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DSS Said:

> What about a brief bio on the riders and their horses, their
> hopes, the reason they are doing this.....(anyone ever watch
> the trainer/owner interviews before the Kentucky Derby).  
> Speaking of the KD,

Speaking of the KD, did anybody besides me watch the NBC telecast
and find it worse than appalling?  It what it takes to make
endurance "popular" with the non-participating public is to have
sportscasters shoving a microphone in my face asking assinine
questions before I have even had a chance to officially finish 
the ride, and another one attempting to eavesdrop on an offical
conversation with race stewards and then having the audacity 
to put his arm around me and drag me away from my legitimate
business of taking care of the horse, etc.  While also not 
providing the times of the fractions during the race(only
commenting that they are record setting), and never providing
the full order of finish (at least not before I got so disgusted
that I could no longer watch).

Then... I pass.

That kind of publicity I can do without.

> anyone think it would retain all of its 
> mystery and attraction for SO MANY people who don't own a 
> horse, let alone own a race horse, if we didn't get any
> information on the result of the race until the next day?

Since what attracts so many of the people who don't own a horse
let along a race horse is the opportunity to bet on the race 
(and therefore giving them a stake in the outcome) and that
flat track, sprint racing, is very much a sport about instant 
gratification; no people wouldn't be as keen if they didn't 
get information about the extent of the return on their 
investment.  The major interest in the Kentucky Derby and in 
TB racing in general is to the "betting public."

Endurance, on the other hand, is not a sport about instant 
gratification at all.  I, personally, am of the opinion that
it is very much a sport about exemplifying the concept that
"Good things come to those who wait."  I am not bothered one
whit about the fact that the result from Biltmore appear to 
be unavailable to the casual public.  I have no stake whatsoever
in the outcome of the ride, there is no way that I can change
the outcome of the ride, and there is not a single decision in 
my life that I would make differently if I had this information.
My life would not be changed at all were I to not find out about
the results until they are officially posted in the Endurance

There is nothing even remotely resembling a spectator sport in 
the sport of endurance, and I must confess that making changes
in the sport to make it more spectator friendly would, in my 
opinion, make it significally less fun for the participants.
I certainly don't want to do what TB racing has (since its
inception) done to make it a spectator sport, and that is to 
make it a gambling venue.  One need only ask the NTRA and every
owner of a TB race track about how spectators are attracted to
the sport and they will tell you about keeping the betting public happy and attracting them with imaginative ways of 
allowing them to bet.

TB racing would not be a particularly good model for endurance
to look to, if it wants to figure out how to make the sport 
appealing to "non-participants" (I put this in quotes, because technically speaking, because they have a financial stake in 
the outcome, the bettors are not really non-participants).

And the AERC would do well to take a long, hard look at what
might need to be done to make endurance appealing to non-riders.
I have noticed over the past decade that I have been a 
participant in endurance, that the things that have been done in
order to make endurance more appealing and to broaden its 
interest have gone a long way in making it less appealing for

Look at what the XFL (and NBC, I might add) has done to the sport
of football and consider whether "popular" is where the 
participants want to go with endurance.

Me?  Nahhhh.  I am sufficiently self-aware to understand that I
have somewhat esoteric tastes.  Rarely ever do I find what is
"popular" very appealing.  There just aren't very many people
(horse owner and non-owner alike) who have very much interest in
riding a horse or a horse being ridden for 50 to 100 miles. But
I do, so changing the sport to appeal to people who have no 
interest in it the way that it is will likely ruin it for the
people who do.

Orange County, Calif.

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