Racing Attracts the Best People: Canadian Inquiry Brings Out Many Interesting Facts Indorse Pari-Mutuel Betting, Daily Racing Form, 1919-10-03


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RACING ATTRACTS THE BEST PEOPLE Canadian Inquiry Brings Out Many Interesting Tacts Indorse Pari-Mutuel Betting. TORONTO, Ont., October 2. At todays session of the racing commission W. P. Fraser, secretary of the Ontario Jockey Club, said the Duke of Con-naught and Princess Patricia attended the races at Woodbine frequently. In 191S the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire were there unofficially. "The spring meeting is looked forward to by thousands of people from Halifax to Vancouver as a great sporting and social event. Great financial benefit resulted to Toronto." "You keep track of the number of breeders. Have they increased :" "Up to 1917 they did. They cannot breed for sport; they must have money." "For the two years when racing was not permitted it will cost the Ontario Jockey Club close to 50,000?" "Yes." "In 1902Bthe property cost 50,000, and now, according to the assessment department, it is over 1919.sh00,000?" f Addressing- the commissioner, Mr. Fraser said: "The instructions of the directors of the Ontario Jockey ClubJire that all their books are open to you. but they Mure bad an unfortunate experience with Mr. Raney lii the past, and they do not intend to give him these statements. He used information given on a confidential understanding to circulate in a booklet form." Mr. Fraser said the statement which Mr. Raney made that the rake-off of the Ontario Jockey Club in 1917 was 20,000 was not correct. Cross-examined by Mr. Raney, Ir. Fraser said the revenue of Canadian Racing Associations came from fees from jockeys and owners. When there was a der-icit the clubs were assessed, "What is the salary of the secretary?" "None of your business." "Do you know anything of outside associations?" "Very little." "Do you think there are too many race tracks?" "No, dont think there are enough." "You have many influential men, members of parliament, on your directorate?" "Yes." ., A. E. Dyment. a director of the Ontario Jockey Club, emphasized the point that the farmers benefited by the training of horses. As many horses were Imported from the United States as from England. FRANCIS NELSONS SOUND VIEWS. Francis Nelson said horse racing could not succeed without a system of betting. There was always a more orderly crowd at race meetings than at any other form of sjwrt. He was at the Woodbine course when betting was suspended, and after observing the closing he thought that betting does not keep anyone from going to the races. In -supporting the pari-mutuels Mr. Nelson said that he believed the bulk of the receipts should go to the racers. In showing the difference between the prize money at a pari-mutuel course and the bookmakers, he pointed to Kentucky, where the daily purses were as high as 2,000. and to New York, where the purses ran from ,500 up. During the war racing was stopped only in Canada. In England and all other countries tracks were kept open. Asked as to his knowledge of C. O. Smith, sometimes called Social Smith, of Hamilton, Mr. Nelson said to Mr. Raney: "I have seen him on the race course just as I might see you there." Laughter. "Do the English race tracks get any benefit from the bookmakers?" "Yes." "You did not approve of the stopping of racing?" "I did not then and do not now see any reason of stopping the amusement of racing as a war measure." W. A. McCullongh. secretary of the Dufferin Driving Club, explained that the value of the Dufferin track was about 00,000, and the taxes amounted to ,000. To Keep the place. Jn condition necessitated a yearly. expenditure of ,000. When questioned by Mr. Raney he said that there Continued on second page. j . , , , . RACING ATTRACTS THE BEST PEOPLE Continued from first page. were no shareholders in the club, and that if it were not for the liberal support of those interested in the keeping up of the high standard of trotting horses they would not get along at all. He urged that the government should allow pari-mutuel betting, or such other means of betting as could be approved. Mr. Eraser was cross-examined at tills afternoons session. He testified that in 1911, the first year in which the pari-mutuels operated at the Woodbine track, thb total receipts were 101,189. This amount steadily increased with the years until in 1910 the receipts from the pari-mutuels were 57,-087. This was compared, with the receipts from the bookmaking system of 1909, when the receipts were 1919.sh7,700. Mr. Raney: "Does this indicate to you the great popularity of the pari-mutuels?" Mr. Fraser: "No, it indicates that in the space of ten years the value of the dollar has dropped considerably." Mr. Raney: "Does it suggest to you that pari-mutuels offered greater temptation than bookmaking systems, as you said, in 1910V" Mr. Fraser: "No." Mr. Fraser then showed that gate receipts in 1912 were SS3.779, while purses amounted to 90,000. In 1910 the gate receipts wore 100,000, while purses were 109,000. Mr. Fraser admitted that the- Ontario Jockey Club had made no grant to the Canadian Breeding Bureau. President Kerr and secretary A. R. Loudon of the Hamilton Jockey Club were also examined, but declined to give any detailed information to Mr. Baney.

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