Stronach Group Menace to Shut Down Santa Anita Blows Up


Posted on: March 25, 2024, 05:25h. 

Final up to date on: March 25, 2024, 05:25h.

Final week, the proprietor of Southern California’s Santa Anita Racetrack threatened to shut the well-known venue if the state Horse Racing Board (CHRB) voted to grant racing dates for a gathering in Northern California.

Santa Anita, Stronach Group, 1/ST Racing & Gaming, Craig Fravel, California Horse Racing Board
The Stronach Group threatened to “repurpose” Santa Anita, above, until horse racing stays out of Northern California, however was the corporate being severe? (Picture: Thoroughbred Day by day Information)

On Friday, the CHRB went forward and authorized it anyway.

It was a “gorgeous rebuke” to Santa Anita’s proprietor, the Stronach Group, in response to The LA Occasions, which first reported on the story.

North Vs South

Within the letter dated March 19, Craig Fravel, government vice-chairman of 1/ST Racing & Gaming informed the CHRB in no unsure phrases that their choice would have severe repercussions on racing in California.

An evaluation of different makes use of for Santa Anita and San Luis Rey can be undertaken briefly order [if racing is allocated to the north],” Fravel wrote. “The present monetary mannequin and required capital expense make no sense and the consolidation of operations as mentioned final yr and on the January Board assembly is the one different that has been offered.”

The letter was worded so strongly as a result of a invoice working its means by way of the state legislature would divert simulcast cash from Northern California to Southern California within the occasion that there isn’t a racing within the North.

The Stronach Group intends to contribute to the paucity of racing in Northern California by closing down its Bay Space racetrack, Golden Gate fields, in June.

It’s not clear whether or not Stronach was severe about closing down Santa Anita or was using some strategic brinksmanship. Both means, the technique blew up in its face.

Landslide Choice

A vote that was on no account assured to go towards its pursuits – to grant racing dates for a 10-week assembly on the Alameda County Honest in Pleasanton this fall – finally grew to become a unanimous choice in favor of Northern California.

It appears the CHRB is to not be bullied, as its six board members let Fravel know throughout Friday’s assembly.

Commissioner Thomas Hudnut complained Fravel was unfairly making an attempt to arrange the CHRB as “determinant for [Santa Anita] to exit of enterprise.”

“As a result of for those who exit of enterprise, it’s due to mismanagement, not due to this board,” he emphasised, as reported by The LA Occasions.

Commissioner Damascus Castellanos mentioned the letter “bothered him” and was “not cool.”

“Now we’ve the north towards the south, and I acquired a variety of calls,” Castellanos mentioned. “I’m not upset due to the calls. I’m upset as a result of I don’t do effectively with bullies… The underside line is we have to work collectively. We have to work out the way to maintain racing in California. Not simply Northern, not simply Southern, however in California.”

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