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Breeders' Cup Senior VP CARTER CARNEGIE was introduced to horse racing at a young age when his father took him to the track while growing up in France. But it was a job marketing basketball that ultimately helped him land in the sport he grew up loving. Carnegie joined the Breeders' Cup in '01 and is in charge of sponsorship, marketing and business development for the property. Although not much of a bettor himself, Carnegie took some time to explain his company's plans to make fans' experience at the Breeders' Cup Championship weekend a memorable one when it starts Friday.
Horse News Site: The Paulick Report
Channel for racing: TVG
App: Angry Birds.
Horse Racing App: Equibase
Horse: Goldikova as a modern-day horse, and as a kid, a horse that I remembered the most I would say Shergar.
Best bet you've made: Breeders’ Cup '08 in Los Angeles when the European horses won a lot of races. That morning I placed my bets for the day with all I had in my pocket, around $40, and that night when I cashed my tickets I walked away with around $3,000.
Favorite Horse Name: Blushing Groom, his sire was named Red God and his dam was named Runaway Bride.
Q: How did you get into horse racing?
Carnegie: I was working in sports marketing prior to it with Host Communications and a property called Hoop It Up and a joint venture we had with the NBA in Europe. Through Host, which is based in Lexington, (Ky.), they became associated with the NTRA, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, and they asked if anyone was interested in creating a corporate partner program for horse racing on a national level, and I put my hand up and I said, "Sounds interesting." So I decided to do it that way.
Q: What on-site activations are there going to be at the Breeders' Cup this year?
Carnegie: One of the things we’re doing this year is on Thursday night prior to the Championships, a dinner where all the owners and their friends are invited. And it’s going to be a food tasting from countries all over the world and the countries we’re representing are the countries who have in the 28 years of the Breeders' Cup have bred a horse that has run in the championships at some point. We’ll have countries like Chile, Australia, Argentina, Ireland and France, so we brought chefs from all of those places for a food tasting for those owners. ... Other types of on-site activations are special breakfasts in the mornings so the owners can go look at their horses training in the morning. For the fans, we’ll do lots of different things. ... We’re doing something new this year, and it sounds so simple but it really does work ... we’re giving away free programs to everyone that is a ticket holder. We’re giving everyone a free program, and that’s part of increasing the experience for the fans that are at the event.
Q: What do you think the Breeders’ Cup and horse industry can do to create and retain a larger fan base?
Carnegie: Big racing days seem to bring out the public. I don’t know how much Breeders' Cup can do to help make more people go to weekday racing, but what we need to do is create an event and an experience that introduces people to the sport, kind of a gateway into the game, so that they’ll want to get involved in the local or regional level, wherever their track is.
Q: What is a clear and measurable benefit you think a brand will receive being involved with the Breeders’ Cup?
Carnegie: I would say in general the nice thing about our property is that as a company you’re operating in a clutter-free environment where the people have a very strong affinity to this game. The cost of entry is probably less than a lot of other sports, but the quality of the people you’re going to reach is maybe better. So it’s a nice way to get involved where you don’t have to compete with so many other people to try and break the clutter and make sure the fan base recognizes that you’re associated with the game. Once you buy in with us, you’re getting your brand exclusively associated with everything Breeders' Cup.
Q: Last year there was a big increase in wagering and attendance. Are you expecting those kinds of numbers this year, or do you think Zenyatta played a role in that?
Carnegie: Zenyatta was a great athlete for us. She was a breakthrough. I think she brought a lot of people to racing that didn’t know the sport beyond the Derby, and you know how incredible these athletes are. ... I hope there’s obviously an effect of that continuing that we made a lot of new fans. One of the reasons the event was also so much bigger last year is because Churchill Downs is a much bigger venue than some of the other venues we go to, so it allows us to have more people at the event. ... Churchill has incredible facilities.
Q: Any plans to bring the Breeders' Cup back to Kentucky?
Carnegie: Kentucky is obviously the heart of the breeding industry, so we possibly will go back there. Next year we’re going to California and that’s really kind of all we know at this point.
Q: What is the Breeders' Cup doing in terms of social media around the event?
Carnegie: We have a pretty active Facebook page where we communicate with our fans and we’ll post a lot of inside information on there, especially with when the international horses are coming. We’ll use Twitter as well. We have a very good base of celebrities, especially last year with Zenyatta, who were able to create a lot of excitement around her, and we’ll use them again to talk about the Breeders' Cup and get people to tune in and let people know whose horse is the one they like. We have an iPhone and an iPad app that have won some awards. We’re just trying to get people introduced to our property and different horses because we’re so content rich in terms of how many horses are running and even how to wager and things of that nature. We put that out in the marketplace and it has done extremely well. I think (the app) was downloaded in 72 different countries.
The Cubs named former Padres GM JED HOYER Exec VP & GM and former Padres Assistant GM JASON MCLEOD Senior VP/Scouting & Player Development (Cubs). Sources said that Hoyer "signed a five-year deal that almost doubled the $600,000 he made annually running the Padres' front office" (ESPNCHICAGO.com, 11/1)....Hulman & Co. and Indianapolis Motor Speedway promoted the following: MICHAEL REDLICK to Senior VP and Chief Sales & Marketing Officer for IMS; RONALD GALLE to VP and CFO for Hulman & Co. and IMS; J. DOUGLAS BOLES to VP/Communications for Hulman & Co. and IMS; GRETCHEN SNELLING to VP and Chief Legal Counsel for Hulman & Co. and its subsidiaries; and MARLA FLOWERS to Dir of Operations for Hulman & Co. (IMS)....Fox promoted DAVID SAFRAN to Cable Sports Ad Sales Senior VP in charge of sales for Fuel and Fox Soccer, and JULIE SHARENOW to Speed Ad Sales Dir (Fox Sports Media Group)....The Mariners named former Padres Dir of Player Personnel CHRIS GWYNN Dir of Player Development (AP, 11/1)....The MLS Earthquakes named MATTHEW CHAN Account Exec (THE DAILY).
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UFC President DANA WHITE last week said that he "believes there are probably several gay fighters among the ranks of the more than 300 the company has under contract and added that he wishes at least one of them came out of the closet and identified himself." White "strongly defended his human rights record against attacks from the Culinary Workers Union, which attempted to paint him as anti-gay." He said that he "regretted using a crude word to describe a homosexual in a 2009 rant against a female reporter who had angered him." White said, “That's the one that bothers me. It’s the only one that bothers me, the fact that these losers from the culinary union can go out and say I’m a homophobe and things like that. That’s the furthest thing from the truth" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 11/1).
UPON FURTHER REVIEW: SI.com's Peter King reviewed MICHAEL HOLLEY's "WAR ROOM: THE LEGACY OF BILL BELICHICK AND THE ART OF BUILDING THE PERFECT TEAM," a book about Belichick, SCOTT PIOLI and THOMAS DIMITROFF "growing the Patriots" before Pioli and Dimitroff left to run the Rams and Falcons, respectively. King wrote, "I especially liked Holley fleshing out how the three men disagree." Whereas Belichick "takes chances on off-field risks," Dimitroff "won't touch problem children." Holley also "shows much of Belichick's human side -- at his father and mentor Steve's funeral" (SI.com, 10/31)....ESPN’s Dan Le Batard said of SHAQUILLE O'NEAL's upcoming book "SHAQ UNCUT" is "going to be a book worth reading and it’s going to be a precursor to a great broadcasting career.” Le Batard: "Shaq's not afraid of talking about things other people won’t talk about” (“Dan Le Batard Is Highly Questionable,” ESPN2, 11/1).
CHARITY STRIPE: Hockey HOFer GORDIE HOWE yesterday in Edmonton announced that the third annual Scotiabank Pro-Am Hockey Tournament will be held in six Canadian cities next year. Proceeds from the tourney will go to the Gordie and Colleen Howe Fund for Alzheimer’s (EDMONTON SUN, 11/2)....Colts Owner JIM IRSAY presented Indianapolis' Arsenal Technical High School band with a check for $130,000 to help pay for a trip to Hawaii for the 70th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 11/2).
NAMES: D'Backs President & CEO DERRICK HALL will undergo surgery for prostate cancer on Nov. 8 (D'Backs)....A source said that free agent RF CARLOS BELTRAN "has left SCOTT BORAS' agency and is now represented by DAN LOZANO," who also reps free agents 1B ALBERT PUJOLS and SS JIMMY ROLLINS (ESPN.com, 11/1)....The NBA lockout will keep Bobcats Owner MICHAEL JORDAN from going to Australia to serve as assistant captain for the U.S. Presidents Cup team. He will be replaced by golfer JOHN COOK (AP, 11/1)....MLS is working with D&E Entertainment to provide marketing support for the theatrical premiere of "RISE & SHINE: THE JAY DEMERIT STORY," which is set for nationwide release tomorrow (MLS)....NFL Panthers OL ZACK WILLIAMS, TE GARY BARNIDGE and WR DAVID GETTIS yesterday played the "Call of Duty: Black Ops" video game against wounded veterans as part of an event organized by nonprofit Pro vs. GI Joe (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 11/2)....The Univ. of Oklahoma will unveil a statue of former coach BARRY SWITZER before Saturday's game against Texas A&M (NEWSOK.com, 10/31)....Singer and actress REBA MCENTIRE will host the '11 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Awards Ceremony Dec. 2 at Wynn Las Vegas (SCENDAILY.com, 11/1)....NFL Giants Chair & Exec VP STEVE TISCH is dating MICHELLE BARISH and the couple has been "spotted dining out at restaurants including Crown on the Upper East Side." Tisch is "hosting a birthday bash for Barish on the rooftop of the Gramercy Park Hotel" (N.Y. POST, 11/2).
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