Horseracing, as presently practiced in America, is a dying industry. All the economic indicators bear this out: Number of races, racedates, starters per race, and, of course, total handle have been in steady decline for years. (The harness industry is even worse off – if not for slots welfare, the bulk, if not all, of Standardbred racing would have vanished by now.)
While much of the above can be attributed to competition – casinos, lotteries – an evolving public sensibility on animal exploitation for entertainment (see Greyhound racing, SeaWorld) plays a not insignificant part. Bottom line here, the younger generations are eschewing the ponies, leaving this archaic business with a pathetic stereotype for customers:
Little wonder that handwringing is the order of the day.