As my visitors may have noticed, Jumping Back In has been rebranded!
It has been a long while since my first post about “jumping back in” to the equestrian community after my move to NYC, so I wanted this site’s title to reflect its commitment to delivering current news stories and contemplations on the state of modern horse life. The Equine Reader is the end result. Enjoy!
As for today’s contemplation, it centers on NTRA President and CEO Alex Waldrop’s recent announcement concerning the potential for developing a governing committee for the entire Thoroughbred industry, thereby changing its structure to reflect a “league” strategy akin to the NFL. While Waldrop supports the idea in theory, his main argument concerns the impossibility of collaborating the divergent arms of the industry under one main umbrella, and gaining acceptance for centralization of an industry in which individual decisions and profit motive drive most current business operations. The NTRA believes that participants in horse racing prefer to continue improving standards for safety and integrity (via the NTRA Alliance) than to turn operations decisions over to one commissioner or approval board.
I do agree that the task of centralizing something as variegated as the Thoroughbred industry might be a mightier challenge than would ever prove logistically possible. Deliberations about how and why to institute a top down structure would be likely be continuously stymied by conflicting interests. On the other hand, it’s worked for the FEI, even though that group controls a wider range of interests from across the globe, and represents multiple breeds and disciplines. Every substantial move made by horses competing through the FEI is logged and tracked, and while competitive decisions are left in the hands of owners and trainers, they have the support of FEI regulation. It occurs to me that having centralized control somewhere in the Thoroughbred industry could help to unify its messaging to horse racing fans, and also cut down on the red tape required to construct reform legislation.
How about you faithful readers? What are your thoughts?