Sounds Like Good News for Racing at Monmouth Park in 2012?

December 16, 2011 03:00pm
 In an article posted at 4:39pm, December 16th, reported that a tentative deal has been struck to keep Monmouth Park open in 2012.  Proposed is a longer meet with purses that will be funded only by money produced from wagering.  That will mean substantially lower purses, until a new private lease holder is found. You can read the entire article here - 
Monmouth Park Deal Calls for 141 Racing Days
Monmouth Park in New Jersey will hold a 141-day meet in 2012 while the state reopens the bidding for a long-term lease of the track under a deal that was discussed on Friday between the state’s horsemen and the office of Gov. Chris Christie, officials of the horsemen’s organization said.
The horsemen’s representatives said that the deal was substantially complete late on Friday, though final approvals of the agreement were still not in place. Christie has set a Monday deadline for the horsemen and the state to agree on a deal for the 2012 meet, threatening that he would close the track if an agreement had not been reached.
Under the deal, horsemen at Monmouth will run for “generated purses” in 2012, meaning purse distribution will be determined solely by the revenue raised from betting. As a result, overnight purses at Monmouth over 141 days this year will likely average approximately $150,000 to $175,000 a day, a sharp decline from average overnight purses this year of approximately $400,000 during a 71-day meet.


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Morris bailey pulled out I heard because he did not want to put up with 12 million in losses but would be willing to go for 6 to 8 million in losses. He is back in the picture as one of the investors on the no horsemens side. Brunetti does make a couple of valid legal points
Yea, I read the articles about Brunetti's lawsuit. Who knows what really went on throughout this process.
I don't know if anyone is aware but Brunetti has filed a lawsuit challenging the NJ horsemen running Monmouth. He was the 2nd highest bidder to Morris Bailey. At first it looked like Monmouth might not be able to open in May, but it will open. His challenge is that when Bailey pulled out the state should have openned the bidding back up. Also the deal was no subsidies were to be granted to run the meet. NJ sports authority is giving large loans to the NJ horsemen to run Monmouth.
And not allow divide and conquer strategy to succeed as almost happened here.
Everyone in New Jersey who loves horse racing should be thankful to Gural. It also should be a lesson to both TB and standardbred horsemen that their interests are one and the same and the must stand together on issues that affect the tracks.
I agree with you Andy about the 141 days of racing. It is too much. Purses and quality will go down. Bailey was promising $400k a day for purses if the track ran 74 days. Forbes and other horsemen were against it. This is one of the clashes that Bailey had with the TB group in NJ and why he wanted out. Now the purses are going to be taken from track revenue, which I don't think is a good idea. The TB group signed off on the simulcasting with Gural and would not let that hold Gural up from opening The Meadowlands. Also Sweeney in the NJ legislature is also making sure that the simulcasting does not sink the Meadowlands. To me the ironic aspect of the entire matter of both tracks is that Christie and Hansen thought that by tying the two tracks together and go after the Meadowlands first, thinking it was the weaker link, they did not count on Gural coming in at the last moment with a group of investors . By allowing the meadowlands a respite, Gural allowed The TB horsemen to get it together to save Monmouth.
On the contrary, buckpasser, I really wanted to hear your analysis of the situation, as you seem to know quite a bit about what is goin on and that you have a sincere interest in NJ racing. I don't like the 141 days on racing. If the purses are going down then don't further dilute the resources with more racing days.
There is an article in the Standardbredowners of NJ website that Sweeney is making sure that Problems at Monmouth do not impact Meadowlands. And also he has proposed that the simulcasting issues not affect Meadowlands continued operations. This is the strongest sign yet that people are recognizing that the tracks outcomes have to be separated.
Hopefully Monmouth will be ok. I do think that the letter from the City of Oceanport helped here alot. I think it reminded Christie what happened to revenues and jobs in the area. My only hope is that Frank Stronach does not get involved. While Christie would have his hands dealing that mercurial individual, so frankly would everyone else.
Andy. I am thrilled by it. I do not want to see any race track go down. And if you thought I did, you are wrong. But what happened here is that is that the ties between the two tracks was broken and the deals have now moved separately. Which is a good thing, because I think that Hanson and Christie tied the two tracks together so they could play harness and thoroughbred owners against each other. Gural, according to the harness sites is signing Monday for the Meadowlands and will be approved Tuesday for the lease. Which is good news for the harness community as there meet opens Jan 6 or 7. The reason the horsemen wanted to meadowlands at Monmouth was to get some of the revenue from simulcasting etc. to supplement purses. It is interesting because I re read an article in Hoofbeats, the standardbred publication written by Bill Finley and he basically says that Bailey was wanting out very early in the process. The article while published in August 2011, details the original meetings among Christie, Bailey, Forbes Gural etc. you should read it, because it shows how disorganized the thoroughbred side was. Granted this article is written from the harness side, but there is alot of interesting day to day.
buckpasser, I'd love to hear what you think of this proposal.
On again, off again ... hopefully this will materialize. As I have said before, I cannot imagine Monmouth shutting the doors.

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In the 70’s I was another one of those kids that went to the track with their fathers, and I immediately became enthralled with the excitement and challenges of handicapping.  And then the charisma and dominance of Secretariat gave me a hero to follow. To this day, I still get emotional when I hear Chic Anderson’s call of the 1973 Belmont, “Secretariat is moving like a tremendous machine”.

There have been many great horses run at the shore. In 1976 I watched Majestic Light win the Monmouth Invitational, now the Haskell, in track record time, defeating Honest Pleasure, the big favorite who was in from New York.  This was one of my first big wins at the track.
In the 80’s, as a disciple of Andy Beyer, I made my own speed figures because they were not available to the public. Needless to say I visited Monmouth frequently to test out the “figs”.
The 90’s allowed me to learn about the backstretch as a part owner of a few claimers that were stabled at Philadelphia Park.  Not a typical owner, I mucked stalls, cooled out the horses, and watched morning works.  Also, I met my wife and discovered that her grandfather bred, owned, and raced thoroughbreds on the West Virginia, Maryland circuit.  Today our office is decorated with winner’s circle pictures and a vast collection of Kentucky Derby glasses.
Today’s electronic age makes it so easy to gather information about racing.  I hope you use this blog to learn about Racing at the Jersey Shore.


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