Turn it up!

The passing of Racing Reform Bill means racing can now undergo major change.

Many industry members have high hopes for the rejuvenation of the industry. Others are more sceptical and question whether too much will change.

I am hopeful widespread change will come and it will be effective.

Of course, that means a lot of uncertainty.

It has me wondering about how a range of industry issues could be addressed.

What does the future of jumps racing in the South Island look like?

Low horse numbers and a critical lack of suitable riders have many questioning the future of jumps racing in the South Island.

There is a considerable investment of time needed to make a jumper, though the prizemoney currently offered is attractive.

The question is, is there enough interest for the southern industry to rally around and rejuvenate jumps racing or will it simply die out in the coming seasons?

Will harness racing authorities continue to ignore industry cries for handicapping changes?

Trainers pleaded their case to this paper for change to the national handicapping system.

I think it is fair to say those concerns have gone unanswered.

When will the relevant authorities admit defeat and give the harness racing a handicapping makeover?

I note that the Australian ratings system got off to a successful start this week.

Perhaps their far superior system would provide a good place to start an overhaul.

How will racetrack closures be legislated for?

In all the rhetoric about racetrack closures, one inportant factor seems to have been forgotten.

The Messara Report recommended law changes be made so that tracks can be sold and the money returned to the appropriate code.

Many clubs and other bodies and officials seems to have forgotten that this could become law.

The Racing Industry Transitional Authority (Rita) has been established to oversee the implementation of the Messara Report.

It could recommend to the racing minister that he should attempt to enact a law change to snap up these tracks.

It is at very least a distinct possibility.

The question is how will Rita handle this situation?

Will the three racing codes get together to talk about racetracks?

The Messara Report set a bad precedence in focusing on just one racing code.

And the codes themselves appear to have followed suit, at least when it comes to tracks.

The thoroughbred code has released a comprehensive venue plan; the harness code has not.

I would have thought that it made common sense for both codes to get together and work on a plan to make best use of the country's tracks.

Surely having both codes racing at one track in a region is a major cost-saving.

It seems ridiculous that the two codes are not working together to make full use of venues and save themselves money.

Will the money flow?

The industry has heard endless rhetoric about the money that can be gained by making legislative and structural changes.

The question is will it actually come.

Will charging an information fee for overseas bookmakers actually make them pay for using New Zealand race fields?

Will outsourcing the TAB be the cash cow some suppose it will be?

These are just five points to ponder. There are hundreds more questions to be asked.

I will be attempting to work through them.

Happy trails.

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