Saturday, August 1, 2009

Business Thoughts on a Random Saturday

As July turns to August we here in Minnesota are looking down at the end of our summer meet at Canterbury on the last day of the month. We wait for hundreds of days for this and before you know it it's gone and we start the countdown all over again. As I changed the calendar this morning, I had a lot of 'horse stuff' running through my mind.

Life After A Canterbury Park Summer

There is a racing calendar between each summer and trying to gear up for that season has been challenging. We've got two solid opportunities open right now.

The first is a pretty standard partnership. A "Fizzy Pop" group, if you will. We're looking at pulling together enough folks (could be 20, 10, 5...however it works out) to claim a horse with Bernell Rhone for the coming year. It may be at Remington right after the Canterbury meet or it may be at the beginning of Tampa Bay after Thanksgiving, but we're looking at about $20,000. If we come in a little lower or higher, that's OK as well. We'll look for a Fizzy type of horse - one that's sound, racing a bit under his capability and one that with Bernell's help can win a few and move the ladder a bit. We'll leave about three month's expenses in the bank and hopefully start picking up some purse money along the way and not have to worry about another capital infusion. No promises, of course, but that's the goal. The odds are pretty good we're not going to get us a Breeder's Cup winner, but we can pick up a nice horse that'll give us a run for our money. We'll be racing the Canterbury/Remington/Tampa Bay circuit.

The second is a group that is going to go after a shot at a bigger winner. We're looking to partner with a few other owners in order to be able to grab a two year old in training with the breeding and potential to race at higher levels at the Fairgrounds and Arlington Park (or beyond?). We don't look to be in the majority of this one, but a solid (25%- 35%) piece of a horse that, under the guidance of trainer Richie Scherer could blossom into something special. Scherer has conditioned many winners over the years including stakes victories by Chance Dance, Jazz Quest and, of course, Mizzcan'tbewrong last weekend in the Claiming Crown. Interesting training fact, in each year he's been training horses, Scherer has won a stakes event. That is quite an achievement and we'd like to be in on that type of success.

If you'd like more details, please touch base.

Retraining Minnesota Thoroughbreds

Standing in the Gap is a relatively new non-profit organization dedicated to the rehabilitation and retraining of racehorses just off the track due to injury. Their mission statement says it all:

"We will stand in the gap for injured thoroughbred racehorses just moments off the track. We will provide nurturing care, rehabilitation, and training for these fallen athletes. We will guard their dignity with our integrity; teaching them - through love, commitment, and endurance - to become effective mentors for our returning military vets."

Please visit their website and see for yourself. Remember, it's a work in progress and Darla and Leslie spend most of their time in the barns, not with their computer! It's a great group effort and is focused upon Minnesota's own.

Blog Talk Radio

I know I have a face for radio and I've been kicking this idea around for a long time. My wife actually set this into motion by looking into this a few years ago but deciding against it for a number of very valid reasons. I was thinking a half hour show - initially in the middle of the night (I'm new, it's the best I'll be able to do, but I'll try for a better time!) talking about racing. Certainly I'll get into issues facing me as a small time owner and what goes on in my little corner of heaven, but also topics of national interest as well. I know I have readers from all corners of the US and Canada and I would hope that some of you would call in and we could knock around some ideas. I think it would be fun for us to have an outlet of our own once or twice a week. Let me know your thoughts.

Minnesota Thoroughbred Association Yearling Sale

Tonight is the MTA Yearling Sale. Over 50 Minnesota breds (and others!) are up for sale in this annual event. There are several promising specimens and they could be in your barn tomorrow! Perhaps a future Minnesota Derby or Minnesota Oaks winner is in this group? It does not look like I'll be able to get to the sale this evening because of some prior commitments, but I'm pretty sure the gavel will fall with or without me! Check out the Minnesota Thoroughbred Association's website for more details and an on-line catalogue.


trracki said...

Would the radio show be a podcast? A podcast would be able to be downloaded "on demand" by listeners so they could listen when the time was good for them. It would also have a much larger reach than a traditional "air waves" program that is dependant upon transmitter power and limited to a particular frequency. What do you think would make your show stand out among the others currently out there like Steve Byk's "At The Races" and "The Roger Stein Show"?

Ted Grevelis said...

Troy - I'm still just kicking around the idea. It would be on Blog Talk Radio and indeed be available on podcast.

I certainly wouldn't pretend to compete with Byk's national show and, being Minnesotan, I think I would bring a completely different perspective to racing in our part of the world than a Southern California show like Stein's (if he's ever mention Canterbury Park).

I wouldn't try to be all things to all people and maybe it would end up looking like a Midwest racing show. I'm fine with that as well. This would be more an interactive forum for the few thousand folks that stop in on the blog from time to time. I'm not trying to set the world on fire, just up the enjoyment level of my part of it.