Nothing quite compares to the mediagasm surrounding Saratoga every summer — and it’s not unjustified. The racing season is the only world class sporting event we have around here and the whole culture surrounding it is a big deal.
Who could blame TV stations for committing huge resources to live broadcasts or newspapers forÂ literally wrapping every edition in Saratoga coverage?
But over the weekend we saw something unusual: a piece from Times Union columnist Chris ChurchillÂ calling outÂ the racing industry on animal abuse and doping. He says that all it would take is a documentary like Blackfish to blow some of the shine off of Saratoga. This was one of the few timesÂ a local media outlet has doneÂ anything less than a glowing story about the track and racing.
Nobody wants to spoil the party, do they — but If you’d like to see what damaging reporting about racing looks like, see the devastating series Breakdown in the New York Times.
Being imperfect, I still enjoy going to the track and spending money. For the record, I also continue to love the NFL, even though I know the truth about how itÂ sometimes wrecks the players. I just can’t help it.
So, don’t expect to see a lot of negative stories about racing around here. Not as long as it’s front page news and there’s money to be made.