BY DON CLIPPINGER
Ushering in a new era for American jump racing, the National Steeplechase Association will institute high-definition video imagery at all of its race meets beginning next month.
“This is indeed a new day for our sport,” said NSA President Guy J. Torsilieri. “Stuart Janney, The Jockey Club’s chairman, recently called for all Thoroughbred races to be broadcast in high-definition, and the NSA will institute the highest-quality video beginning with the High Hope Steeplechase in Lexington on Sept. 23.
“The principal beneficiaries will be our stewards, who now will have real-time high-definition images to assure fair and safe racing. Beyond that significant benefit, our race meets will have access to the high-definition video to market their meets and to present steeplechase racing to a larger audience.”
Following a competitive bidding process that spanned four months, the NSA has awarded a contract to a new company formed by Steve Hankin, an entrepreneur and business executive with extensive experience in marketing, including social, digital, sponsorships and merchandising, and video equipment and production.
“We welcome Steve Hankin to the NSA family,” Torsilieri said. “We look forward to a long and productive relationship as we extend high-definition video capability and everything that it offers to all of our race meets.”
The competitive bidding process was facilitated by Al Griffin Jr., chairman of the NSA’s Promotion and Growth Committee, with the assistance of NSA Director of Racing Bill Gallo Jr. and Racing Operations Manager Courtney C. Reid.
“The potential uses of high-definition video are all but endless,” said Griffin, who is co-chairman of the Virginia Gold Cup and International Gold Cup. “Race meets and the NSA will be able to live-stream their races on their websites, and they can utilize high-quality video to market their meets year-round. In addition, the NSA website will feature high-quality replays of our races.
“In our partnership with Steve and his team, they will be working with the NSA and the individual meets to develop the best approach to bring these efforts to market to support the growth of the sport.”
Based in Los Angeles, Hankin is not a newcomer to steeplechase racing. His brother, Mike, is a member of the Bruton Street-US racing partnership and an NSA board member.