48 Hour Declarations

It has been eighteen months since Charlie Brooks last rejoiced about the benefits of 48 hour declarations. Only now, after figures from ATR and RUK show that demand for our racing overseas "is growing", is Brooks getting excited again.

Brooks is getting excited about a recently announced new deal which will guarantee £1.3 Million for racing over the next three years.

£1.3 Million over three years? Unless I read it wrong that works out at just £433,333 a year. This is a figure way short of the "millions" which racing was promised at the start.

British racing should feel conned. When the details of 48 hour decs were first negotiated a selling point was that British racing would receive millions each year and yet the forecasts for the next three years are well short of what was promised.

And where exactly does the money go? How much of that £433,333 goes directly to the courses? How much goes directly to the owners, trainers and jockeys? These were the groups which had the most concerns about 48 hour declarations. Is their share of the £433,333 the price which was worth paying?

What about the Punters?

Charlie: let us make no mistake - WE pay for racing. Not owners, not bookies, not overseas TV contracts. Us punters with our online bets, our on course bets, our daily Yankees and our Saturday Scoop6 bets pay for racing.

So what have we got out of this racing deal? Nothing but total inconvenience due to the vast increase in non runners.

It is so frustrating picking a horse in the morning only for it to not run in the afternoon. It is so frustrating getting a good price in the morning only for another horse in the race to pull out leaving us with a rule 4 deduction.

Charlie: the high level of non runners is unacceptable. 48 hour declarations is not a price worth paying.

Brooks the Racing Jester?

I really think Brooks is actually joking in his latest Telegraph article. I really believe he loves winding up grumpy trainers and scoffing at punters. In his latest Telegraph column Brooks seems to be in denial about the problems of British Racing:

If our racing is to ever financially thrive, it's essential that the supreme quality and integrity that makes it such a great betting medium, is marketed worldwide. International punters have had their pockets picked in recent years by the likes of South African cricket captain Hansie Cronje and dodgy Indian bookmakers. We should not under estimate the attractiveness of our blue chip bookmakers and a clean product.

What has he been watching for the past five years? Racing at Portman Park? Has no jockey ever been suspended for a dodgy ride? Has no owner ever been warned off?

If Charlie thinks our bookies are blue chip and that our product is clean then I do not think anyone can take anything he says seriously again.

Charlie Brooks in the Daily Telegraph

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