Digiturf has issued a press release with some positive enhancements for next seasons racing. Below is an outline of the changes.
Remember, we sell Digiturf Training Time (TT) charts for $25 in our store section!
Significant Enhancements Coming in New Digiturf and RaceClubs Season
In promoting the continued development of the Digiturf game and its growth into the future, we are happy to announce some unprecedented enhancements to the Digiturf game in the forthcoming season.
These changes follow extensive research and interaction with Digiturf members over the past couple of months in determining a list of game priorities. Undoubtedly the highlight of these enhancements are the changes we will be making to the Sales Ring which has been the most requested enhancement by members to date. We have listened and are happy to bring this to you.
We will be making a further announcement in mid July clarifying changes to the race program for the new Digiturf and RaceClubs season.
It must also be noted that the changes proposed to the current auction format so as to provide for more transparency will be included in the development schedule in the new season.
A summary of enhancements for the new season are summarised in the paragraphs below:
1. Enhanced Sales Ring
With effect from Wednesday 7 July 2010 from 7am GMT, together with the introduction of the Digiturf and RaceClubs Yearling Sales, we will be introducing certain changes to the horse population so as to improve the general quality of horses available for purchase. The following changes will be implemented in enhancing the Sales Ring:
a) We will remove a substantial chunk of the poor horses from each of the three grades.
b) The same number of horses removed from the database which are considered poor horses will be added back as improved horses in each of the grades. As such we are maintaining the 100,000 horse population but improving the chances of purchasing a better horse out of the Sales Ring.
c) We will be addressing the issue of ‘clones’ and ensuring a better distribution of good Digiturf horses across the various distances and goings in all grades. We must point out however that this change does not impact the length requirement for good horses overall and so what was considered a good horse in the past will remain the same in the revised population of horses.
With the changes being implemented to the Sales Ring we are confident that we will resolve many issues members have had with racing. As a result we anticipate a significant positive impact on field sizes across the board.
As stated, this change to the Sales Ring will be implemented at the opening of the Digiturf Yearling Sales, from which time all 1 year olds will come from the amended Sales Ring. All 2 and 3 year olds sold in the Sales Ring will continue to be from the old Sales Ring until the start of the new season.
2. Enhanced Rated Racing Structure
There were discussions recently to remove Digiturf Rated Racing from the game due to its alleged negative impact on Graded Races. We have since then engaged in extensive debates with affected members and have come to the conclusion that there is a large population of members who enjoy racing in these races and there is therefore convincing merit to retain this racing format.
In rationalising the Sales Ring and removing a large number of the poorer horses, we have narrowed the Grades to a point where the Class division is no longer practical or even possible. With effect from the new season it is necessary to reduce the number of Rated Racing levels, from 4, to 3 and in so doing bring these levels in line with the 3 grades. Horses will then be rated according to their grades, bringing the two systems in sync and therefore deploying one uniform grading system in the game.
Digiturf horses will no longer have a Class in Rated Racing, but only a Grade and a Rating. Races will be renamed accordingly. From next season these will be named as follows:
• Rated 1 (for Grade 1 horses)
• Rated 2 (for Grade 2 horses)
• Rated 3 (for Grade 3 horses)
Please note that yearling horses will not be rated until 1 August. Older horses will be re-rated according to their grades on 1 August 2010.
If you have a Grade 1 Class B horse at midnight GMT on 31 July 2010, it will be re-rated to 108, ie. at the bottom of Grade 1. If you have a Grade 2 Class C horse at midnight GMT on 31 July 2010, it will be re-rated to 85 at the bottom of Grade 2. All other horses will be rated at the Start rating of each grade, consistent with the current Rating rules.
3. Introduction of 34 Jockeys to Digiturf G1 racing
Following a season where G1 races attracted poor fields we have decided to re-introduce the full 34 jockeys to all G1 races. One exception will be Qualifying and Championship races which will remain with the current 17 jockey allocation.
We analysed prior Digiturf seasons G1 racing where the 34 jockeys were in place. We found a much more extensive spread of members entering these races resulting in larger fields and a much healthier G1 environment for all stables. We attribute this to a large degree to the perception by members that they have a chance to do better in these races. This does not mean that the top horses will not continue to excel but at least they will do so with a much larger population of horses to race against. We have to facilitate larger fields to ensure maximum enjoyment of racing by all members racing in the G1 races.
4. Returning Daily Training To 3/day at Digiturf
There is general consensus among members that the introduction of 6 training gallops last season took some degree of skill out of the game. It is generally perceived that this allowed ‘Monsters’ to make more frequent appearances in G1 races making it more difficult to compete. To further support improvements to the Sales Ring from 1 August, we will be reducing the training gallop allowance from the current 6 to 3. An exception to this is when training a new horse for the first time where members will continue to have unlimited training gallops until their horse attains a 90% fitness level. Members have asked that another exception be applied in the case where a horse is purchased off auction or in a claiming race. We will consider this development further in the new season.
We would like to encourage members to adopt the above Digiturf enhancements positively. As always we are here to listen to you and work hard in improving the game for all players. Enjoy the changes and get your horses ready for a feast of racing in the new season!