Pinnacle Race Course’s Troubled Track and Horsemen

Pinnacle in Negotiations for 2011 Race Dates

Gorham said the Campbells are currently trying to work out a deal with the HBPA and the Michigan Gaming and Control Board to host a 2011 race meet.

Many right now would like to know what Bob Gorham is talking about? Including other Board Members. Pinnacle has met with the MGCB, but neither them nor Campbell will discuss a thing with the MIHBPA. So why is Bob Gorham telling the BloodHorse that Pinnacle is in negotiations with the HBPA?

MIHBPA

MGCB: The Michigan Gaming Control Board remains silent on their position regarding Pinnacle’s 2011 “conditional license”. Original date for conditions to be met was December 31, 2010, extensions have been given while Pinnacle’s response of January 12,2011 was being reviewed by the Attorney General. The HBPA, on regular basis, has attempted to gain meaningful information from both the MGCB and Pinnacle, unfortunately without any success. Our members deserve better, it is now February 11, 2011, and plans for their racing operations in 2011 are well underway. Unfortunately, plans are only being guided by rumors and uncertainty. It is impossible for the board to address the serious issues facing our industry and pursue options, when meaningful information is non-existent. Not many comments coming to the HBPA, based on public information, express a positive attitude about thoroughbred racing at Pinnacle in 2011. 

COME ON, IT IS TIME TO LEVEL WITH OUR HORSEMEN AND WOMEN! IN FACT, PAST TIME!

2/11_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

CLARIFICATION: Comments coming to the HBPA indicate there is some confusion regarding Post It Stable’s plan for Pinnacle’s 2011 season.  The plan was presented at an informal meeting in mid January to several  HBPA board members. The possible plan called for a 30 day meet, racing three days for 10 weeks. In addition, for this to be accomplished the HBPA membership would need to contribute $500,000 from the purse pool.

To clarify, the Michigan HBPA board has not officially met to discuss the potential plan. It is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to address any issue on an official basis with so much uncertainty regarding Pinnacle’s 2011 license. The HBPA board is anxious to discuss 2011,  with MGCB not unveiling their position on the conditional license, the current atmosphere seriously hampers the opportunity for any meaningful discussion.

2/16_______________________

Now out comes this BloodHorse Article with Bob Gorham’s take on it all. But his words are his own and they are totally FALSE. The HBPA are not in negotiations with Pinnacle. How could they be when they don’t even know if Jerry Campbell will acquire a license for 2011. And why is Bob Gorham selling the all the Thoroughbred Horsemen and Women short?

A 30 day meet? Maryland’s Horsemen wouldn’t settle on a 49 day meet let alone a 30 day meet. And they United together as one and told both the State and Track NO DEAL. Again and again and again. Frank Stronach relinquished control over MID the following day. The next Maryland’s Horsemen made a deal.

The NEHBPA are now standing together and fighting Suffolk Downs. And they mean business. They’ve pulled the T.B. Signal, and to date four other HBPA Branches have also pulled their Signals in support. Fl., Ohio, Oregon and Maryland.

I applaud them all for having the guts and drive no matter at what cost to take the stand they are taking. It is needed not only for New England, but all the Race Tracks who have been dumping on the Horsemen for years and the Horsemen taking it as if they could do nothing but take it. Well the tides have changed people. They are some out there willing to TAKE THAT STAND. Because they know they’ve got nothing else to lose.

Bob Gorham does not speak for the MIHBPA Board or the rest of the Directors, and he certainly doesn’t speak for all of the Horsemen & Women this board is supposed to represent. In fact I know of another board member who is fuming at present over this article.

http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/61424/pinnacle-in-negotiations-for-2011-race-dates#ixzz1EJ5r5ziJ

Updated: Thursday, February 17, 2011 6:01 PM
Posted: Thursday, February 17, 2011 5:02 PM
 
The owners of the Detroit, Mich.-area Pinnacle Race Course, which has been shuttered since November due to financial problems, including property tax issues, are working out details to try to host a limited racing schedule in 2011.

“Attempting to launch a racetrack in a depressed area with the financial situation of the country and of that area was obviously a challenge—much bigger than the owners anticipated,” said trainer Bob Gorham, a director of the state’s Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association, of Jerry and Lisa Campbell’s decision to open the track in July 2008.

Gorham said the Campbells are currently trying to work out a deal with the HBPA and the Michigan Gaming and Control Board to host a 2011 race meet. The track, which also suspended simulcast operations at the end of its live meet Oct. 31, has already been awarded 84 days for 2011, however everything depends on funding.

“It would probably be in the neighborhood of a 30-day total race day meet; three days a week for 10 weeks is the current plan,” said Gorham, adding that the season was projected to run from July through September.

“It’s important to give horsemen some hope this is going to be worked out, because this isn’t totally a dead issue,” said Gorham of Pinnacle, which has struggled financially since it opened. If the dates are approved, Gorham said they would likely be partially supplemented by the HBPA.

Last year, Pinnacle was able to race 41 days only because horsemen contributed $277,000–a cost originally to be funded by the state’s simulcast tax until the Gaming Control Board rescinded that budget item.

“The HBPA is entertaining that thought (supplementing race dates again) and is doing everything in their power to try and make a meet there this year,” said Gorham. He added that the HBPA would probably not be able to contribute as much to Pinnacle this year, but that the organization would do “everything we possibly can” to support the racetrack.

Gorham, who has a large racing stable and owns and breeds most of the horses he trains, said like many other horsemen, he has made plans to race in other states this year considering Pinnacle’s situation.

“If Pinnacle does open for whatever meet, I will certainly support it and be there to race,” he said. “But it’s going to be short enough that I can’t race and train there exclusively. I think most horsemen are in that situation.”
 
According to the Detroit business website Crainsdetroit.com, the Campbells have been in informal negotiations to sell a minority stake in Pinnacle in an effort to resolve problems with delinquent property taxes and insufficient funds.

Pinnacle didn’t pay $1.46 million in property taxes collectively for 2009 and 2010 because it didn’t receive its tax bills–a bureaucratic mistake.

“We have appealed those taxes; they’re exorbitantly high,” Campbell told Crains Detroit.

According to the website, the appeal has been submitted to the Michigan Tax Tribunal, which isn’t expected to resolve the cases for some time because of a two-year backlog. Campbell is being represented by Detroit-based Honigman, Miller, Schwartz, and Cohn.

In other financial woes, Crains Detroit reported the local Huron Township attorney is expected to sue Pinnacle for more than $170,000 in arrearages for police protection.

Township supervisor Elke Doom told Crains Detroit that Pinnacle had informed the township last summer it didn’t believe it needed to honor its police contract. The track made a payment offer that was ignored, and the matter is now being handled by lawyers, according to Campbell.

End

Now let’s clear some things up. I’m into FACTS.

Gorham States:  If the dates ( 2011 )  are approved, Gorham said they would likely be partially supplemented by the HBPA.

Partially Bob? Last year the HBPA funded the entire meet solely. And paid Pinnacle’s Water bill of $33,000 on top of it. Now what would make you state that this year would be only partially supplemented by the HBPA?
 
Gorham States: Last year, Pinnacle was able to race 41 days only because horsemen contributed $277,000–a cost originally to be funded by the state’s simulcast tax until the Gaming Control Board rescinded that budget item.
 
In 2010 the HBPA paid about a Million Dollars out of their purses. Any of this Board can correct me if I’m wrong.
 
Gorham States: “It’s important to give horsemen some hope this is going to be worked out, because this isn’t totally a dead issue,”.
 
What hope is that Bob? That they are told here’s your 30 day meet or nothing at all. As far as I’m concerned I’d tell the State to shove these 30 days up their ass. And why in the hell are you speaking as if the Horsemen are all children to stupid to comprehend anything. It’s important to give them hope. They know the situation here in this living in the dark ages State of Michigan. Where the new Governor would rather tax the old people’s pension than consider implementing VLTs, Slots, Off Track Wagering, Telephone Wagering and any other thing that could make all 5 Race Tracks in the State Racinos. And bring the kind of Revenue that Indiana and other States are enjoying.
 
The Horsemen aren’t stupid and they certainly don’t need a single Director out of 12, with a President, Vice-President, Sec./Tres and Executive Director making it 16 people in total to talk bullshit to the BloodHorse.
 
“The HBPA is entertaining that thought (supplementing race dates again) and is doing everything in their power to try and make a meet there this year,” said Gorham. He added that the HBPA would probably not be able to contribute as much to Pinnacle this year, but that the organization would do “everything we possibly can” to support the racetrack.”
 
Really?
 
I would be entertaining the thought of getting every single Horsemen & Women, contact the MTOBA & the Agriculture people and organize about a 1,000 people to go to Lansing and demand to be recognized. Since the Thoroughbred Industry has been kicked to the side like we don’t exist or matter anymore. I do not think all of the HBPA are sitting around entertaining the thought of handing over all of their money again to Jerry Campbell. So why State This?
 
Gorham, who has a large racing stable and owns and breeds most of the horses he trains, said like many other horsemen, he has made plans to race in other states this year considering Pinnacle’s situation.

“If Pinnacle does open for whatever meet, I will certainly support it and be there to race,” he said. “But it’s going to be short enough that I can’t race and train there exclusively. I think most horsemen are in that situation.”

How nice Bob, I’m happy you have a large Stable with many horses. You won some big races last year. Many Stake Races as well. But that’s the thing Bob, yes ALL of the Horsemen are in the exact situation. But not ALL can afford to run all over the country to race their horses. Those that have gone nowhere all winter stayed put because they couldn’t afford that cost.

So in reality you do this interview with BloodHorse making false Statements that 30 days would be fine with everybody, the whole organization would do “everything we possibly can” to support the racetrack.” When this is so far from any truth it is down right sickening.

I have a Question for Bob Gorham, did he become a minority investor with Pinnacle? For that matter has any other HBPA Board Member? Because if you have that  you feel the need to play suck up to Pinnacle’s Owner, I would highly suggest you resign immediately from the HBPA Board. Because you cannot wholeheartedly represent the Horsem & Women and also the Track Management both at the same time. It is a conflict of interest.

So Bob Gorham has stated to the BloodHorse the HBPA and the Horsemen would support a 30 day meet, then he has made plans to race in other states this year considering Pinnacle’s situation. So in reality Bob Gorham doesn’t care anyway he is racing elsewhere. So then why tell the BloodHorse everybody else supports this crap?

All I know is again I APPLAUD the New England HBPA and all of it’s Horsemen & Women for taking a stand with Suffolk Downs. NEHPBA President stated in the article Suffolk, Horsemen to Resume Negotiations

“Look at what all of the other tracks across the country have done,” said Frisoli. “If they are willing to share the revenue 50-50 as we have asked, then we’ll have a deal.”

While track management and the NEHBPA have been at odds, the horsemen withdrew their consent for races from the New York Racing Association to be simulcast and subsequently horsemen in Ohio, Florida, Oregon, and Maryland pulled their signals.

***

And that is the results that can be achieved with TOTAL UNITY. And this is what others will respect and why they now have been given support by other HBPA chapters.

I must have been crazy when I personally stated in another blog about NEHBPA situation that I only wished we were racing here in Mi. so we as well could pull our Signal in support.
 

Then this Article comes out with one Mi. Horsemen talking a bunch of bunk. The Horsmen in this State have never stood together on anything, how in the world could they offer support to other States Chapters with a move like this.

I got a Pingback on one of my Blogs by Jessica Chaple/Railbird v2

100 Days or No Days

A view from Michigan on the news from Massachusetts and Maryland:

Among the comments to her Blog was mine in response to those comments. The last one is from a John S. in response to mine.

In Michigan we have NOTHING. No OTBs, VLTs not even the Office of Racing Commissioner anymore since 2009. Governor Granholm dissolved it and then took Horse Racing from Agriculture where it’s been from the start ( 1933 ) and placed us under the Michigan Gaming Control Board. And the only thing that the MGCB has been over is CASINOS period. They could care less about Horse Racing.

Their Director Richard Kalm made statements to the Detroit Free Press here and this is a direct quote: The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians recently purchased land near Pinnacle Race Course in Huron Township in western Wayne County. Gaming facilities there or in Port Huron would compete directly for local customers with Detroit’s three casinos, which count on exclusivity to fuel their business. The Detroit casinos are an important source of revenue for the City of Detroit.

Well the Soo Tribe voted that project down at Pinnacle with good reason. They have their own crooked turmoil going on with-in their tribe. But where is the MGCB directors head. Up the three Detroit Casinos A**** that’s where.

I wrote a blog entitled Racetracks vs. Racinos. It not hard to see which ones are thriving and which are dying.

Michigan legislators continue to live in the dark ages. Blog after Blog with data detailing what further revenue could be brought in with implementing further gaming to the Race Tracks.

They would rather sit and cry broke and be total hypocrites by stating gambling is bad. Really? 24 going on 25 Casinos, 21 Tribunal, 3 Commercial Detroit. A million different ways to play the lottery. Charity Casinos.

All I know is in Mi. Horse Racing was here before anybody ever heard the word Lottery or Casino. We have generated the $$$ for this State since 1933, and now we have been thrown to the side like we don’t exist or matter. Beyond frustrating. And Pinnacle’s owner isn’t as broke as he’s putting on. None of the tracks are. Yet it’s the truly broke ones the Horsemen/Women who funded the meet entirely in 2010. And paid Pinnacle’s Water Bill to boot.

I applaud Maryland & New England’s Horsemen for having the guts to unite and stick together and taking a stand for good, bad or indifference. I only wish the MIHBPA would also finally come together on the same page and do the same. That is their biggest problem, none of them will stick together. And that’s why they will continue to forever run scared.

I say ENOUGH is ENOUGH. We hit rock bottom long ago, we’ve got nothing else to lose. It’s either stand up and fight or die. But I’ll be damned if I’d go down and die without swinging back. To the State and to the Track.

A Thank You to the author of this blog site Jessica Chapel for the Ping Back. Much Appreciated.

Click onto my Horse Racing Tab. You’ll get the full picture.

Posted by Longshot on February 17, 2011 @ 2:19 am

And there you have it …
Massive frustration from Longshot because horsemen that are getting socked can’t unite and an entire Ohio racing industry that buckled because of one legislator. More people should take away lessons from what just went down in Egypt — if you can topple an entire entrenched government by taking to the streets in numbers, you can surely put down a puny legislator by marshaling forces and making loud noise every single day until you get what you need to survive. What is it about the makeup of horsemen that they can’t successfully fight for their own interests even when those interests are beneficial to the state?

Posted by John S. on February 17, 2011 @ 10:39 am

I rest my case.

This article by BloodHorse Pinnacle in Negotiations for 2011 Race Dates was one individuals opinion. Bob Gorham and only Bob Gorham. He was not speaking for ALL of the Horsemen/Women here.

These people need to get their heads together ( that should be a first ) and start fighting back, otherwise they will forever be caving in and running scared. To the State shove your 30 days. To Pinnacle, if you can afford to write a check to the Republicans in Michigan to the tune of $5,000 on May 27th, 2010, while crying broke at the July general membership meeting. Then crying broke to get the HBPA to pay your water bill. Call the Republicans for Financial Assistance.

 
CAMPBELL, JERRY D MR
CLEARWATER,FL 33762
CITIZENS BANK CORP (CITY BANK)/BANK 5/27/10 $5,000 Republican Party of Michigan (R)
CAMPBELL, JERRY
JACKSON,MI 49201
REPUBLIC BANK/BANKER 6/8/01 $1,000 Republican State Cmte of Michigan (R)
CAMPBELL, JERRY
JACKSON,MI 49201
REPUBLIC BANCORP INC./CHAIRMAN & CE 10/4/06 $500 Bouchard, Michael J (R)
CAMPBELL, JERRY
JACKSON,MI 49201
REPUBLIC BANKCORP INC./CHAIRMAN 9/26/07 $250 Walberg, Tim (R)
CAMPBELL, JERRY D
JACKSON,MI 49201
REPUBLIC BANCORP INC./BANKER 7/18/06 $1,000 Friends of Central Michigan University
CAMPBELL, JERRY D
JACKSON,MI 49201
REPUBLIC BANCORP/CHAIRMAN 6/19/03 $1,000 DeRossett, Gene (R)
CAMPBELL, JERRY D
OWOSSO,MI 48867
REPUBLIC BANCORP 4/8/99 $1,000 Bush, George W (R)
CAMPBELL, JERRY D
JACKSON,MI 49201
REPUBLIC BANCORP/CHAIRMAN 10/13/03 $590 DeRossett, Gene (R)
CAMPBELL, JERRY D
OWOSSO,MI 48867
REPUBLIC BANK EXECUTIVE 8/22/90 $500 Schuette, Bill (R)
CAMPBELL, JERRY D MR
JACKSON,MI 49201
CITIZENS BANK/BANKER 12/12/07 $1,000 Romney, Mitt (R)

~
~

Isn’t it Bill Shuette who now holds Pinnacle’s fate? Let’s see if 21 years later if he helps you.

As for me I’m done feeling sorry for you. I feel sorry for the Horsemen and what they have had to pay out of their pockets when they are the true broke ones.

And I’m tired of trying to get them to fight for themselves. Seems I think more of them they do about themselves.

Bob Gorham owes the HBPA and all of the Horsemen & Women an apology. This article did nothing but open the door to Ridicule of Pinnacle and it’s Owner with their added details of trouble. So I finished it, because in the process Bob Gorham also made the MIHBPA and all of its members look weak. A further atrocity against them. It shouldn’t have happened.

And to those Mi. T.B.  Horsemen/Women ~ You decide your fate, you don’t let others decide for you. You have the control. For once in your lives USE IT.

I’ve given up.

~

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Filed under Michigan Horse Racing, Michigan Horse Racing News, Michigan Politics, Michigan Thoroughbred Horse Racing, Pinnacle Race Course, Racinos, Sports, The Michigan Gaming Control Board, Thoroughbred Horse Racing

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