Representatives of the equine industry in New York state testified before a state assembly committee today on their concerns about how upcoming changes in the state’s gaming landscape could negatively effect horse racing and breeding.
According to a 2012 study commissioned by the State of New York, 33,000 fulltime workers – including trainers, breeders, track workers, hay farmers and other affiliated industries – are supported by the equine industry in the Empire State.
More than 47,000 people jammed into Saratoga Race Course on Saturday for the 144th running of the Travers Stakes, the largest crowd for the mid-summer derby since 2004. WAMC's Saratoga Springs Bureau Chief Lucas Willard brings us this piece about what a day at the races sounds like.
Since the inaugural meeting was held in August 1863, Saratoga Springs has been the scene of memorable horse races, often featuring legends of the sport. Although some of the epic moments are still familiar today, many of the triumphs and defeats that were once famous have been forgotten.
Susan Kayne, a Hudson Valley equestrian who created the TV series Unbridled andhosts Ireland Unbridled, was featured in a recent New York Times investigative report that uncovered rampant drugging in horse racing and the bureaucratic red tape that stands in the way of reform. The horse owner spoke with WAMC’s Alan Chartock about her case.
With less than 48 hours until the first race of the 2012 season at Saratoga Race Course – today we’re talking gambling.
While the Saratoga season is just beginning, already reports indicate Governor Andrew Cuomo is set to unveil the members of the New York Racing Association’s new board, whose installation was precipitated earlier this year after the naming of new president Ellen McClain without input from state officials, following the firing of former president and CEO Charles Hayward, an alleged party to a scandal that cost the betting public over $8 million.
The top two executives at the non-profit New York Racing Association, which operates New York’s three state-owned horse tracks, were fired last week amid allegations they knew the company was collecting more than the legal amount of so-called takeout on certain bets, costing winning bettors an estimated $8.5 million dollars.
The firings have called into question the idea of gambling and gaming in general, as Governor Andrew Cuomo calls for a constitutional amendment to allow Las Vegas style casinos in the state.