Friday, October 23, 2009

If this is a horse racing media outlet, then perhaps I should be paying a little more attention

I really should take this blog more seriously. Because, apparently, other people do.

OK, I'll confess, I do approach this blog earnestly. I have my share of fun with it from time to time, but always with a point to make. And then again, sometimes my thoughts are just downright pedantic. So it would be hard to convince my readers that this is all done on a lark.

But during a week when I was kept both busy and distracted apart from this endeavor and haven't posted to the Fugue since late on a Tuesday, I got a wake-up call in the form of an unsolicited e-mail. From HRTV. Yes, the horse racing television network that isn't TVG.

It was a press release. Because HRTV wants to reach you, through me.

"Attached please find information that you and your readers will find of interest," it read. "Thank you very much, and best wishes for continued success."

Ummmm ... wow.

The release tells of HRTV's launch of the network's new broadband channel at Now, fans of horse racing and HRTV's other original programming can stream HRTV's live TV feed over their computer, 24/7.

And that is pretty cool.

When I have the service switched on -- it's presently dormant -- I subscribe to DirecTV, and the package includes TVG. So I've seen very little from HRTV in the past. Being able to stream HRTV live over my computer is enticing, though the service does come at a cost. (Pricing tiers range from $9.99 a month to $89.99 per year, although the service is on sale through Dec. 31 at 12 months for $49.99.)

I'd really be tempted if I could account-wager from North Carolina.

And actually, HRTV isn't the only racing industry entity to contact me recently as a means of trying to get the word out about a product or service. I haven't fully checked out the site that promotes the Thomas Herding Technique of equine athletic psychology -- but it has a video with Bob Baffert on the front page and a clip featuring John Shirreffs on the inside. So I'll give them a few minutes of my time maybe later this weekend and see what "THT" is all about.

Meanwhile, maybe I need to be thinking harder, writing more, and figuring out how to stop doing this for free.

Although at least at my present prices, nobody can complain that they didn't get what they paid for.


  1. Glenn, quite a few sites got the same press release from Mr. Swan, I believe it was. But don't let me rain on your parade. The THT is good stuff from Kerry Thomas...if you search my site, you'll see press I gave KT, too.

  2. Sid, these were just the first instances that really clued me in that such contacts were extended to bloggers these days. And actually not just to some (clearly noteworthy) bloggers, whose blogs are secondary to their full-time employment with major publications in this industry's media, but all the way down to me.

  3. Maybe you could consider not being a self-involved jerk and instead think about how you could use your power, such as it is, to communicate on subjects that might actually do some good for horses and racing.

  4. I've never really felt that TVG or HRTV were good at tackling the unpleasant and/or turf war politic issues facing horse racing, but enjoyed watching the races, especially from AUS and EU plus the Dubai World Cup coverage. I have Dish and watch both, but enjoy the hosts, Inside Information, Against the Odds on HRTV. In fact, while I'm not thrilled with customer service/price at Dish I never switched to Direct even though they had better "gettya'" deals because of no HRTV service. BTW...isn't there some connection between Magna/Stronach and HRTV???? Lord, what a mess that man has left all the while feathering his nest....and all the while (again) allowed to be a significant player in the race game. What ever in the hell happened to performance equating to benefits and reward or pay? Guess it must be the same disease facing the US from Wall Street, banking and insurance industries.

  5. Noelle: Not quite the reaction I expected. But to each her own. Good luck improving the state of affairs for horses and racing with your undeniable charm.

  6. Noelle:

    Don't confuse being interested in racing, actually participating and related to same, with some lack of scathing albeit disdain for that same industry because it is not addressing/changing a needed correction for the better at every post. In other words, just cause FFT isn't bashing racing every blog, doesn't mean FFT isn't aware, concerned or trying to make a positive difference. An individual cannot effect better change from without; it is better to be within. What exactly is your gripe? What is missing?

    Glenn, as to the roboemail from is nothing more than understanding where interested race fans are. They have a long way to go in my book and I don't bet like they assume your readers do. Because after all, the industry has been reduced to handle, payouts, sales numbers and win, place and show. Everything else is fill for the braodcast and that is very sad to me. There was a time when the honor was in breeding competitive horses and winning without the cheat factor.

  7. The last sentence, Sid. ... Where do we find that again?

  8. Glenn, I am honored to have THT mentioned by you and would be even more so to have you visit my company website and or face book company fan page where I post much up to date thoughts and ongoing research. I research wild horse herds, social behavior and environmental impacts on their psychology and their ability to assimilate to changes in social structure and environments. I use this research that I have been doing independently to essentially, "bring the outside in". In an effort to advance the natural herd dynamic into the artificial world, THT Performance services were developed for the athlete. Perhaps we'll meet at Breeders Cup? I will be at the November sale at Keene as well, and am currently scheduling for next week at Fair Hill Training Center. I appreciate your time very much. Regards- Kerry M Thomas, Founder of Thomas Herding Technique.

  9. Glenn, that last sentence applies to what you are actually doing on a small-scale basis; i, for one, hope you succeed -- not just with a big horse -- but with any horse that will allow you sustain your operation. There was a time when it was actually commonplace to do what you are doing, and one of my fondest memories from my youth was watching the operation of Maryland restaurant-owner Bob Beal, who stood the stallion Friend's Choice on the side. The he came up with the "big horse," Dave's Friend.

  10. The Chief wrote: I really should take this blog more seriously. Because, apparently, other people do.


    Well I'm not among them.

    I come here to have a little fun and leave with a smile on my face. Sort of like Soupy Sales used to. :D

  11. Hey Glen

    I like your blog and your sense of humor, keep rockin and don't let the bastards get you down.

  12. I was about to say that I was glad to have "The Race is Not Always to the Swift" in my "Railbirds Row" list of blogs, too. Then I realized it wasn't. Which was certainly an oversight, and one that is now fixed.


I welcome comments, including criticism and debate. But jerks and the vulgar will not be tolerated.