NORM SNOWDEN ON THE AFTERMATH OF THE ATC AGM

aftermath

Well, the ATC AGM has come and gone and the Director election done and dusted. But the great tradition of Australian apathy came to the fore when less than 2000 Members voted, out of 15,500+ and only 2 or 3 hundred turned up and not all Members.

Julia Ritchie arrived, armed with an unassailable quota of proxies, no doubt claimed from the old school network of her days on the AJC Committee and giving her a mandate for her ideas and plans for the ATC.

I wonder if a certain senior member of Management might welcome an ally in Ms Ritchie as rumours persist about a push, albeit I was assured by Michael Crismale that no such push existed and that it was more the case of better utilizing the person’s best skills.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, Horse Racing | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

HONG KONG WONTONS, DING DONGS, THEN SOMES AND DIM SUMS

NEIL CALLAN IS NO DONKEY

NEIL CALLAN IS NO DONKEY 1

He’s a bit like a combination of The Scarlet Pimpernel and Zorro, but the emergence of Neil Callan to be one of the top riders in Hong Kong has surprised many- but, one doubts, it has caught the Irishman unawares.

NEIL CALLAN IS NO DONKEY 2

Today, Callan sits third- or, as he pronounces it, “turd”- on the Jockeys leaderboard after a double at the Valley on Wednesday where he also took out the Jockey Challenge.

NEIL CALLAN IS NO DONKEY 3

NEIL CALLAN IS NO DONKEY 4

As Hunter S Thompson would have written, What a strange, weird trip it’s been for Neil “Paddy” Callan aka “Donkey” who first came out to Hong Kong on the recommendation of that loveable rogue- fellow Irish jockey Johnny Egan- to test the waters four years ago. He then deputised for an indisposed rider in a HK International Jockey Challenge that led him to stay on a bit longer, a nine month stint last season, plus, of course, his first full season this year.

Continue reading

Posted in brett prebble, DOUGLAS WHYTE, GERARD MOSSE, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, JOAO MOREIRA, JOHN MOORE, JOHN SIZE, NASH RAWILLER, The horse racing industry, www.fasttrack.hk, zac purton | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

THE TOTALLY WARPED AND UNSTRATEGIC RACING ISSUE

UNSTRATEGIC RACING ISSUE 1

A VERY UNSTRATEGIC RACING NSW STRATEGIC PLAN

UNSTRATEGIC RACING ISSUE 2

The very latest incarnation of Racing NSW’s long list of Strategic Plans – the 2014 version released late last week by “you know who”, and given saturation print coverage including the obligatory editorial in last Friday’s edition by Druitt Street’s brother and sister in arms – Daddy Rupert’s Daily “Smellygraph”- has been clearly designed to hold a gun at the head of the NSW State Government.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, CHRIS WALLER, Horse Racing, Racing NSW | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

HONG KONG WONTONS, DING DONGS, THEN SOMES AND DIM SUMS

AN ODD ODE TO LAST SUNDAY

It was the Prelude to December 14
And the sun shone brightly last Sunday
All the big guns were there to do battle
It was a U2 Hum and Rattle

AN ODD ODE TO LAST SUNDAY 1

Alex Lai won the curtain raiser
On a horse that was barely known
Gold Talent took Race one out
And we were all left to wonder
Would it be one of those weird days
When horses without names won?
Would all those big guns fail to fire?
And happiness not be a war gun?

Continue reading

Posted in brett prebble, casper fownes, DOUGLAS WHYTE, HAPPY WEDNESDAY, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, JOAO MOREIRA, JOHN MOORE, JOHN SIZE, NASH RAWILLER, Racing NSW, The horse racing industry, Tony Cruz, zac purton | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

CRUZ CONTROL AND THE GOOD AMBASSADORS OF HK RACING

CRUZ CONTROL AND THE GOOD AMBASSADORS OF HK RACING  1

When Peniaphobia won the 1200 metres Jockey Club Sprint on Sunday, that cheering squad in one’s heart and head let out an almighty roar.

CRUZ CONTROL AND THE GOOD AMBASSADORS OF HK RACING  2

Firstly, it was a Katy Perry roar, a fist pump and two thumbs up to see Douglas Whyte be where he should -centerstage- after too much time playing second fiddle to some of those new kids on the block with a few going through a serious learning curve as to how it works in Hong Kong, to be careful of strangers bearing gifts and never forgetting the very recent past and close shaves some have managed to pry themselves from. These “sins” are never ever forgiven or forgotten.

Continue reading

Posted in casper fownes, DAVID FERRARIS, DOUGLAS WHYTE, FELIX COETZEE, GERARD MOSSE, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, JOAO MOREIRA, Tony Cruz | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NORM SNOWDEN LETS FLY ON THE ATC

Knockout blow

Well, the ATC committee elections are just a couple of days away and these are my final thoughts.

A thought came to mind a week or so ago and that was – what if the ATC did away with Members and just did the corporates ( Chairman’s Club, private boxes, club within a club, i.e. The Stables ), then fine dining room and pay to sit areas. The rest of the patrons would pay course entry and be free to roam what would be left of the course areas.

Of course, if the ATC did away with Members, a large chunk of income would fly out the window.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, Horse Racing | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

HONG KONG WONTONS, DING DONGS, THEN SOMES AND DIM SUMS

THE ODE TO WHAT WAS AND WHAT WILL BE

THE ODE TO WHAT WAS AND WHAT WILL BE 1

Last Wednesday was a train wreck
where winners were hard to find
They came from here, there and everywhere
Very few belonged on a winning line

THE ODE TO WHAT WAS AND WHAT WILL BE 2

Gun Pit became more of an armpit
And there was nothing Victorious around
And if looking for First Sight Love
Mate, it was nowhere to be found.

Continue reading

Posted in brett prebble, casper fownes, DOUGLAS WHYTE, GERARD MOSSE, HAPPY WEDNESDAY, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, JAMES MCDONALD, JOAO MOREIRA, JOHN MOORE, The horse racing industry, zac purton | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

THE “MAKES SENSE TO US” EMAIL OF THE DAY

MAKES SENSE

A bigger worry in the conditional Strategic Plan is the proposal to spend most of the hoped for additional money on prize money – few would quibble with lifting the stakes in the provincial and country, but why further huge increases for Saturday racing? Surely the ATC has clearly proven that throwing more money at Saturday prizemoney achieves nothing (other than benefiting a small minority – at least the money gets a wider spread in country and provincial).

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, HAPPY WEDNESDAY, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, Racing NSW | Tagged | 7 Comments

CAN THERE BE NIGHT RACING LIKE HAPPY WEDNESDAY IN OZ? TWO VIEWS- BUT THERE ARE MANY MORE SAYING, “NAH”.

CAN THERE BE 1

CAN THERE BE 2

CAN THERE BE 3

Dear Sir

Lets not give up…not yet.

I keep saying we need to take guidance from Happy Wednesday and see if we can adopt some of their clever marketing ideas in Sydney. I agree neither Randwick or Canterbury are anything like Happy Valley however we do have a concentrated population within close proximity to both venues. We have a significant Asian population living in close proximity to both venues……perhaps that’s the key.

Unfortunately RNSW recently released strategic plan is very reliant on government funding. For that reason its not a strategic plan I would adopt in my business.Does RNSW have a plan B…I doubt it. Its very easy to run an allegedly successful business which is funded by grants or shareholders money…..passive funding. In my opinion RNSW need to stick to being a regulator and let the clubs put on the show!

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, HAPPY WEDNESDAY, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Racing NSW, The horse racing industry | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

THE NIGHT AND DAY ISSUE

THE VERY DIFFERENT NIGHT RACING EXPERIENCE.

THE NIGHT AND DAY ISSUE 1

The prospect of night racing at Randwick has been raised again. This time by you know who. And similar to anything and everything that comes out of Druitt Street, there was the inevitable fine print. Yes, it would only be considered if the Baird Government came through with a lower tax rate to bring NSW racing on a par with the lower take out rate that the arch enemy in Victoria enjoys.

THE NIGHT AND DAY ISSUE 2

Fair enough, we understand the political games that are being played and the high stakes in this game of racing poker. But, political games don’t always deliver the preferred outcome, and in this instance, and not just in NSW, night racing is being hailed as the panacea to just about every imaginable problem that Australian thoroughbred racing faces.

Continue reading

Posted in Australian horse racing industry, HAPPY WEDNESDAY, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong Racing, Horse Racing, JOHN SIZE, MOONEE VALLEY, The horse racing industry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments