FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, November 1st, 2012
NBC SPORTS BREEDERS’ CUP CALL TRANSCRIPT
October 31, 2012
Good day and welcome to the NBC Breeders’ Cup conference call. Today’s conference is being recorded and later there will be a question and answer session. At that time if you would like to ask a question you can press the Star then 1 to enter the question queue, and the # key to remove yourself from the queue.
At this time I would like to turn the conference over to Mr. Adam Freifeld.
Adam Freifeld: (Zach), thanks very much and thanks everyone for joining us. If you’re on the East coast I hope you have power and I hope you survived the storm. If you’re on the West coast you know the weather is beautiful and hopefully I’ll make it out there tomorrow to join you guys.
It’s exciting at NBC to have the Breeders’ Cup back. It’s the first time we’ve had it back since 2006 and we originated the Breeders’ Cup in 1984. So it’s great to have it back. And for the first time ever, the Breeders’ Cup Classic will be in prime time. That will be Saturday at 9:00 – I’m sorry, at 8:00 eastern time. And our coverage begins Friday, from 4:00 to 8:00 on NBC Sports Network. And again Saturday from 3:30 to 8:00 on NBC Sports Network, then we turn it over at 8:00 to NBC for the Breeders’ Cup Classic.
On the phone with us today is the host of our thoroughbred racing coverage, Tom Hammond. Gary Stevens, our analyst who has won, correct me if I’m wrong Gary but I believe eight times at the Breeders’ Cup. And our horse racing analyst Randy Moss is with us. And before we open it up – and also we have Rob Hyland who produces all of our thoroughbred racing coverage for NBC and NBC Sports Network. Before we open it up to questions let’s hear from our speakers and let’s start with Tom Hammond.
Tom Hammond: Well as you said Adam, this is a homecoming for both NBC and for me personally. We did the first 22 years of the Breeders’ Cup. When it first started in 1984 we weren’t sure what we had on our hands and it’s been sort of a work in progress. And we really grew to love the event over those years.
It was the first full thing I did for NBC Sports and at the end of the first day of races in Hollywood Park in 1984, Michael Weisman who was then the executive producer said, “Would you be interested in doing other things for NBC Sports starting with NFL football?” So I’ve been working for NBC in a variety of capacities ever since then.
One thing we did learn in the first 22 years that we did it, that it is a world class event and that’s why it’s a worthy prime time show for the classic this year. North America’s richest race, $5 million. And we’ll showcase those runners in a primetime program on NBC. And there are, as always, a variety of story lines. As I’ve said before, thoroughbred racing, to me next to the Olympics, has the greatest stories of any of the sports that we cover. And so we’re looking forward to that.
It’s a lot of races, a lot of racing. A lot of top horses, jockeys, trainers. And we’ll try to tell the most compelling stories of all those. But most of all we’re just happy to welcome the Breeders’ Cup back to NBC where it belongs. It was here originally and we’re glad to have it back with us.
Adam Freifeld: Great, thank you Tom. We’ll go to Gary. Gary talk about what we should expect to see Saturday in primetime in the Classic.
Gary Stevens: Well first of all this is a special treat for me. I joined NBC in 2006 and this is my first Breeders’ Cup that I’ve been able to cover. I’m excited about it, we’ve got two great days of racing all culminating with the icing on the cake in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. It is probably the race that this year’s classic has more depth than I’ve seen in probably the last 15 years.
There are a number of horses that have outstanding chances. Billy Mott, three runners in this year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic. And then Bob Baffert with the likely favorite Game On Dude, he’s undefeated on this racetrack. But, as I’ve said before, you can make a case for seven or eight horses in there. If they bring their A game to this race, I think we’re in for a great treat to close out the Breeders’ Cup with and I’m truly looking forward to it.
Adam Freifeld: Great, thank you Gary. And Randy, it’s more than just that primetime race on NBC. It’s two days’ worth of racing and a whole bunch of great horses. So if you could talk about that, that would be great.
Randy Moss: Yeah, sure, you’re talking about 15 championship caliber races over a two day period. Different distances, different surfaces. Grass and dirt. All sorts of different categories of horse. And it’s something that horse racing fans eagerly look forward to all year long. Now, everybody knows about the American Triple Crown Series for three year olds. It’s sort of part of the cultural fabric of America. But it’s had more than a century head start on the Breeders’ Cup.
Within the industry itself, winning the race at the Breeders’ Cup is almost as important to these owners, trainers, and breeders as winning a triple crown race. So it is an extremely important day, and not just in this country but across the world. Because it gets something that the triple crown really doesn’t get on a regular basis, and that’s international participation.
Adam Freifeld: That’s great, we’re going to turn it over to Rob Hyland in a second but if you want to ask questions after Rob speaks, Star 1 on your phone to queue up to ask a question. Rob Hyland who is our thoroughbred racing producer, he’s tasked with producing 9.5 hours of coverage this year at the Breeders’ Cup, and Rob what should we expect?
Rob Hyland: Well I would expect pretty similar coverage to our Triple Crown in terms of the camera compliments being around 30 cameras. With some fun toys, super slow motion cameras, extreme slow motion cameras, a gyro-stabilized camera in a car on the inner working track – which we’ve never done before on NBC, it should be fun to see.
You know, I’m going to touch upon what Tom and Randy have touched upon already. This is a world class event, the different distances, the different ages, the different services, horses coming from around the world. And I think from a production philosophy, to me as someone who has covered seven Olympic games, this is the Olympics of horse racing.
And the production philosophy over the course of the two days is really to get to know the stories of this year’s world championships. And I think we have a pretty good plan in place with a number of features we’ll be telling over the 9.5 hours of coverage.
Adam Freifeld: Great, thanks Rob. We’ll open it up for questions in a second but joining the guys who are on the call out at Santa Anita we’ll have Jerry Bailey, he has 15 Breeders’ Cup wins including five wins in the classic. Our handicappers, you know those guys Battaglia and Neumeier. Laffit Pincay III will be there, Kenny Rice, Donna Brothers, Jay Privman, and we’re adding Nick Luck this year. Making his debut. And Larry Collmus who will call the ladies classic and the Breeders’ Classic. And Trevor Denman, the track announcer, you’ll hear him on the rest of them.
And also Michelle Beadle, who is Access Hollywood’s host and with NBC Sports will be out there. And she’ll cover sort of the spectacle and the scene of the Breeders’ Cup. As well as contributing some features and handling celebrity interviews. So let’s open it up to questions now (Zach), if that’s okay.
Operator: Absolutely, and at this time if you would like to ask a question please press the Star and 1 on your Touch-tone phone. You may remove your question from the queue at any time by pressing the # key. Again, it’s Star and 1 if you’d like to ask a question. And we’ll go first to the site of Barry Horn with Dallas Morning News, please go ahead.
Barry Horn: Yeah, this is for Tom. Tom for the casual viewer, how would you compare this Saturday to a Triple Crown Saturday?
Tom Hammond: Well, you know, it’s a whole different animal because you have the different categories here. Whereas the Triple Crown is just for three year olds, it’s a one and done when you race in the Triple Crown. You only get the one shot at it. And here you’ll see eight horses that will compete over these two days that have previously won Breeders’ Cup races. Royal Delta is one of those that is coming back to try to repeat, she won the ladies classic last year and will be the favorite this year again in what may be the best race of the two days, the Ladies Classic.
But I just think it’s a championship day. You can enjoy it. Whereas the Triple Crown is a grueling series where you go, you know, over the three races of the Triple Crown in that short period of time. Here it’s sort of a one game for the championship if you will. A showdown for the championship. So it’s a championship day. Each race represents a world championship and, you know, it’s sort of win it or not. Whereas in the Triple Crown you have a three race series.
Barry Horn: Thank you.
Operator: And we’ll go next to the site of Ed Sherman with shermanreport.com, please go ahead.
Ed Sherman: Yeah, hey guys maybe this is for Rob. I’m just wondering, just talk about the late start. The primetime, you know that’s 8:00 in the East coast, and I’m just kind of wondering what kind of lights we’re going to be looking at as far as it’s going to be late in the afternoon in LA. Is that going to kind of give the race a different look and feel? You know, just talk about the primetime and what kind of light we’ll see from the race.
Rob Hyland: That is a good question. I was down at the track two nights ago with our director Jeff Simon and we went out at the time of the load for the Breeders’ Cup Classic. And it’s going to present a totally different look and feel in terms of the setting.
First of all you’re at one of the most beautiful racetracks in America in Santa Anita. But setting against the backdrop of the San Gabriel mountains, with the sun cascading down, it’s going to be pretty darn dramatic. Now if the race were delayed significantly would we be in jeopardy of losing light? It would be a very, very significant delay for that to happen. But from a setting standpoint, that sort of orange tones that present themselves on the mountains in the distance are going to be pretty spectacular and I’m looking forward to having the opportunity to do a race in this unique setting.
Tom Hammond: I think the cameras see a little better than the human eye does too. But if it should start to get darker from some delay. But I remember the most dramatic Breeders’ Cup race I can remember was in 1988 at Churchill Downs in the rain and fog, it was almost dark. Didn’t look so bad on camera, but in person it was almost dark. And Alysheba came charging out of that mist and darkness to win the Classic and become, at that time, the world’s all-time leading money winner. So we welcome a little drama.
Rob Hyland: Gary Stevens rode in that race and he needed one of those miner’s hats with the searchlight on it there to see the finish.
Gary Stevens: It is a big problem for jockeys. At least that Breeders’ Cup was. I rode in the classic that year on a horse named Cutlass Reality and I was looking for the last horse to be loaded into the starting gate and I saw a horse behind the gate and I was only half tied on for the (break). And they kicked the gate, the whole stack behind was a pony horse, and if you’ve got a lot of goggles on it’s hard to see anyway. But, yeah, the darkness gets to be a problem. There’s no light there at Santa Anita.
Tom Hammond: It should be perfect, it should be really beautiful. The weather now is gorgeous.
Ed Sherman: Rob, could you also talk about the primetime aspect. At least from the East and Central, about having a race go off that late. And obviously, you get more viewers? What’s the expectation there from a ratings standpoint?
Rob Hyland: I can’t speak to the ratings or the programming decisions, I can speak to the production. And the overall production, being that it’s in primetime, is not going to waiver very much from how we cover the Triple Crown. It’s going to be an inviting telecast. It’s going to be as welcoming to the novice viewer as possible and you know it models – you know it follows our model for horseracing on NBC to try to you know generate new fans.
We know the horseracing fans will be watching anyway, and sort of our production philosophy, regardless of what time it airs, will welcome the broadest audience possible.
Tom Hammond: And I think sports fans are used to seeing championship sporting events in primetime. It’s nothing new to them; they are used to it by now.
Ed Sherman: Right. Thanks guys.
Operator: And we will go next to the (site) of Stuart Levine with Variety. Please go ahead.
Stuart Levine: Hey, guys. I know this isn’t the first time you are coming back to NBC after being on ESPN for a while, but this is actually – the majority of the day is going to be on NBS Sports Network and not NBC proper.
From any of you guys’ perspective, is that a way that you would present the race? Do you think your more knowledgeable racing fans since it’s a sports network rather than if it was on NBC broadcast?
Tom Hammond: You know Stuart I think that the way we present our coverage will not be dramatically different. We have a pretty proven way of showcasing horseracing. And as you said, the hardcore fans are going to be there, but you know our coverage is not going to look different when we get on the network at 8 o’clock on Saturday night.
Stuart Levine: And to follow up with that, obviously you know the Classic will be in primetime. Do you see this as a trend to try to get new viewers to bring maybe some of the Triple Crown races? I know the Derby has been talked about as being in primetime for a while with putting up lights at Churchill. Do you see that as kind of the next step as far as trying to bring new fans to the sport for anybody?
Tom Hammond: You know it has been discussed. I think that NBC has said that that is not their aim at the moment. I’m not sure what Churchill Downs thinks about it, but I’m sure it will be a you know combined effort if they do consider it. But as of now, it (spans) into 7 o’clock almost – the broadcast already. And I don’t know that you would gain any – a whole lot of additional viewers if you change it.
To me, the Derby is a whole series of events that take place over all of the afternoon, and to cut it down into a primetime show of an hour like the Classic is now, I think would shorten the drama and the experience of it all, so you know that’s for people other than us to decide. Whether it goes into primetime or not, but you know who knows.
Gary, when you were riding, did you have a preference? I know they do (night riding) in Hollywood. Did you have a preference riding at nighttime? Did it bother you as a jockey at all?
Gary Stevens: No, it didn’t bother me at all. Most of these races, especially Churchill Downs, is well lit. It is like riding during the day believe it or not, but to me, the Kentucky Derby is a daytime event. You see all of the beauty of the day with the lighting, the beautiful dresses on the women and that whole spectacle, so like Tom said, that is not our decision to make. And whatever decisions were to be made in the future, we will follow right along with them.
Stuart Levine: Thanks guys.
Operator: And we will go next to the site of Jim Williams with the Washington Examiner. Please go ahead.
Jim Williams: Thanks very much. I have a question for Gary and one for Rob. Gary, with so many different races on both Friday and Saturday, did you ever run in multiple races? And if so, what are the challenges for a jockey who may run as many as three or four races over the two days?
Gary Stevens: Yes, I did on multiple occasions have several opportunities, and this year, John Velazquez has (11 mounts), Garrett Gomez) 10, Joe Talamo 10, Rosario 10, so there are multiple jockeys that have several opportunities. And what that does is the Derby, like Tom said, it’s one and done, and if you have high hopes and you are beaten, it’s a little harder to take.
Whereas in the Breeders’ Cup, since you have multiple chances or opportunities for the day, if you get beat on one, you have the luxury of saying forget about that one – it’s (turf history). Going out and focusing on the next race and it’s actually a great feeling.
You prepare no differently for any one of the races than you would prepare for the other ones, very much we prepare for this show. We’ve all done our homework, those jockeys have done their homework, and it’s just an exciting day, especially if you have multiple chances or opportunities.
Jim Williams: Thanks and Rob, my quick question for you is you had alluded earlier that this is basically the Olympics of horseracing. What are some of the challenges since every one of these races has you know a great impact on a worldwide basis? What are some of the challenge you face as the producer and your production team in you know conveying that?
Rob Hyland: In conveying those challenges, the challenge of any horserace is the unknown. You know you’ve got a dozen horses, and races, a dozen jockeys, and owners, a dozen trainers, and the winner will take you in any direction and you need to be ready to react to that. And also, you know horses you know are fragile. There are scenarios where there could be injuries whether it be the horse or the human, so you know the structure of the day can dramatically change in an instant based on the events that are unfolding in the live event.
So whereas a derby is you know sort of a three-hour formatted show for a two-minute race, there are so many other opportunities with the variables presented in horseracing to kind of derail you from you know a format you may have been working on for the last two months. so that’s the only challenge in being ready to react and I think we have got an unbelievable production and announce team in place to be ready to react in any direction should we need to go in that direction.
Tom Hammond: For the announcers, the challenge is to know something about all of these horses, trainers, and jockeys, and it’s a daunting task. I remember the very first year we did the Breeders’ Cup. It was amazing that you see a great race and bang all of a sudden here comes another one, and it takes a while to get used to that and to know something about all of the connections and all of the horses is something that is a pretty tough task.
Jim Williams: Looking at this list of talent, I think the most challenging position might very well be the audio guy. All right, thank you guys very much.
Rob Hyland: Yeah, he’s one of the best. It’s tough.
Operator: And we will go next to the site of Larry Stewart with Los Angeles Daily News. Please go ahead. Your line is open.
Larry Stewart: Yeah Adam I’m not sure. Is (Jerry Bailey) on the call?
Adam Freifeld: He is not, but he will be on the air for us. He’s not on the call.
Larry Stewart: Okay, well Rob can maybe answer this question. With Mike Smith more than likely becoming the all-time winningest Breeders’ Cup jockey, is the plan to have Gary interview him right away after he gets the record – his 16h win.
Rob Hyland: Yeah, Larry, you know we actually do our post-race interviews on horseback and Donna Brothers does the interviews. We are planning a really special feature about Mike Smith that deals with his 2012 sort of Triple Crown disappointment if you will. His second place finishes in all three legs and then you know it even looks back to the horse of a lifetime in his words, Zenyatta, and the defeat she suffered in 2010.
And you know there is a record and you know this could very well go down and we are planning a very nice piece about it, and I would come out to an on camera with the guys that would include (Jerry)’s thoughts about it.
Larry Stewart: Yeah, Rob, I have another question for you. What’s the thinking about using (Trevor) for all of the races except the two classics and using (Larry) as the – to call those races. What’s the thinking about doing it that way?
Rob Hyland: You know it’s a little bit of a coordinated effort between NBC and the Breeders’ Cup. (Trevor) does a phenomenal job and has been calling Breeders’ Cup races for a number of years, and we welcome him. Larry Collmus is our horseracing announcer on the Triple Crown and on our major races, so I wanted to get him on the air for at least a race on Friday and the Classic, which is on NBC, on Saturday. So we have two of the best race callers in the business, and to me, it’s a treat to have the two guys associated with this race.
Larry Stewart: So it’s not a case of where you need your own announcer on those races; it’s just you want to get Larry on the air.
Rob Hyland: Yeah, I mean anytime you’ve got members of your production team or announce team that is a part of one of your signature events; you want the guy that calls that to be a part of that.
Larry Stewart: Yes. Okay, thanks a lot Rob.
Rob Hyland: No problem Larry.
Operator: And we will go next to the site of Jason Dachman with Sports Video Group. Please go ahead.
Jason Dachman: Hey guys, a couple of questions for Rob real quick. Rob can you talk a little bit more about that gyro-stabilized camera that you were talking about and you know how it is going to add to the telecast as well as any other cool new things you have from kind of the technical side?
Rob Hyland: Sure Jason. You know the gyro-stabilized camera – it has been done before. Not by us, by another network, but it’s something NBC hasn’t done. It’s a stabilized camera in essentially an SUV. And in Santa Nita, it’s a unique track in that inside of the turf track there is an interworking track that cars can drive on, and it’s going to supply shots and provide shots of you know the horses on the backstretch and you know at the speed they are traveling. And you are basically going onboard with the horses.
You know we may use it live a couple of times in races, but it’s more for a great replay and it goes all the way around the entire track. So as the horses are approaching the wire, you are going to have unbelievable shots with the grandstand in the background, and we are really excited about showcasing this camera.
Randy Moss: I can just add a little bit to that. That particular camera has been a staple of television coverage throughout Europe and Dubai for a long time. It’s logistically been a challenge in the United States because at a lot of racetracks there is no place that you can drive the Jeep to really get a good shot of the horses. You know fortunately here at Santa Anita, we are able to pull that off.
Randy Moss: I first saw it at the Arc de Triomphe in France many years ago and it was a spectacular shot, so I’m glad we are doing it.
Jason Dachman: Okay, looking forward to it and one more thing for you Rob. Ever since you guys kind of revamped your Triple Crown coverage, you’ve really been pushing graphics and on-screen sort of horse tracking stuff and that kind of thing. Are you guys going to push that for the Breeders’ as well? Are we going to see that same kind of thing?
Rob Hyland: Absolutely, (Jason). It’s going to look very similar to a Triple Crown telecast at NBC. So you’ll se a lot of the same graphic enhancements, virtual enhancements that we’ve done in our Triple Crown coverage.
Jason Dachman: Cool. Thanks, guys.
(Zack): And we’ll go next to the side of (Pete Dority) with the (Albany Tax). Please go ahead.
(Pete Dougherty): Oh, hi. Question for Rob. I’m not sure you’re the best person to answer, but – I’ll throw it at you anyways. Just interested where the Breeders’ Cup was – in terms of the overall network strategy of horse racing. I know you – you’ve managed to get the all three Triple Crown races. Was that an important jewel to have that as part of the – this may be becoming the kind of the place to go for horse racing?
Rob Hyland: Okay listen, I can’t, (Pete), speak on behalf of the programming decisions and the acquisition of programming. But from the production standpoint I think it’s a no-brainer to be, you know, the home of horse racing and to be able to present the biggest horse racings on one network or family of networks where viewers can know to turn to look for those events. And they all look and sound very similar, and I think, you know, from a production standpoint it makes a lot of sense. And we present each of our races throughout the year in a very similar fashion.
(Peter Dougherty): Is there a familiarity – knowledge you do all the races that’s among the horse people that are kind of comfortable having you guys around?
Rob Hyland: I’m sorry. Say again?
(Peter Dougherty): I said is it – because you’re just about everywhere now, I mean, does that help as far as this being – having the horse people familiar with – with you and your group?
Rob Hyland: Yes, you know, from a production standpoint a lot of our cameramen and audio technicians have become very familiar faces around the back side, in the barns and that really does help. But I – I go back to my announcers themselves. They’re out there every morning, you know, talking to trainers and jockeys and the owners, and the familiarity at both the production and engineering level as well as the announcer level I think definitely gives us an advantage in our shows because they see the same faces week in and week out.
Adam Freifeld: And hey guys, this is Adam. Hey (Pete), you know, two years ago we reassembled the Triple Crown. We also added those races up by you at Saratoga, and getting the Breeders’ Cup, it really cements, you know, NBC Sports group as the leader in Thoroughbred horse racing coverage. So this was a pretty important cog to our programming strategy.
(Pete Dougherty): Okay. Thanks, guys.
(Zack): And we’ll go next to the side of (Fred Angst) with Blood-Horse magazine. Please go ahead.
(Fred Angst): Hey, guys. This question would be for Gary. Gary, how big is it for horse racing to have a shot to be on Prime Time on network television?
Gary Stevens: Well it’s the first time ever…
(Fred Angst): Yes.
Gary Stevens: …that this has happened and it’s a huge shot in arm not only for NBC but in my opinion for the sport of Thoroughbred horse racing and all the players to be showcased in Prime Time. And I think that’s been the goal since there’s been television is to actually have a Prime Time event. And fortunately we have that this year. It’s going to showcase the stars that we have in this sport which is – needed to be done for a long time, and this is the perfect venue to do it.
(Fred Angst): Have you talked to some of the participants and are they aware of the opportunity here?
Gary Stevens: Absolutely they’re aware of it. And the jockeys today are a lot more educated than we were back in the day of the power of marketing, and the face that – they are the familiar faces. Unfortunately our horses because of possible injury or early retirement because of their value, it’s tough for the fans out there to relate to a top horse. There’s only one Zenyatta that comes along in a lifetime. But these jockeys are – they are the stars of the show along with the horses. But you see down at – most of these guys at all of the big venues including the Triple Crown races.
(Fred Angst): Thanks, Gary.
(Zack): Go next to the side of (Mike Ferrell) with the Associated Press. Please go ahead.
(Mike Ferrell): Question first, and I guess this might go to Rob. In terms of the package – the Prime Time show, is that exclusively focusing on the Classic or how much of that will include recaps and/or highlights of what’s happened in the earlier 14 races?
Rob Hyland: Well again it is going to focus exclusively on the Classic unless there was a story that needed to be addressed that related to the Classic that occurred earlier in the day, i.e., a jockey, you know, going for his 11th win over the course of the two days, or an injury to a jockey that’s competing regardless of tha- – in spite of that. So it’s going to focus on the Classic.
Now, you know, Tom and Gary and Randy and the rest of our team, we’ll probably mention in conversation, you know – they will of course – what this event is all about, but the focus is going to be the $5 million Classic.
(Mike Ferrell): And then I guess a point of kind of clarification here. Is this an experiment or is this now a permanent switch in the schedule? Has there been a commitment made to put the Classic on now permanently at nighttime or is this just to see what happens?
Adam Freifeld: Hey (Mike), it’s Adam Freifeld. This was afforded to us because of the location, we were able to put this on in Prime Time. And our, you know, network entertainment group agreed with that. We know it’ll be in Prime Time this year. Next year it’ll be in Santa Anita again and we’ll revisit it at that point.
(Mike Ferrell): Okay, so this is not – not be fair to characterize this as a permanent switch at this point.
Adam Freifeld: You’re right.
(Mike Ferrell): Okay. Thanks.
(Zack): And we’ll take our last question from Stuart Levine with Variety. Please go ahead.
Stuart Levine: Hey, guys. Just to talk it up a little bit. I know, you know, the date – the venues for the Breeders’ Cup have shifted, you know, year to year. You know, it was Churchill and Belmont and I know – Woodbine a few ti- – a couple times. Now that we’re back in Santa Anita this year and again next year, I kind of want to get your feelings – maybe Randy or Gary – about keeping it at Santa Anita permanently where you know the weather is, you know, predictable be – going to be nice and you have the mountains – the San Gabriels in the background it makes for a beautiful backdrop. Or do you think it’s more fair to shift it, you know, maybe back East to – giving the East Coast or maybe the European based horses a little bit of a – advantage rather than coming all the way out west.
Randy Moss: Hello, this is Randy. I mean, as is often the case with a lot of topics in Thoroughbred racing there is a difference of opinion on that particular topic. But I think the consensus opinion is that leaving the Breeders’ Cup in California for example would be too much of an advantage – a permanent advantage to the West Coast horses and horsemen as opposed to the East Coast. I think there’s much greater sentiment for moving the Breeders’ Cup around as it has historically been moved around.
And I think in the future you’re even going to see more racetracks get into the mix. For example, Del Mar is considering, you know, widening their turf course to make it possible for them to host a Breeders’ Cup. They’re very much interested in that. Keeneland has talked about being in the mix at some point. Gulf Stream Park which has not hosted a Breeders’ Cup since the track was renovated is talking about, you know, adding seeding that might make it possible for them to get back in the mix. So I – I think it’s almost a certainty that you’re going to continue to see the Breeders’ Cup being moved around from track to track and from geographical area to geographical area.
Stuart Levine: And Gary, how do you feel about that?
Gary Stevens: I agree with Randy. When the Breeders’ Cup was started that was the idea, to have it in different locations, different venues there. He’s 100% right. It’s more difficult for the European horses even to come to the West Coast rather than the East Coast because of the temperature changes. These horses – a lot of them have already started to develop their winter coats and they come out here, it’s been hot. We caught a break in the weather. It’s cooled down drastically today and the next couple of days, which I think the European horses are really going to enjoy and we’re expecting perfect weather on the weekend. Not too hot and not too cold. But it could’ve been – extremely hot and that would’ve been a huge disadvantage to the East Coast horses and especially the European horses.
Stuart Levine: And Rob or Adam, if you want chime in for this. Obviously the decision would have to be made if the show does well in Prime Time and because L.A. – because, you know, Southern California with the time difference that would work. That – those – moving into the East Coast might be difficult for a Prime Time show if NBC wanted to do that again next year.
Adam Freifeld: Well next year it’s back at Santa Anita.
Stuart Levine: Oh I’m sorry, I meant the year after that if you wanted to move it again.
Adam Freifeld: Well we’ll have to see where it goes.
Stuart Levine: Yes. Thank you, guys.
(Zack): And there are no further questions in queue. I’d like to call – turn the call back over our presentation for any closing remarks.
Adam Freifeld: All right, (Zack). Thank you. Thanks to Tom, Gary, Randy, and Rob for joining us. All the writers on the call, I appreciate you gu- – you joining us as well. There will be a replay at 719-457-0820. The pass code for the replay is 177-5394. And we will have a full transcript of the call that will be available later today at nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com. That’s one word, nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com. As always you can contact me either by email or later today on my cell phone: 917-597-7762. Thanks again, and that concludes the call.
(Zack): And this does conclude today’s teleconference. You may now disconnect, and have a wonderful day.