By Keyser Soze
IS RACING IN AUSTRALIA CAPABLE OF REINVENTING ITSELF?
Simply NO. The evidence in the “form guide’ suggests the odds of reinventing itself to expectations of a very much more demanding and unforgiving demographic in today’s socio-economic jungle are as distant as from where we are to Land’s End.
Whilst every other sport – from the larger mainstream to the minnows- have consciously succeeded in challenging themselves and reinvented their appeal and offerings, racing does not know how to extricate itself from the time warp which it has entrapped itself in, to its own detriment.
The recent news that the AFL is about to launch its own version of 22/20 cricket or rugby sevens – a shortened and faster version of Aussie Rules called AFL X, should send shivers down the spines of every racing administrator in Australia. That is unless they are still hibernating in their purpose-built igloos.
AFL X will take Aussie Rules fans and fanatics into a unique state of nirvana, satisfying their craving and hunger for their sport to extend it’s annual seasonal shelf life beyond the traditional six months. AFL X could well be the nail in racing’s coffin in the football crazy states of Victoria, West Australia, South Australia and Tasmania. Remember Tasmania? It still supposedly has a racing industry. And with the inroads that the AFL is making in New South Wales, Australians will most certainly vote with their feet as they have done with 20/20 cricket and embrace the hybrid Aussie Rules format.