd knows, time flies- there will be another reason for taking in The Greatest Show On Turf: Kei Chiong.

kei 1

The Kei Chiong success story has happened almost faster than “Hiddleswift”, the overnight and very public displays of canoodling for each other between Actor Tom Hiddlestone and serial love-bingeing singer-songwriter Taylor Swift. “Hiddleswift”. Fiddlesticks. Same same.

kei 2

The difference between these two stories is that one is all about substance and discipline and determination and making something out of, where a year ago, existed nothing. The other has to do with the world’s preoccupation and obsession with the superficial love lives of celebrities.

kei 2v

In what has been an extraordinary few months, Kei Chiong has gone from being an average ten-pound claiming apprentice with the novelty factor of being the first female to be granted a riding license in Hong Kong in fifteen years, who many thought would not make the grade, to single-handedly- and some important background help- bringing Girl Power to racing- and not only Hong Kong racing. She’s Kung Fu Spice.

Continue reading

Posted in DOUGLAS WHYTE, HAPPY WEDNESDAY, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, JOAO MOREIRA, The horse racing industry, Tony Cruz | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

THE PRIORITIES ISSUE

THE PRIORITIES ISSUE

Nothing on Peter Moody, nothing on cobalt, nothing on who’s doing what to whom, no racing “exclusives”, no transparent politics, no tedious racing “stories” about the usual suspects, no social media muppets rabbiting on about what they cannot change.

All this means nothing in the grand scheme of things. None of this is going to help repair this very much broken circle of life.

Pray for France. Pray for Nice. Pray for the world. Be safe. Let’s get our priorities in order. And never back down to cowards. They never win.

Hans Ebert

Posted in Horse Racing, The horse racing industry | 1 Comment

BOB DYLAN’S 2015-2016 HONG KONG RACING SEASON REVISITED

By Hans Ebert

A Magic man and Hong Kong racing’s pinup girl
They turned the season around
Joao Moreira had new records to break
And Kei Chiong didn’t let all her new fans down

SEASON REVISITED 1

Joao created more new magic tricks
He pulled off many Houdini acts
Kei made Girl Power spicy again
And mentoring her was Felix The Cat

SEASON REVISITED 2

Forget about that recent shocking ride
When all the magic seemed to disappear
Brain freeze sometimes affects us all
Joao Moreira just forgot to shift the right gears

Continue reading

Posted in DOUGLAS WHYTE, FELIX COETZEE, HAPPY WEDNESDAY, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, HORSE RACING AND SOCIAL MEDIA, JOAO MOREIRA, JOHN MOORE, JOHN SIZE, The horse racing industry, Tony Cruz | 1 Comment

THE DAZED AND CONFUSED ISSUE

By Keyser Soze


CONFUSION GRIPS AUSTRALIAN RACING

DAZED 1

If the current Australian political environment has left people confused and vulnerable, then Racing just might be able to help make the situation worse.

If backflips are common in politics where leaders have been known to sell their souls for the proverbial “twenty pieces of silver”, backflips are endemic in racing. But time is running out for what once was the “sport of kings”. Problem is there are few monarchies which have survived the evolution of society, and racing had better get on it’s own “Tour De France” and hit the finish line yesterday, because time has nearly run out.

THE COMMON SENSE ISSUE 10

The left field announcement by NSW Premier Mike Baird banning Greyhound racing in NSW from July 1 2017 has left absolutely no doubt that “big brother” is watching- and watching very, very closely. Sport is no longer immune from much-needed scrutiny relating to its capability to chart its own course of destiny. And Racing has run out of it’s “nine lives”. It had better get its act together. And faster than Black Caviar and Chautauqua put together.

DAZED 3

Racing – its administrators, Chief Executives and Boards of Management, its participants – jockeys and trainers, in particular, have been in denial just about very aspect of the industry – its funding, its obligations to animal welfare and fundamentally its Integrity. Racing in Australia has, and still is, very much an old boy’s club, where grubby back room deals determine Board and Chief Executive appointments, contracts, the creation of bureaucratic empires and rancid cliques created and moulded to resist change and protect the self-serving agendas and protect the vested financial interests and stakes of racing’s older and middle aged versions of their own “wolves of wall street”.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, Horse Racing, HORSE RACING AND SOCIAL MEDIA, Racing NSW, The horse racing industry | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

IS PERTH READY FOR A NEW MOVEMENT?

By Hans Ebert

They were almost all there in Perth- the leading concert promoters in the region, the usual coterie of music executives who always find a way to attend one of these conferences, mainly for the free ride, and to check out the five-star hotel bar, and trailing behind them were the wannabes, groupies and hangers-on of the music industry in Australasia.

MOVEMENT 1

As always, missing were the Chinese music industry leaders. To them, they had and still have better things to do. To them, these tribal gatherings have always been a waste of time and an excuse for, mainly, the “gweilos” (foreign devils) to get together and talk the talk knowing it will all be more Much Ado About Nothing. It’s chump change time. What made this particular music conference different, however, was the Big Picture hanging in front of it that was truly visible. Maybe not to all.

MOVEMENT 2

After years of music conferences around the region held under various disguises and guises like the daft “Save The Music” non-starter, here was one that actually made sense, and not another exercise in transparent flim flamming by charging participants well over US$1,500 to attend. Of course, the costs for music executives to attend were picked up by head office. For the organisers, it was and still is a business model with the outsized pie divided where five were for me, the organiser of the event, and none for you, the participant. Music didn’t and doesn’t matter. It was always unequal parts substance and flatulence, and, not unlike the lame racing conferences that attract the retired and semi-retired worker bees and supercilious hashtag dweebs, nothing of substance was ever achieved. But this music conference was different.

MOVEMENT 3

Called OneMovement, and first held in Perth in 2009, here was something that looked, felt and smelt like being more than another toothless music gabfest where speakers spoke, few listened, other meetings were being held outside of where the conference was being held, and where name cards were exchanged, promises made, where everyone was a “bro” or “dude”, and then everyone went back to their respective corners and nothing happened.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Racing NSW, The horse racing industry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

AND THE GOLD BAUHINIA STAR GOES TO…

By Hans Ebert

BAUHINIA 1

Let’s just hope that Hong Kong Jockey Club CEO Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges being awarded a prestigious Gold Bauhinia Star last week in the Hong Kong government’s annual and exclusive list of those who have contributed towards enhancing the lives of the local community, and makeup of this city, isn’t confined to the racing pages of the newspapers or becomes lost in the sometimes confusing buffet on the HKJC website. The reasons for this honour need to be understood by everyone out there. It’s good for the recipient, good for the Club, and good for Hong Kong.

BAUHINIA 2b

This is a huge recognition by, yes, the Hong Kong government, and let’s not be naive, been given the blessing of the Central Government in Mainland China in recognition of the guiding role the CEO of the HKJC plays in the city through its Charities Trust- and its commitment to the present and future of this place many of us call home. And these days, home is going through some important renovations, something that makes the timing of receiving the Gold Bauhinia Star even more relevant.

BAUHINIA 3

Ensuring how the horse racing and charities sides of the HKJC work in a seamless and holistic way is no walk in the park. It’s requires one to be fleet of floot, and even more fleet of mind. This is where the leadership skills of Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges comes in- leadership skills, he makes look deceivingly laid back. This is because of his people skills, and ability to really listen to people no matter who they are. One can only wish that some of his senior executives had this same character trait. But they’re busy tripping over their own massive egos for this to happen. Let’s move on…

Continue reading

Posted in HAPPY WEDNESDAY, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, The horse racing industry, WINFRIED ENGELBRECHT-BRESGES | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment