What’s On My Mind?

We live in a time when people sit in the same room and have a smart phone, iPad, or some sort of techno distraction as we no longer communicate. My girlfriend plays a game on her phone about trivia, and my son texts to his friends. I asked what they wanted to watch, and nobody answered back. The answer hit me like a ton of bricks which neither could comprehend. Unplug and relax. Remember? You sat around and learned about each other’s day, and what was on their plate. This got me to thinking about my Saturday morning rituals. I would do the shower and shave routine, and sit back with a glass of juice and turn on HRTV. I looked forward to getting the news, track info, and the latest scoops. No distractions, texts, or on-line games to keep me away from the one-of-a-kind info being served.

We keep up to speed on-line, and at the same time learn more about each other. Peter Lurie was let go from HRTV, and it appeared on many racing sites. Facebook is that place where some bear their soul, give an explanation, or just communicate on a larger stage. Mr. Lurie was the perfect fit, and he will be missed greatly by handicappers. He brought a sense of racing professionalism that is rare in these times. When I saw this post, I felt a lump in my throat you would only know if you have been laid off, downsized, or just let go. I’m not trying to speak for Mr. Lurie, but wanted to pass on to our readers that he is looking to the future. Best of luck, Peter. Hope to see you at the races soon!

It’s hard to put into words how much love and appreciation I have for everyone associated with Hrtv.. but even more so for all of you out there on FB and Twitter… no matter what happens, It gives me great joy to know in some small way, We made a difference. I’ve never been much of a religious person, but more of a spiritual being.. and I’ve always believed everything happens for a reason. Where ever I end up I truly believe it will be the right place.. and All of you out there I can only say THANK YOU for allowing me to be part of your lives… Trust me, I’m not going anywhere… Still got a lot more to accomplish… Be Well.”

I originally slammed the idea of the TVG/HRTV buyout, but started hoping that bigger heads would appreciate real talent. After further review, this is the beginning of the end of good television racing coverage. HRTV prided itself on having quality talent who know racing. This is not to say everyone at TVG is unprofessional, or a buffoon. But, there has been a history of goofing around and talking about wine, places to eat, and race coverage is shown when time allows. The sport is the star, and not the pretty people who talk about mani/pedi visits to the spa. I sure hope they turn up the heat, or more folks will lean away from the TVG/ADW. For me, I just turn down the sound or watch on computer. Unless you would have Thom “Tell-it-like-it-is” Amoss bringing us closer, or the return of Mr. B. – Racing coverage may stink until they remove their heads from the clouds.

Just when I thought things would settle down for awhile, I got back on social media to find out another bad decision has been made. I found this post from Aaron Vercruysse, who was speaking for he and his talented partner Jeff Siegel.

“Jeff and I did our last show together this morning on HRTV/TVG. It has been a blessing to have such a fun job (if you can call it a job, I never did). We are on to a different endeavor but know that race fans will hear from us again, only through a different outlet. Many thanks to all the friends made and fans of racing wherever you may be. I know I can speak for both of us in wishing TVG the best of luck, make racing proud.” Here is a Twitter

Jeff Siegel  ?@HRTVJeff             Mar 9

To those who have inquired, Aaron and I have completed our obligation to HRTV/TVG and will no longer be part of the talent rotation.

No more “The Player, Clocker’s Corner, or Inside Information.” I know I wasn’t alone enjoying quality programming, and I’m aware there are some casualties when something is bought out. It has happened to me and many other friends who work in racing, and no matter what is said, paid out, or posted. It’s never easy, and we only hope the best for these quality folks. It leaves me thinking what is the plan? Is there some master plan the public doesn’t know about? Maybe more communication would be a good start. Stop punishing the bettors and fans of the game, and let us plan ahead with no surprises. Best of luck to the talented folks who will no longer be a part of our Saturday mornings.


19 Responses to “What’s On My Mind?”

  1. the original says:

    i agree with you ed. i remember when tvg just started up it seemed like they were trying to monopolize the coverage. then daddy stronach joined forces with churchchill downs and put the hurt on them. they keep begging fans to open an account but cant provide professional handicappers to teach us how to handicap a race. i learn more handicapping tips from you and winning ponies. i was sad when they bought hrtv. not good.

  2. Ed Meyer says:

    Original –

    I enjoy the sport and it hurts to watch the powers that be send us to the penalty box.

    That being said, I remain optimistic that we’ll get our act together. I just pray it is before nobody cares anymore.

    Best of luck,


  3. Steve Pick says:

    Sad days as the people who provide professional analysis and in-depth discussion are not part of the television mix anymore. TVG can try, as Hollywood Park did, to appeal to a younger audience, but they will probably find the established long-time horseplayers that were the staple of HRTV, are the people that push money through the betting windows. I am giving it a couple months, but am already exploring the option of RTN with direct track feeds.

  4. Elizabeth Harding says:

    Really don’t care for commentators on tvg.very unprofessional(call fillies colts and vise versa). Miss Aaron, Peter, Jeff etc. Don’t like new format At All!! Miss everything from the old hrtv. Please get rid of those bimbo’s that don’t know which end of a horse eats, on tvg!! Please!!

  5. Barb says:

    I agree. I miss the HRTV personnel and do not like the TVG people moving to HRTV. I miss being able to see Santa Anita and other big tracks. UVERSE got rid of TVG and all I can get is HRTV. This was fine until the sale. I miss the Horizon, Across the Board and all of the other original programming.

  6. Mel Goble says:

    We looked forward to Aaron/Jeff/Peter’s comments and analysis on HRTV and felt as if we were “insiders”. TVG is a joke – fluff but no horse sense. When our cable contract comes due for review we will not have to pay extra for the racing channel.

  7. js smith says:

    HRTV had all the elements for the home handicapper to enjoy the races. Proper race graphics format/jockey trainer listings, payout page graphics/exciting hosts with great backgrounds. As TVG will find out, without these excellent elements their viewership will decline, in fact I recommend a boycott of the idiot TVG producers. Bring back the “REAL” talent or your 35 million purchase vwill be lost. TVG is a bad joke indeed.

  8. Jimbo says:

    HRTV-TVG merger stinks on ice. I was watching too much horse racing anyway. I won’t have that problem any more. Best horse analysts are gone and so am I. TVG sucks! So long suckers.

  9. Alexander Ivory says:

    How can you not find a place for Jeff and Aaron? Jeff knows more about the inner workings of Horse Racing than all the “experts” at TVG combined.

  10. Ed says:

    Agree 100%

    But, I’ll bet dollars to donuts we’ll start seeing these familiar faces again. – Peter Lurie going to work for Indiana Grand, and doing some harness work as well. It won’t be the same, but I’m glad to hear they are getting back out there.

    TVG has turned into the “Foodie Network” talking about dining out and where they vacation. – Didn’t they ever hear the old saying: ” If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it ?”

  11. Cary Kaplen says:

    What’s worse than losing Aaron,Jeff,Lafitte,Millie,Peter,et al is having to be force fed the inimitable,and incompetent,”four time major league all star,PaulLo Duca”.He just doesn’t have the talent for handicapping,or analysis.Since the merger,we get more of him,not less.Am I alone 0n this?

  12. jay georg says:

    that stupid todd schrup and simon are the ones that should have been fired.

  13. Donna Rife says:

    The industry sure didn’t need this. HRTV has been a class act and my family would cringe when our horses races were covered by TVG. As long as Jeff, Aaron, Petter and Laffit, Inside Eddition etc. are no more I’ll be watching our horses on the computer.
    Scott Hazelton and Christina are the only thing going for HRTV. now. MONEY CAN’T ALWAYS BUY EVERYTHING!

  14. Donna Rife says:

    And Millie Ball? Yep we’ll not be watching HRTV anymore because it’s TVG!!!!!
    What a sad thing to happen to racing!

  15. Donna Rife says:

    The industry sure didn’t need this. HRTV has been a class act and my family would cringe when our horses races were covered by TVG. As long as Jeff, Aaron, Petter and Laffit, Millie Ball, Inside Information etc. are no more I’ll be watching our horses on the computer.
    Scott Hazelton and Christina are the only thing going for HRTV. now. MONEY CAN’T ALWAYS BUY EVERYTHING!

  16. Angie Chavez says:

    Decidedly different opinion here. Many HRTV folks were very arrogant in their attitude, esp. Laffit and Jeff, as are many of these writers who are probably HRTV staff/relatives. TVG coverage over the years has been very good…they love the sport. Some of us aren’t in it for the betting but the love of racing. Aaron, Millie, Christina, Scott & Zoe were the only ones I could stomach. Talk about off topics on the air–how aboutr Jeff boasting how drifing a nice car got him a date with a girl back in the day. That’s your pro talent? So watch your computer screens. I’m doing just fine with TVG on tv.

  17. Todd says:

    Make no mistake about it….TVG is No HRTV without JEFF SIEGEL, MILLIE BALL, ZOE CADMEN, PETER LURIE with their KNOWLEDGABLE BACKGROUNDS …from Horse OWNER, Former JOCKEY, EXERCISE RIDER married to an up and coming TRAINER, Someone who NARRATES DOCUMENTARIES and is an actor!! What are they using for Brains….Hockey Pucks??

  18. SN Jeske says:

    I really miss Aaron and Jeff. TVG has its place but the good programming, from HRTV, is irreplaceable. So much more info on horses and oconnections. My tv is no longer on a horseracing channel all day.

  19. Elizabeth Fleming says:

    What happened? Your very interested fans were never informed. So far there is no replacement for these two nor for Zoe!

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