In any case, just as the ad slogan “Go, Baby, Go” was becoming the impetus for a new consumer awareness, the movement to work in concert for common good disappeared. Any dream of uniting the horse racing industry died when the National Thoroughbred Racing Association began losing its charter to engage in advertising and marketing on behalf of its members. Today’s NTRA is but a shell of its once-formidable self – the industry-funded marketing machine that produced Tim Smith as de facto commissioner and Lori Petty as the uncommon party girl with a get-lucky attitude.
Moving in opposite direction, industry members never make a decision in “the best interests of the sport.” They’re so busy with the present that they can’t serve the future. Consensus is rare. Change occurs at a crawl. If ever the sport had a need for an individual to take charge, it is now. Unifying the sport for the second time by implementing the NTRA is an opportunity that’s politically improbable. But, if people really wanted, it’s not totally unfeasible. Those who don’t believe in Santa Claus, well…they’ll find a lump of coal in their stocking. Those, who do, may find presents they never imagined.
Four days down and eight to go in the run-up to Christmas. Read along every day to learn what horse racing's biggest wishes for the future might be. For the "Third Day of Christmas, hit http://bit.ly/eFcrsI.