JC / Railbird

An Introvert’s Refuge

Joe Nevills:

An ever-growing sentiment among the movers and shakers of the horse racing industry is the concern over empty space in their facilities. They bemoan the sections of empty grandstands or an apron spotted with racegoers as a sign of dwindling attendance, and they are not wrong …

The answer some are coming back with to combat this problem is to shrink, by building smaller grandstands or otherwise funneling the existing patrons into smaller areas until it gives the appearance of a crowd. It is easier to advertise a track as a happening place with a party atmosphere if it looks like there are actually people there to party with.

I understand this sentiment, but if the idea is widely adopted, it could jeopardize one of the one of the greatest perks horse racing has over other professional sports — the ability to be left alone.

This is truly one of the best things about horse racing, especially at a typical track on a typical day: It’s you and your thoughts and the horses.