This week’s ‘Thursday Thinker’ surrounds ROA president Paul Dixon’s warnings that “racing should organise itself to exert maximum harm on the bookmakers” in order to secure a fair Levy for British racing.
The Racing Post reported that the prospect of “non-racing days” was raised on Wednesday by ROA president Paul Dixon as the bitter dispute over the levy showed no signs of abating.
With an agreement needed to be reached by October 31 between racing and the bookmaking industries over the 5oth levy yield, Dixon struck a frustrated tone on his blog, urging racing to “exert maximum damage” on bookmakers, whom he accuses of “using every trick in the book to avoid paying levy.”
He said: “Levy forecasts for 2011 are now so dire that prize-money levels will not be able to sustain a fully funded fixture list next year.
“Racing should therefore organise itself to exert maximum harm on the bookmakers. This would require having non-racing days. Closing down just single fixtures would allow punters to gravitate to the remaining fixtures on that day.
“The bookmakers like to tell us that racing is far less important to them than it used to be. We shall see. Horseracing remains very important to bookmakers and its withdrawal would inflict significant harm on their businesses.”
“Enough is enough. We, as the principal funders of this industry, must now turn our words into action.”
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