Negli Archivi – Sei
sabato 19 marzo
Questo è per Phil ovunque è andato:
venerdi 18 marzo
Sal heard that Minister of Finance Joe Ceci will be at Century Downs on Saturday March 19, 2016 with an announcement about the MOU for slot revenue sharing.
Sal says that some Alberta horse industry participants have been proactive in keeping the current provincial government apprised of the value of the horse industry to this province.
Excepted from Hansard 16 marzo
Delaney Veterinary Services
Cortes-Vargas: Mr. Speaker, I recently toured an outstanding veterinary facility in my constituency. It was my pleasure to recognize Delaney Veterinary Services. The passion that their staff has for equine care is evident from the moment you walk in. I was greeted by a caring staff, who shared with me how it all started.
Dr. Lana Delaney grew up on a farm outside of Grande Prairie, Alberta. She grew up around horses. Her family has always been active in thoroughbred horse racing, and in 2008 Dr. Delaney opened up Delaney Veterinary Services, which works exclusively with horses, donkeys, and mules. It started by offering ambulatory services to the equine community but now has become a state-of the-art, full-service medical, reproductive, and surgical referral centre of western Canada. Delaney specializes in acupuncture, performance, dentistry, and reproduction and is the only hospital providing multiple-board-certified specialists 24 hours a day. They provide extensive emergency care for all types of conditions,
including wounds, fractures, eye injuries, and acute lameness and infection.
I’m very proud to have Delaney Veterinary Services, central and north Alberta’s premier equine veterinary facility, in my constituency, and I look forward to continuing to support their work.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker.
Thank you Delaney Veterinary Services.
Questo è per i nove:
Sal says gli uccelli look a lot like buzzards circling waiting to check le ossa for any slim pickings.
Questo è per Phil ovunque è andato:
giovedi 17 marzo
Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.
William Butler Yeats
Questo è per Phil ovunque è andato:
Sal’s nonno had cucina curtains like that.
Sal’s driving home l’altra notte and the radio station Sal was listening to was giving away 2 free ducats to the upcoming Batman Superman spat if you could give the best story about why they are spatting. Sal thought that maybe it was a beef about territory.
The winner’s reason was that Batman’s alter ego ultra-conservative Bruce Wayne was a Donald Trump supporter and Superman being an illegal alien resented that.
Sal knows that Phil would have chosen the contestant who said they were spatting cuz You Gotta Fight For You Right to Party.
mercoledi 16 marzo
St. Mary’s High School Edmonton AB
Are you kidding me. They are the “bombardier ” of Edmonton. Now they are asking to forgive the debt and carry on with their stupid project. The city should sell expo centre to private enterprises and disband Northlands. Tim Reid is a joke. Does he think that all members of city council and the tax payers of Edmonton are idiots. And if they fudge with the books to show that thoroughbred racing didn’t make them money they should be investigated. With all the slot machines in the grandstand, how could they lose money. Why wouldn’t they want to keep thoroughbred racing and the slots for a few more years while they try to find an answer weather they should exit or not. Colours Restaurant is one of the biggest in the country. Even when it’s Half full (during thoroughbred race meet) it is profitable and when it’s full it generates big dollars (something Northlands is not accustomed to). Why wouldn’t they keep racing going until their rope runs out? Because they are not business people and that being the case, should not be allowed to sponge off the tax payers of our city now or in the future
Coun. Ben Henderson, who was on council when the Expo loan was issued, said it was always the city’s understanding the conference centre would stand on its own.
“The Expo building was going to be paid for by revenues from the Expo building,” he said.
Henderson said when council made the decision to support the downtown arena, Northlands also intended to compete with the new facility.
“At that time Northlands was fairly determined that they were going to keep running Rexall,” he said.
Coun. Dave Loken said it’s a big ask.
“Quite frankly, I am ticked that they are coming to us at the eleventh hour,” he said.
Edmonton city council voted on a motion Tuesday to have administration further evaluate 11 aspects of Northlands’ Vision 2020 plan. That report will be presented to an executive committee sometime in August, and there will be an opportunity for public input at that time.
“There is a ton of work to do between now and August,” Mayor Don Iveson said after the motion passed.
In Sal’s neighbourhood if you couldn’t pay your markers you didn’t come back asking for more.
I have lived near Borden Park, south of the city-owned Northlands site, for more than 35 years.
With the construction of the downtown arena, Northlands is faced with reinventing itself. Its plan proposes a visionary and imaginative repurposed Rexall Place, an enlarged Agricom of uncertain value, and a massive and completely redundant 140,000 capacity open-air concert venue.
Northlands has had several years to chart its future but we are told the city must confirm its support for this new plan in a few days, spurred on and justified, no doubt, by a survey commissioned and funded by Northlands. Surely the communities surrounding Northlands, and city taxpayers and the province deserve a much more thoughtful, thorough and independent assessment of these proposals.
Graydon McCrea, Edmonton
Save city’s horse racing heritage
The Oilers’ new arena should not blind Edmontonians to the magnificent 137-year history in our city that Northlands represents. The organization is more than the building that hosted a hockey team for 40 years. Northlands’ portion of the funding for the Coliseum came from profits of a professional sport that predated hockey on the site: horse racing.
A race track existed outside the fort, before the Exhibition began in 1879 and served to connect traders and indigenous peoples doing business in the way all sports can connect us. Alberta literally celebrated its birth at the race track in the flats.
The glory days of large betting allowed Northlands (then the Edmonton Exhibition Association — rebranding has the effect of institutional memory loss) to repurpose its share (as a community not-for-profit agricultural society) into the funding of other projects deemed beneficial to Edmonton.
Now that our city has made its choice about supporting professional hockey, it should not sacrifice a community not-for-profit agricultural society or the facilities and history of horse racing.
Sandy VanRiper, Edmonton
martedi 15 marzo
Beware the ides of March.
Et tu Brute?
The ides of March brings us to 17 days left in the current slot revenue sharing MOU with the Alberta provincial government including the ides of March.
The ides of March brings us Edmonton Northlands presenting their Vision 2020 to Edmonton City Council Tuesday March 15, 2016.
Sal says that for any person attending the Council session a very salient question would be how will Edmonton Northlands be proceeding with construction on any portion of this plan in 2016 when their 2016 Capital Budget that will also be presented to Council on Tuesday March 15, 2016 does not show any major expenditures as outlined in the Vision 2020 Plan.
Have you ever noticed that when the fishes stop swimming they start to smell.
During the downtown arena talks, there was much debate about keeping Northlands whole. But the organization has moved past that debate, said Reid. “This is bigger than keeping Northlands whole. I think this is an initiative that keeps northeastern Edmonton whole.”
In Sal’s neighbourhood if you couldn’t pay back your markers you didn’t come back asking for more.
In Sal’s neighbourhood the guys with the best batting averages weren’t always batting stickball.
During the downtown arena talks, there was much debate about keeping Northlands whole. But the organization has moved past that debate, said Reid. “This is bigger than keeping Northlands whole. I think this is an initiative that keeps northeastern and the rest of the city of Edmonton in the hole.”
Full fields, three graded stakes, and quality horses helped Tampa Bay Downs register record total pari-mutuel handle for one program March 12.
Sal say that number is even more impressive when you realize that Tampa Bay Downs was going up against a $3,000,000.00 Rainbow Pick6 carryover at Gulfstream Park and many fans who were busy preparing for the vote in the Presidential Primary on Tuesday.
lunedi 14 marzo
Tampa Bay Downs provides one of my favorite days of live racing for many reasons.
It has attractive and well maintained facilities on both the front and back sides of the racetrack.
The ownership and management teams are deeply experienced and focused on all the constituencies that make up a successful race-day: their staff, the owners, the trainers and their staff, the jockeys, the breeders and, perhaps most importantly, the racing customers.
Throughout the track there is an extremely friendly customer service environment.
High-quality and attractive racing surfaces are viewed with clear sight lines from virtually all of the seats in the grandstand/clubhouse.
A beautiful, large open paddock area is situated just north of the grandstand for easy viewing as the horses prepare to go out on the track.
The quality of racing exceeds the financial structure of the purses.
Over the last decade, management has reduced its takeout structure of the betting menu from one of the highest in the country to one of the lowest in most betting pools. Here is an article from our friends at the Paulick Report that reflects the philosophy of General Manager Peter Berube on takeout.
domenica 13 marzo
Sal’s gotta beef with the PM of Canada.
Sal read all of the press clippings about Justin’s recent testa a testa with the President of the United States and nowhere did Sal see the most important topics for the city of Chicago and the state of Illinois – get the jiggies out of Hawthorne and get Kentucky Derby point recognition for the Illinois Derby.
Trump belongs in a banana republic. And from the looks of what happened last night, that may be what America is becoming.
Eventually, all of the contempt sentences and the riot charges were either dismissed by higher courts or dropped by the government. At the time, it was the Trial of the Century, but in the end, the Chicago Seven Trial seemed to mean nothing at all.
Questo è per Phil:
That men do not learn very much from the lessons of history is the most important of all the lessons of history.
Before Sal gets into the current state of thoroughbred racing in the province of Alberta Sal’s gonna remind Alberta racing enthusiasts of the days when Albertans would buy thoroughbreds that could compete in the top US races and bring those horses to Northlands Park and Stampede Park and what was then called Exhibition Park to race. Thoroughbreds like the 1979 San Felipe winner Pole Position owned by Eldorado Stables, trained by George E “Goodie” Goodwin and ridden by Sandy Hawley.
Herb Ollive most often rode Pole Position including wins in the 1979 B. C. Premiers Championship Stakes and the 1979 B. C. Derby at Exhibition Park.
Pole Position was owned by a syndicate of anywhere from 3 – 10 members depending on who’s spinning the yarn and Phil’s met about 50 of them. Funny thing about the syndicate is that at least 50 of them were the ones who found and purchased Pole Position.
The syndicate brought Pole Position back to Alberta as a stallion.
Beware the Ides of March.
Et Tu, Brute?
Sal attended one of Edmonton Northlands’ open houses last weekend and after listening to what was said and what was not said and reflecting and drawing inferences from what was said and what was not said Sal thinks that Edmonton Northlands Vision 2020 is a tad less Pie In The Sky than he thought before. Some or many of their ideas will come to fruition and many will come to fruition in modified manners but what Sal still finds most Pie in the Sky is a timeline to have the project completed by 2020 when what Edmonton Northlands has are pretty architectural renderings with no blueprints or engineering drawings, a not very robust market to absorb the commercial and residential components, no financial commitments from any level of government, $48 million debt on the Expo Centre and everything must be approved by Edmonton City Council. Sal also thinks there’s a tonnellata o due of politics being played behind the scenes.
Sal lauds Tim Reid and Edmonton Northlands for proposing a plan that has generated controversy and conversation in the city of Edmonton rather than just continuing to bob on the water like a cork with its hand out for the next government sustenance cheque. That said Vision 2020 will require sustenance from all levels of government for the continued viability of Edmonton Northlands.
The Alberta horsemen appear rather dissatisfied with Edmonton Northlands proposed plan to close racing after 2016, but attendere e ascoltare with the emphasis being on the latter action. Sal’s sources say that during the Monday meeting where the crowd was predominately dissatisfied thoroughbred participants Tim Reid was bombarded with complaints about poor food service and quality, inept management, lack of maintenance and repair in the barns, lack of marketing and promotion, brutal customer service and myriad other complaints that Tim Reid did not either deflect or defend until he became exasperated and stated that Northlands had a good team. Sal thinks he’s been watching too many Oilers games.
Yet the most vociferous of all complaints from the horsemen was that Northlands Park was leaving the horse racing business and leaving them high and dry.
As much as the horsemen want to bash Northlands Park the horsemen also realize there is no other alternative that would alleviate their present plight. Monopolies and lack of competition create frightening dependencies and until a white knight steps up the horsemen have 2 choices: bad or none.
What bothers Sal is that the only party with financial clout that could have compelled Northlands Park to perform better and use funds differently was Horse Racing Alberta and the root causes of the problems in the horse racing industry are the failure of Shirley McClellan and Rick LeLacheur to follow the legislated mandate and to ensure that funds that were entrusted to Horse Racing Alberta were allocated and spent properly.
The Alberta horsemen appear most dissatisfied with Edmonton Northlands giving them such short notice about Edmonton Northlands proposed plan to close racing after 2016. Sal’s been gleaning through Phil’s archives and the horsemen have only themselves, Shirley McClellan, Rick LeLacheur and Horse Racing Alberta to blame for the lack of notice.
Phil’s been warning about the phalanx of icebergs off the starboard bow but nobody has been paying attention. Even Mucka Singh’s comments have constantly referred to Edmonton Northlands March 2016 target for its new plan and the very distinct possibility that that new plan would not include horse racing. The ostriches with their heads in the sand may have thought that Phil and Mucka Singh were acting like Chicken Little, but Edmonton Northlands recent plans could mean nuclear winter for the horse racing industry in Alberta.
Tim Reid advised the open house that he had given Rick LeLacheur and the Board at Horse Racing Alberta information that Edmonton Northlands future plans may not include horse racing far before the plans were made public, but neither Rick LeLacheur nor Shirley McClellan appear to have brought these plans to the attention of the thoroughbred industry nor the standardbred industry nor anybody else.
Why didn’t Shirley McClellan and Rick LeLacheur act when they first heard about the possibility of Northlands Park not racing in 2017 and not racing standardbreds in 2016.
If you’d like to ask them here’s their e-mail addresses:
Shirley McClellan – firstname.lastname@example.org
Rick LeLacheur – email@example.com
From the December 2015 ASHA Board meeting minutes it looks like ASHA did not know about Edmonton Northlands plans to close racing after 2016 and not race the standardbreds at Northlands Park in 2016.
Tim Reid couched most of his comments and made only veiled references to Horse Racing Alberta, but from Sal’s listening between the lines the comments coming from one of the Board of Directors of Horse Racing Alberta himself were most revealing. Sal may be reading too much into what Tim Reid didn’t say but one point he did make is that:
Horse Racing Alberta has no plan for the improvement of horse racing.
Sal’s been gleaning through Phil’s archives and Phil’s been constantly critical of the performance of Horse Racing Alberta and the performance of its Chair – Rick LeLacheur and its CEO – Shirley McClellan.
However, the simple comment from Tim Reid, the CEO of Edmonton Northlands that Edmonton Northlands could not plan for the future of horse racing at Edmonton Northlands because:
Horse Racing Alberta has no plan for the improvement of horse racing
is a far more scathing indictment of the failure of Horse Racing Alberta to fulfill its mandate than anything Phil, Mucka or Sal has ever said.
Not only does Horse Racing Alberta have no plan for the improvement of horse racing there’s 19 days including oggi remaining in the current Memorandum of Understanding with the province of Alberta that governs the slot revenue split and Horse Racing Alberta has failed to have the Memorandum renewed in any form. The current powers that be could not work out an extension to the memorandum when their cronies were in power so Sal’s not hopeful for the current powers to work anything out now.
The current crises in the horse racing Alberta exemplifies why the current model of governance at Horse Racing Alberta must be scrapped. It’s cozy for Edmonton Northlands Park CEO Tm Reid to claim that Edmonton Northlands could not plan for the future of horse racing at Edmonton Northlands because:
Horse Racing Alberta has no plan for the improvement of horse racing,
but an Edmonton Northlands representative is part and parcel of the Board of Directors of Horse Racing Alberta that has no plan for the improvement of horse racing. Phil remembers Anne Bancroft in one of her later roles chastising her son for cheating her out of his life then blaming her for not being there. If Edmonton Northlands wants Horse Racing Alberta to have a plan for the improvement of horse racing then bring that up at a Board meeting and get working on it. Like the old hippy saying – If you’re not part of the solution then you’re part of the problem.
When the Alberta Racing Corporation was still around the funding model for slot revenue shared with the horse racing industry was set up to be:
15% – operator to cover the operation of the slots;
33 1/3% – government for general revenues;
33 1/3% – HRA for their operating costs, purses and to improve the racing;
18% – Discretionary grants from Horse Racing Alberta to the operators to cover:
operating costs, infrastructure improvements, marketing and improvement of the industry. These funds were to be earmarked and monitored.
Horse Racing Alberta has failed to use both the 33 1/3% and the 18% to improve racing, improve infrastructure, marketing and improvement of the industry and has failed it its mandate to properly earmark and monitor the funds it received.
These funds were not meant to be used to repair the boards at the Saddledome, cover shortages at the Expo Centre, build a non-compliant facility at Lacombe or repay capital costs for Century Downs. If they were and are being used for these purposes heads need to roll and the heads that need to roll are Shirley McClellan, Rick LeLacheur and every member of the accounting department at Horse Racing Alberta.
The longer that Alberta PM Rachel Notley and Minister Joe Ceci leave these persons in their positions, the less confidence the people of Alberta have in Alberta PM Rachel Notley and Minister Joe Ceci’s ability to clean up the mess this province is in and get it on the path to recovery.
Remember when you were a kid and built models of ship, filled up the bathtub ready for battle only to have all the ships sink to the bottom without a single shot fired. That’s what happens to models, they don’t work.
Phil and Sal have pointed out on numerous occasions that the current governance model for Horse Racing Alberta is so abounding with conflicts of interest that it is unworkable and needs to be scrapped, trimmed and rebuilt. Horse Racing Alberta also must be subject to the supervision of the Alberta auditors to ensure the funds to it are allocated efficiently and properly in accordance with the mandate set out in the legislation. The revamped legislation must clearly and concisely set out the mandate and powers of the new body as scrawl on the inside of a matchbook cover from the St. Louis hotel just doesn’t cut it anymore.
Edmonton Northlands’ Vision 2020 will be presented to Edmonton city council on Tuesday, March 15, 2016 and that’s the start of the process for the approval and once improved the implementation of the plan. There will be more discussion and meetings with the horse groups and every other affected party in the upcoming months.
Sal says there will be thoroughbred racing at Northlands Park until mid October in 2016, thoroughbred racing at Northlands Park in 2017 and perhaps in 2018. 2019 and beyond is when Sal’s crystal balls start to cloud over with nuclear winter.
With the current crises in horse racing in Alberta hanging over this province it’s incumbent on Rick LeLacheur and Shirley McClellan to call emergency meetings of all horsemen, not just their invited toadies and fantoccios, to be held at the city of Edmonton and the city of Calgary. These meetings must be called before March 31, 2016 and if they’re not called and publicized, then both Shirley McClellan and Rick LeLacheur must resign immediately.
The February 23, 2016 emergency meeting where Shirley and Rick invited only a select group, mainly their toadies and fantoccios was a joke. A meeting was required in early 2015 when Edmonton Northlands plans were first rumoured to not possibly include horse racing and Shirley and Rick did nothing, but made sure their pay cheques continued to be cashed.
Ci sentiamo dopo.
Esquirol Farms is being offered FOR SALE. The entire operation can be purchased as a “turn key” equine operation. Everything is for sale. Mares and Yearlings, 156 acres of land with large 5 bedroom house and farming equipment. Please contact Pierre for further information. 780-603-7681 780-603-7681 for more information.
Until further notice, we are business as usual. Right now we have started into our 2016 foaling and breeding season!
Sal attended the Friday night fights at the Shaw Conference Centre. Food, services and prices were so much better than Edmonton Northlands it’s not hard to see why so many functions in Edmonton chose the Shaw over Edmonton Northlands’ Expo Centre. Seems to Sal that the Expo Centre gets the crumbs from the Shaw and the functions too big for the Shaw to handle. Not a tale of two cities but a tale of the good, the bad and the ugly in one city.
Re. “Horse racing supporters question Northlands plan,” March 8
I think the problem is that Northlands is not doing enough work in promoting horse racing in the city. Yes, Northlands did advertise, but they have to do more than that.
Look at racecourses in other cities and see how they make horse racing a success. Nottingham Racecourse in the United Kingdom, Longchamp Racecourse in Paris and the Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto are all racecourses near or in a city. They use horse racing as a magnet to attract many other events as well.
The Sapporo, Japan, racecourse recently upgraded in 2014. They add on a leisure facility that can be enjoyed by families. Longchamp just closed down for major renovation. Their new facility will accommodate up to 60,000 spectators and the new design will amaze you. Think again, Northlands. The racetrack is a unique asset that nobody has in the city. Horse racing can be a superb revenue generator. If the Japanese and French can do it, so can we.
Paul Cheung, Edmonton
TIHR: You gave a pretty detailed and positive presentation Thursday, can you summarize the main points for those that didn’t attend or watch the webcast?
JC: The key takeaways from my state of New York breeding and racing:
The New York foal crop is up 33 percent in from 2011 to 2015. The only state in the U.S. with such growth.
31 percent of the dollar amount earned in breeder awards is done so based on racing at Aqueduct.
49 percent of the number or quantity of breeder awards are earned based on racing at Finger Lakes.
48 percent of the restricted races run by NYRA occur at Aqueduct (324 of 680).
In 2015 there was $44.5 million dollars distributed in restricted purse money in New York.
New York-breds earn 44 percent of the total purse money at Aqueduct, 32 percent at Belmont, 23 percent at Saratoga and 73 percent at Finger Lakes.
New York-breds account for 55 percent of all starts at New York racetracks and make up 45 percent of NYRA’s starts and 70 percent of Finger Lakes’.
New York-bred yearling sales have gone from $10 million to $29 million or 189 percent from 2010 to 2015.
Sal says most tracks would be happy with a group that brings too many participants to the parade.
The first thing you need to know about Lodge, as a business, is that the company is just as dedicated to — and just as successful at — innovation, efficiency and quality control as any big publicly traded company. In fact, I find myself wondering if all those management consultants — with all their Six Sigmas and “lean manufacturing processes” and whatnot — might do well to visit South Pittsburg. They might learn a thing or two.
Sal was wondering if Tim Reid or anyone at Edmonton Northlands has contacted Mucka Singh about reviving the old Stampede / Klondike Wrestling circuit.
Questo è per Pam: