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Gural Hires Private Investigator For Meadowlands, Tioga, Vernon

Published: November 29, 2012 8:49 am ET

Last Comment: December 7, 2012 12:20 am ET | 9 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

The Meadowlands Racetrack has been proud to be home to the world’s greatest harness racing since its founding. In addition, the racetrack takes pride in providing a racing product that is driven by integrity. In the 2013 Racing Season, the Meadowlands will take another booming step in providing that integrity driven product.

The Meadowlands Racetrack is proud to announce the hiring of a private investigator who will be focused on the integrity of racing at the New Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs.

Chairman of New Meadowlands Racetrack LLC, Jeff Gural, shared the following, “It has always been one of my top priorities to provide a racing product whose integrity the betting public can be proud of. I feel that this step is a significant one in achieving that goal at The Meadowlands Racetrack as well as Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs. I look forward to working with our field investigator to support the world class, integrity driven racing product the betting public wants and deserves.”

Gural continued, “Our goal is to provide an integrity driven racing product at the three tracks as we continue to ensure the health and welfare of our equine athletes both on and off the track. I am personally disappointed that so far we have not been able to come up with a program where a small portion of slots money is used for testing and marketing purposes, so I will make this important first step as for me anything less than a level playing field is unacceptable. Anyone who feels as I do and who would interested in sharing the cost of this new integrity program at the Meadowlands, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs, should contact Jason M. Settlemoir.”

An important aspect of the new field investigators duties are outlined in Section 27 of the 2013 Meadowlands Racetrack Racing Application. Upon applying for participation to race at The Meadowlands, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs during the 2013 meet, horsemen and trainers must grant unfettered access to Meadowlands Racetrack officers, agents or representatives, to their ship-in stalls, training facilities, etc., as discussed in Section 27 of the application. It reads as follows:

27. In consideration of the Meadowlands granting me the privilege of racing at Meadowlands Racetrack, I hereby appoint the Meadowlands Racetrack, its officers, agents or representatives as my agent for the limited purpose and authority to enter, without prior notice, the ship in stalls at Meadowlands Racetrack and/or any other premises, either in-state or out-of-state, including but not limited to any off -track stabling facilities, farms, training centers or other racetrack facilities, for the purpose of checking on the wellbeing and health of any racehorse listed on this application or entered in any upcoming Meadowlands race by me as trainer. Checking on the wellbeing and health of any such racehorse shall include but not be limited to the taking of blood or urine or other testing procedures by the Meadowlands officer, agent or representative.

By acknowledgement of this limited agency given by me to the Meadowlands officers, agents or representatives, I acknowledge and agree that the Meadowlands officer, agent or representative is my agent or guest or invitee and is permitted to enter any of the above mentioned premises as my agent, guest or invitee. Additionally, I agree to produce at my own cost and within 24 hours of a request by the Meadowlands officer, agent or representative, any horse listed on this application or any horse which is entered in any Meadowlands race which is under my custody and control and which I am listed as trainer of record, for the purpose of blood, urine or other testing procedures at a designated location at Meadowlands Racetrack or other location designated by the Meadowlands. In Meadowlands sole discretion and for good cause shown, this time frame can be extended at my written request. In the event of non-cooperation and failure to adhere to these conditions, I am subject to the loss of privileges to enter horses at Meadowlands Racetrack. By signing this application, I further acknowledge and agree that the grant of racing privileges at the Meadowlands Racetrack is a privilege afforded me by Meadowlands Racetrack and is not a property right.

(Meadowlands)

December 7, 2012 - 12:20 amI'd as soon give private

roger kopas SAID...

I'd as soon give private enterprise a shot. Glaring example? How about Ontario's Liberal government? If one wants to ruin a good business,turn it over to the government. Won't take 'em long.

December 3, 2012 - 1:02 pmHis way may not be perfect,

Kevin Jones SAID...

His way may not be perfect, but it has to be better than what is happening to the industry right now. When you see a $12000 claimer (who was not even beating the 12's) get claimed...his next start gets bet down to chalk (in with tougher imo.) gets parked in a fast 1st 1/4 (26)...goes a big 1/2 with a horse on the outside of him...never gets a breather & comes home in 27/3 to jog in a new lifetime mark. Things like this are just chasing the bettors/customers away. Instant magic in a week & the trainer who had the horse before is no slouch....not like it was claimed from a small time trainer.

All he is trying to do here is make his tracks as customer friendly as he can.....imangine that wanting to protect his customers? Like it or not racing has a terrible image that has to be addressed & other than the Hong Kong system this is probably the next best thing until the testing can catch up which I think will never happen. Money spent trying to clean the sport up & leveling the playing field is money well spent. Why would the horsemen object if they are not doing anything wrong?

December 1, 2012 - 4:57 pmThis would be a travesty of

carlo renon SAID...

This would be a travesty of the justice system. He wants more power and control than the police or any regulating body. Remember with absolute power comes absolute coruption. Where would any horseman apeal one of Mr. Gural's penalties, justified or not. He can use the private land act, but the horseman can't? He can dictate when where how and how often your horses get tested.....Can you see where this is going?

November 30, 2012 - 8:19 amGood for him. Somebody has to

Kevin Jones SAID...

Good for him. Somebody has to step up....racing is a privilege not a right! It may chase away a lot of "trainers" with larger stables who "may bend the rules" because they will not want to risk losing the privilege of racing @ the slot enhanced tracks to race a few @ the Meadowlands with lower purses & make it hard to put cards together. Right sort of idea only way for it to be effective is for ALL jurisdictions to get on board.

November 29, 2012 - 7:34 pmKudos to Mr. Gural! It is

Kudos to Mr. Gural! It is long overdue that the horsemen start policing themselves. No one should be abusing the horses in their care to obtain a monetary advantage. Wouldn't it be nice that everyone in the business actually cared about the well being of these beautiful animals. Until that time, its wonderful to see someone brave enough to tackle the often controversial topic of drugs in race horses. How amusing it is with the current rules - horse tests positive- trainer gets suspension- puts horse with his assistant and nothing changes. Would love to see the owners fined and suspended if the horse testing came back positive. Perhaps that would get someone's attention!

Here's an idea Mr Gural - Everyone that enters their horse pays a small fee that goes towards the testing. The ones complaining would probably be the ones with the older horses that hardly ever wins until he gets him in HIS barn.

November 29, 2012 - 4:53 pmToo bad this initiative was

Tom Gibson SAID...

Too bad this initiative was not adopted in Ontario. Look at the fines and suspension catagory at any time and the cheats are receiving vacation time. Get them out of the sport and maybe some much needed integrity to the game can be had.

November 29, 2012 - 11:30 amI am not sure about this. It

Georg Leber SAID...

I am not sure about this. It is introduced with a positive spin but...

The fact that he has made a request for others to share the cost means that the program may be somewhat limited in scope. In otherwords it is not a program that will make regular inspections and employ dozens of people, more it will target individuals that they think might be breaking some rules. That in itself is a very dangerous precident. There have been some high profile cases that Mr. Gural has had run-ins with and I can't help but wonder if this is the remedy.

I think the horseman's association should review and advise. Giving this much authority to a private entity (Meadowlands et al) is not the same as a government regulated body. Of course in the USA deregulation is the norm. The banking industry is enough of a glaring example to send warning signals.

Positive spin or not Mr. Gural suspended a driver for defending a trainer that received a suspension. I truly believe that these functions have to be done with an impartial 3rd party. Especially since people's livelivhood depends on the results.

Georg Leber-ICR Racing

November 29, 2012 - 11:10 amHats off to Mr Gural. Maybe

Hats off to Mr Gural. Maybe he would be interested in some investigative work regarding the Ontario Government. Integrity.......just saying!!!!

November 29, 2012 - 10:52 amMr. Gural, I praise you for

Mr. Gural,
I praise you for all the hard work you and your team has been doing to offer the betting public a clean and fair racing product, unlike the counterparts in Ontario where the common slap on the wrist practice rules all. Congratulations on taking the initiative to allocate partial slot funds to propelling your business forward.


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