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Monday, August 18, 2014

HBPA Horsemen Reaffirm Their Support of Lasix

The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (NHBPA) restated its strong support for the continued use of Lasix at its summer convention held August 15-17, 2014 in Oklahoma City. Lasix is currently the only recognized treatment for pulmonary bleeding, a serious exercise induced disease that affects nearly all race horses. In doing so, the National HBPA joins the Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association (THA), the Thoroughbred Owners of California (TOC) and the California Thoroughbred Trainers (CTT) in supporting Lasix use. Together these four horsemen's groups have nearly 50,000 owner and trainer members who race in the United States and Canada.

Those attending the Oklahoma City convention heard a panel of nationally recognized experts that stated current medical science does not support The Jockey Club's call for banning the race day use of Lasix, a ban that would inevitably be harmful to horses. The Jockey Club, a 100 member private organization, proposed doing so as part of its support for federal regulation of racing stated at its recent Round Table meeting in Saratoga Springs, New York.

Ironically, The Jockey Club chose to ignore a landmark 2009 scientific study, which it largely funded, conclusively proving the effectiveness of Lasix as treatment for pulmonary bleeding in race horses. The Jockey Club also ignored the advice of the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC), an industry wide group of which it is a member. The RMTC found no medical or scientific reason for discontinuing the use of Lasix.  Similarly, The Jockey Club brushed aside racing experience in New York where it is headquartered. With the advent of Lasix treatment in 1995 the incidence of epistaxis in New York racing, the most severe form of pulmonary bleeding in horses, immediately dropped by 80%.

Pulmonary bleeding is inextricably associated with horses, and puts the health of horses and safety of jockeys at risk. Until a better treatment for this progressive disease is identified, there is no possible ethical or humane justification for depriving racing horses and their riders of the protective therapeutic benefits of Lasix.

The National HBPA (www.nationalhbpa.com) based in Lexington, KY is the largest racing horsemen’s representative organization in North America with 29 affiliate organizations and over 30,000 member horsemen. Big Dee’s Tack & Vet Supply’s, Equineline.com, Finish Line Horse Products Inc., and Horseman Labor Solutions are proud corporate partners of the National HBPA.

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Jockey Club Projects Foal Crop of 22,000 in 2015

The Jockey Club is projecting a 2015 North American registered Thoroughbred foal crop of 22,000, it was announced by Matt Iuliano, the organization’s executive vice president and executive director.

The projections for the 2013 and 2014 foal crops were 23,000 and 22,000, respectively.

“The projection for the 2015 foal crop is based on reports of mares bred received to date, and we estimate that approximately 80% of those reports have been received,” Iuliano said.

Additional foal crop information is available in The Jockey Club’s Online Fact Book at jockeyclub.com/factbook.asp and in the online state fact books.

The foal crop projection, traditionally announced in mid-August, is computed by using Reports of Mares Bred (RMBs) received to date for the 2014 breeding season. RMBs are to be filed by August 1 of each breeding season.

Stallion owners who have not returned their RMBs for the 2014 breeding season are encouraged to do so as soon as possible. Interactive Registration, which enables registered users to perform virtually all registration-related activities over the Internet, is the most efficient means of submitting RMBs and is available at registry.jockeyclub.com.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Round Table Conference Available via Live Video Stream

The Jockey Club will provide a live video stream for Sunday’s 62nd Annual Round Table Conference on Matters Pertaining to Racing from Saratoga Springs, N.Y. The two-hour conference begins at 10 a.m. EDT, and the live video stream will be available at jockeyclub.com.

The Round Table Conference agenda will feature Brian Rolapp, the executive vice president of NFL Media and the president and CEO of the NFL Network, who will share insights into the National Football League’s media strategies, and Denis Egan, the chief executive of the Irish Turf Club, who will provide an update on jockey safety and welfare initiatives.

The program will also provide updates on medication reform efforts in the United States, a study on equine drug testing and enforcement, an analysis of racing trends and horse inventories, and a report on new fan and owner development initiatives.

A video replay of the Round Table Conference will be available Sunday afternoon and an official transcript of the proceedings will be available on The Jockey Club website the following day.

The Jockey Club Round Table Conference was first held on July 1, 1953, in The Jockey Club office in New York City. The following year, it was moved to Saratoga Springs, N.Y., where it has been held every August since.

Transcripts of every Round Table Conference are available in the “Resources” section of The Jockey Club website.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Jockey Club Tour on FOX Returns Sunday

The Jockey Club Tour on FOX returns to historic Saratoga Race Course this Sunday to showcase the nation’s top 2-year-old colts and fillies with coverage of the 109th running of the Toyota Saratoga Special Stakes and the 98th running of the Adirondack Stakes.

The show will air from 5:00 - 6:30 p.m. EDT on FOX Sports 1, FOX Deportes, and FOX Sports Go, and on-air duties will once again be handled by Greg Wolf, Richard Migliore, Andy Serling, Alyssa Ali, and Simon Bray.

Both of the Grade II events carry a purse of $200,000 and will be run at 6 ½ furlongs on the dirt. Throughout its storied history, the Saratoga Special has been won by champions such as Favorite Trick, Dehere, and Chief’s Crown. Among the champion fillies who have won the Adirondack are My Miss Aurelia and Folklore.

The telecast will look back at the great 2-year-olds that have run at Saratoga through the years and look ahead with a feature about a group of young bloggers from Boston visiting Saratoga for the first time. The show will also include a feature on young female jockey Taylor Rice as well as provide an insider’s look at Saratoga’s unique history as a sporting venue with Sean Clancy, publisher of The Saratoga Special.

“Both the Saratoga Special Stakes and the Adirondack Stakes provide fans with an early look at horses on their way to greater glory and attention as 3-year-olds, and it’s exciting to have two top races like this packed into one telecast from Saratoga,” said Jason Wilson, president, TJC Media Ventures.

The show will include a recap of the inductions at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame on Friday, August 8, and feature another installment of “Saratoga Family Traditions.” In addition, the winner of the Ultimate 48 contest featuring a trip for four to the Travers Stakes in Saratoga (New York) on August 23 and the TVG Pacific Classic in Del Mar (California) on August 24 will be announced.

In conjunction with the broadcast, Racing 101’s Joe Kristufek will be hosting a live fan TweetUP beginning at 2 p.m. ET.  Fans are encouraged to join the discussion at the handle @ABRLive using the hashtag #TJCTour.
 
About FOX Sports 1
FOX Sports 1 is America’s new national multi-sport channel that launched on August 17 in approximately 90 million homes and boasts nearly 5,000 hours of live event, news and original programming annually. The channel has several pillar sports: college basketball and football, MLB (in 2014), NASCAR, NFL (ancillary programs), international soccer, UFC and Golden Boy boxing, and adds USGA events, including the U.S. Open, and FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2015. FOX SPORTS LIVE is FOX Sports 1’s flagship 24/7 news, opinion and highlights program, providing around the clock coverage through regularly scheduled programs, hourly updates and an information rich ticker. For more information, visit msn.foxsports.com/foxsports1.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

TCA and Retired Racehorse Project Team Up to Present a Thoroughbred Marketplace at Pimlico

Thoroughbred Charities of America (TCA) and Retired Racehorse Project (RRP) have teamed up to create the TCA Thoroughbred Marketplace on October 4 and 5 at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. The event is built into the RRP’s second annual Thoroughbred Makeover, a national gathering of the farms, organizations and individuals who transition racehorses into second careers. The weekend includes educational seminars, demonstrations and the America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred Contest.

“The bridges to second careers for these horses include nonprofit placement organizations, professional trainers, amateur trainers, and direct sales from racing owners and breeders,” says RRP founder Steuart Pittman. “This Marketplace invites participation from all of these and will attract a large pool of horse shoppers. If it succeeds we have created a model worth replicating.”

Each horse will be listed in an online and printed catalogue with video links and photographs. Upon arrival at Pimlico they will be observed by a veterinarian whose notes will be posted online for potential buyers and adopters to consider. Blemishes, body condition score, and lameness will be noted. Educational materials will also be available to educate buyers and adopters about the relevance of various injuries and blemishes.

“We are proud to support the efforts of the Retired Racehorse Project and assist in the rehoming of former racehorses via the TCA Thoroughbred Marketplace,” said TCA president Dan Rosenberg.

Rosenberg continued, “effective marketing of these horses must include some transparency about their condition. The more information we provide up front, the more shoppers and adopters we will attract. We believe that it is a good thing to reward racing owners financially for retiring their horses sound. The market value of a sound Thoroughbred ex-racehorse has declined, but by increasing demand and raising that value we offer owners an alternative to running at the lowest claiming prices.”

Each horse will appear on Saturday in the main arena on the track to demonstrate either its skills or potential. None will be auctioned, and neither TCA, RRP, nor Maryland Jockey Club will be a party to any transactions that take place privately during or after the event.

“Retired Racehorse Project is humbled by the support of Thoroughbred Charities of America for this event,” said Steuart Pittman. “The TCA board is like a Who’s Who of horse racing and its enthusiastic support for this event tells us that we are on the right track. We also owe a major thanks to Maryland Jockey Club for donating the use of the facility and providing major staff and marketing support.”

“I attended this event last year and reported back to our board that this was possibly the most effective work being done to facilitate placement of Thoroughbreds in second careers,” said Dan Rosenberg. “We are very excited about this year’s Makeover.”

Interested sellers or buyers can find information about participation in the TCA Thoroughbred Marketplace and the Thoroughbred Makeover at RetiredRacehorseProject.org.

Formed in 1990, TCA’s mission is to provide a better life for Thoroughbreds, both during and after their racing careers by supporting retirement, rescue and research and by helping the people who work with them. TCA raises money for distribution to charitable organizations that work to uphold its mission and has granted over $20 million to more than 200 Thoroughbred-related charities. From 2000-2013, more than 95% of TCA’s expenditures were allocated to program services including direct grants.  Donations to TCA are always accepted and can be made as direct donations or as donations in lieu of flowers, birthday gifts or other occasions. TCA’s largest annual fundraiser is a Stallion Season Auction held each January. For more information please visit www.tca.org. TCA is the charitable arm of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA).                                      

The Retired Racehorse Project (RRP) works to facilitate placement of Thoroughbred ex-racehorses in second careers by increasing demand for them in the marketplace and inspiring an army of equestrians to provide the training that secures their futures. RRP offers online directories, educational resources, and public events. Its popular Thoroughbred Makeover and National Symposium at Pimlico last fall will be expanded on the first weekend of October this year and include a TCA Thoroughbred Marketplace and America's Most Wanted Thoroughbred Contest.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

First Annual PDJF Awareness Day Slated for July 26

Over 30 Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racetracks throughout the U.S. have been invited to participate in the first annual Permanently Disabled Jockeys’ Fund (PDJF) Day Across America.  Racetracks, fans, jockeys, and industry leaders are being asked to unite in a show of support for the PDJF and its mission on Saturday, July 26.

The day of awareness-building and fundraising with the theme “Taking The Reins” is to become an annual event. Working with their local jockey colony, racetracks will promote the PDJF in fan-friendly ways that may include autograph sessions, photo opportunities, video spots, and much more.

“We have contacted each racetrack that will be running on July 26th and have had a positive response that will raise funds for, and awareness of, the PDJF,” said Thoroughbred Racing Associations President Scott Wells. “Our goal is to educate our sport’s fans that the PDJF is a charity that must be sustained for the welfare of disabled riders and their families.”

“Naturally we are also hopeful that tracks continue to engage their patrons on behalf of the PDJF throughout their race meets,” Wells added. Racetracks are welcome to use PDJF-provided signage and marketing ideas and are encouraged to draw up some of their own.

“PDJF is not just an industry acronym or letters on a ball cap,” said Hall of Fame rider John Velazquez, Chairman of Jockeys’ Guild and PDJF Board member. “This organization is dedicated to improving the lives and welfare of the men and women who face lifelong challenges due to their disabilities. They can no longer compete or provide adequately for their families. PDJF Day Across America is an opportunity to educate our fans about the PDJF and emphasize the importance of raising funds.”

The PDJF is a 501(c)(3) charity that provides financial assistance to former jockeys who have suffered catastrophic on-track injuries. Founded in 2006, PDJF has disbursed more than $5 million to permanently disabled jockeys, most of whom have sustained paralysis or brain injuries. The fund is a cooperative effort among race tracks, jockeys, horsemen, and enthusiasts.

For more information, go to www.pdjf.org.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Dates Announced and Registration Open for RTIP Symposium

University of Arizona’s Race Track Industry Program today announced that registration is open for the 41st annual Global Symposium on Racing & Gaming to be held December 8-11, 2014, at the Westin La Paloma Resort in Tucson, Arizona. Each year, Symposium panelists address the cutting-edge issues facing the racing industry.

Events in 2014 include the biennial Global Simulcast Marketplace; the one place where representatives of organizations from around the globe can break down the barriers of time and distance to meet in one place, at one time, to buy and sell their racing product.

Visit the conference website www.ua-rtip.org/symposium to register online or to download a registration form. Information on sponsorship of conference events and commercial exhibit/vendor opportunities – including both the main floor exhibit area and private meeting room space – is also found there.

Become a “Friend” of the Race Track Industry Program by supporting the RTIP's 2014 Fundraising Campaign – A donation of $500 before Nov. 14, 2014 qualifies you for free general registration (regularly $550) for the 2014 conference.

Donations at a higher level will qualify for additional free registrations for each $500 increment donated.

How to take advantage of this offer:

1. Become a “Friend of the RTIP” by donating $500 before Nov. 14, 2014. Download form at: ua-rtip.org/news/rtip_fundraising

2. Once you have made your donation, contact Betty Prewitt at (520) 621-5660 or bprewitt@ag.arizona.edu to let her know you’d like to attend the conference and she’ll take care of the registration.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit Available via Live Video Stream

The fifth Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit, scheduled to be held on Tuesday, July 8, and Wednesday, July 9, will be streamed live in its entirety at grayson-jockeyclub.org/WelfareSafety/default.asp. (A link to the live stream will be available at jockeyclub.com.) The summit, underwritten and organized by The Jockey Club and Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation, is being hosted by the Keeneland Association in the Keeneland Sales Pavilion in Lexington, Kentucky.

The summit is scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m. Eastern on Tuesday with the last presentation scheduled to start at 3:15 p.m. The program on Wednesday will also begin at 9:00 a.m., and the last presentation is scheduled to start at 2:15 p.m. It is free and open to the public.

The two-day summit will feature participation from industry leaders including trainer Todd Pletcher, surgeon Dr. Larry Bramlage, and owner Bill Casner. Topics include racetrack surface technologies, the status of the modern Thoroughbred, and an update on the National Uniform Medication Program.

The complete agenda for the summit is available at grayson-jockeyclub.org/WelfareSafety/default.asp.

Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation is traditionally the nation’s leading source of private funding for equine medical research that benefits all breeds of horses. Since 1983, the foundation has provided more than $20.9 million to fund 310 projects at 41 universities in North America and overseas. Additional information about the foundation and the summit is available at grayson-jockeyclub.org.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Chaplain Tom LaPointe is a True Inspiration on Gulfstream Park Backstretch

Chaplain Tom LaPointe (in white shirt) helps out in a variety of ways on the backside, including organizing trips to a local water park for workers and their families.
When the main track closed at Gulfstream Park one recent morning for a renovation break, a faded old van began to slowly snake its way through the backstretch.

At every other row of barns, the van would stop and Chaplain Tom LaPointe would swing open the back and side doors to reveal boxes of sandwiches, Manatee River tomatoes, Del Monte bananas, burritos and gallons of milk.

“Who wants a sandwich?” asked the affable LaPointe while handing shopping bags to grooms and hotwalkers streaming out of the nearby barns.

“Hey, Tom, you have a pizza with any pepperoni?” someone shouted.

“For you anything,” LaPointe said laughing. “Come on, take a bag.”

Since the late 1980s, Chaplain Tom LaPointe has been a constant on racetracks in Florida. Whether helping those with substance abuse problems, holding bible study classes, funding a weekly medical clinic each winter, or organizing fishing trips, soccer leagues or barbeques, LaPointe has been ready at a moment’s notice to pitch in and help.

“I love it,” LaPointe said as he handed out bags with food and small-talked with backstretch workers. “I love giving back to these guys. It’s really amazing how I got here. I was asked to share my progression of addiction and recovery with a group of teenagers 30 years ago and it slowly turned into this.”

Gulfstream Park President Tim Ritvo said LaPointe has been a great help to the backstretch workers and their families.

“Tom has been a source of inspiration for many people,” Ritvo said. “People at Gulfstream and Palm Meadows know they can count on him to inspire and help them during good times and bad. He’s always available, always organizing events and meetings, and he’s out there almost every morning giving back to the Thoroughbred community.”

Phil Combest, president of the Florida Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (FHBPA), said; “I can’t say enough about Chaplain Tom and the job he does for our backside workers. The guy is absolutely amazing, as are his assistants. Any problem a groom, hotwalker or exercise rider has, his or her first thought is, ‘I’ll go see Chaplain Tom.’ He makes sure everyone has medical care and enough to eat. He provides solace in bad times and fishing trips or picnics in good times. We are really lucky to have this guy on our team.”

Originally from the Bronx, LaPointe, a Christian and a recovering alcoholic since 1980, opened a youth center in South Florida in 1986 and began narcotics and alcoholics anonymous meetings.

“I was working a lot with kids who were high-risk and a guy I knew said, ‘Tom, you have to relax. You’ve got to come for a cup of coffee one morning.’ I met him one morning and he told me he had to make a stop before we got coffee. It turned out he owned a few horses and the stop was at the track,” LaPointe recalled.

“I couldn’t believe how many people worked back here, and some of the guys were a bit raggedy. I told my friend to call me anytime he went. I slowly began to get to know some people, but I wasn’t an insider. I had long hair and I think the guys on the backstretch thought I was a narc and the owners thought I was selling drugs.

“I was making some headway when my friend asked me to help his trainer’s wife, who had a habit. I got her into rehab and suddenly I had credibility.”

After running as many as eight halfway houses and helping backstretch workers at Calder, LaPointe met Jim Ryan of Ryehill Farm. “He asked me why I was doing everything that I was,” LaPointe recalled. “I said, ‘Someone reached out to me at a time I needed it and I thought it would be great to help others in the same spot.’ ”

Ryan not only helped support LaPointe’s programs but also asked him to help backstretch workers at Gulfstream. He’s been a fixture ever since.

LaPointe, who also runs a small, non-denominational church near Gulfstream, organizes a mobile medical clinic to visit Gulfstream each week during the winter as well as a barbeque where dozens of bicycles, appliances and clothes are given out. This summer, LaPointe organized a fishing trip and another barbeque. He also has alcoholics anonymous meetings held in Spanish.

“Things have gotten a lot better on the backstretch, and what Mr. (Frank) Stronach did here at Gulfstream, building these apartments for the backstretch workers, well…it’s like night and day compared to what it was,” LaPointe said. “But I want to give back, help the people I can. I love coming here and I love the people here.”

LaPointe pulls up to another barn and swings the doors of the van open. “You like tomatoes? No. What about bananas. Take some bananas and a sandwich and, please, take some milk….”

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Elite Program Announces Mid-Summer Educational Classes in Louisiana and Oklahoma

Dr. C. Reid McLellan, Executive Director of The Elite Program, Inc. and senior instructor of the nationally recognized Groom Elite certification program announced the following mid-summer class schedule.

July 28 –August 1 Equine Behavior and Care clinic for Teachers, Trainers, Owners and Students at Florida Parishes Campus of Northshore Technical Community College in Greensburg, Louisiana

Clinic will be an intensive four days of continuing education discussing principles of horse care and the teaching of those principles. Using the Groom Elite format of lecture and hands on learning, Dr. McLellan will demonstrate methods of teaching Horse Behavior and how it relates to handling, grooming and riding horses. Participants will see different teaching aids and methods available such as anatomical models and PowerPoint slide shows. Discussion will include how to make your PowerPoint slide show more effective. Horse owners and students interested in learning more about their horses will benefit from the hands on experience and opportunity to work with equine trainers & instructors. Regularly $599, special summer tuition of $499 if registered by July 25. ($399 for students).

August 12-14 –Trainers Exam Prep Class at Remington Park, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

A popular class for individuals considering taking a state licensing exam to become a racehorse assistant or trainer. Owners and horseplayers are invited to take the class (provided space is available) to learn more about the rules of racing under which racing is governed in most states. Space is limited to 15. Tuition prior to August 5th-$299; Tuition after August 5th-$349.

August 18-20 –Philosophy & Methods of Training Racehorses at Remington Park, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

A recent addition to The Elite Program curriculum, this class was requested by trainers and owners interested in learning about latest information regarding conditioning horses and running a racing stable business. Using an open discussion format, topics include selecting a racehorse, conditioning young horses, owner-trainer interaction and daily training activities. Current topics in racing including proper use of therapeutic medications, options for Lasix-free racing and post racing responsibilities are included in this 2 and ½ day class. Tuition until August 14 -$249.00 –Tuition after August 14 -$299.

Individuals wishing to attend both classes at Remington Park can save $150 off the “door” tuition by paying $499 by August 4th.

Detailed program outlines, information and online registration for each of these three classes is available at www.purplepowerracing.com or by calling Dr. McLellan at 859-321-4377.

America's Most Wanted Thoroughbred Contest Launched by Retired Racehorse Project

The Retired Racehorse Project (RRP) announced today a lineup of ten Thoroughbred ex-racehorses being trained in ten equestrian disciplines by ten prominent trainers for a purse of $10,000. The teams make up America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred Contest, an event designed to educate the public about the versatility and trainability of Thoroughbreds that have raced.

Retired Racehorse Project’s web site features pages for each horse where training updates and videos will be posted. RRP’s online followers will be asked for commentary and opinion as the horses prepare for appearances on October 4-5 at the Thoroughbred Makeover: a Marketplace and National Symposium at Pimlico Racecourse in Baltimore. The winners will be determined by popular vote and the input of celebrity judges.

“This is the fourth competition that RRP has organized to prove to the public that Thoroughbreds off the track are the most trainable, generous, and talented four-legged animals on the planet,” said RRP’s founder Steuart Pittman. “The trainers this time are some of the best in their disciplines and the past racing connections of the horses are engaged. Everyone is in it for the horses and the result will be a larger and better educated market of buyers and adopters.”

“As a racing owner nothing is more important to me than educating equestrians who might someday own and care for one of these horses,” said Bourbon Lane Stables partner and RRP vice president Carolyn Karlson. “These ten horses and trainers will inspire us and they will inspire the public.”

The Thoroughbred Makeover at Pimlico also includes this year the TCA Thoroughbred Marketplace (made possible by a grant from Thoroughbred Charities of America), an expanded schedule of educational seminars, special demonstrations, and a sponsor fair.

More information may be found at this link.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Hazel Park Raceway becomes first converted racetrack in Michigan

Chrissy and George Kutlenios, president of the Michigan HBPA, stand with their winning Thoroughbred race horse, Wall Cloud. Jockey Angel Ortega Stanley with groom (holding the horse) Santos Perez. Photo by Sharon Greene
By Sharon Greene, The Oakland Press

Thoroughbred horse racing has returned to Oakland County.

Hazel Park Raceway will be the first converted race track in Michigan with new surfaces, new railings, rehabilitated barns, improved facilities and infrastructure.

Horses began moving into the stalls and exercise areas this past Monday, June 16. The horses will begin their race meet on Friday and Saturday nights starting June 27 and June 28 with a Grand Reintroduction planned for Friday, July 4. Every Friday and Saturday evening (16 weekends) until Oct. 11 will have a 7:30 p.m. post time. “I began working and negotiating with all three racetracks in southeast Michigan in 2010,” explained George Kutlenios, president of the Michigan Horsemen’s Protective and Benevolent Association (Michigan HBPA) for two years and board member for five. “After this long-sought agreement was in place in January of 2014, the Michigan Gaming Control Board issued executive orders that allow for Thoroughbred racing to return to the Metropolitan Detroit Area.”

Kutlenios and his wife, Chrissy, are very familiar with operating a business and they understand the cycle of economics in Oakland County as they are successful owners of the Holly Hotel. They live on a 60 acre horse farm in Holly where they have raised race horses and have also kept retired racehorses for the past 12 years.

“The MiHBPA organizes each racing meet, coordinates the availability of Thoroughbred horses to race at Michigan race tracks and generally oversees each race meet every year,” added Kutlenios. “We also provide benevolent services to our members like health and dental care.”

Kutlenios believes that it doesn’t matter if a horseman has one horse or a stable of horses, he sees the Michigan Horsemen’s Protective and Benevolent Association as being the voice of thoroughbred owners, breeders and trainers that race in Michigan and throughout the country.

“We are horsemen helping horsemen,” he said.

To read the complete article from The Oakland Press, click here. For more information about the Michigan HBPA, go to www.mihbpa.com.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Agenda Set for Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit V

The Jockey Club and Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation today announced the agenda for the fifth Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit, to be held on Tuesday, July 8, and Wednesday, July 9, 2014, and hosted by Keeneland Association in the Keeneland Sales Pavilion.

Debuting in 2006, this two-day, semi-annual workshop brings together a wide range of professionals and stakeholders in the industry to discuss relevant equine safety issues. It is open to the public and will be streamed live on jockeyclub.com and grayson-jockeyclub.org.

The topics to be addressed include racetrack surface technologies, the status of the modern Thoroughbred, the National Uniform Medication Program, advanced horsemanship, the Jockey Injury Database, and how the relationship and interaction among owners, trainers and veterinarians can enhance the wellbeing of Thoroughbreds.

“Keeneland is proud to be hosting the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit for the fifth consecutive time,” said Keeneland President and CEO Bill Thomason. “This event has made significant strides toward widespread change for horse health and safety in just a few short years.”

“The Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit has been influential in implementing positive changes for the racing industry,” said Edward L. Bowen. “The past four summits have resulted in the development of such programs as the Equine Injury Database, Jockey Injury Database, and the Racing Surfaces Testing Laboratory, and we look forward to seeing what new initiatives may come from this gathering.”

Tuesday’s agenda will feature talks from industry leaders including Dr. Lisa Hanelt, Finger Lakes examining veterinarian; Steve Koch, vice president of Thoroughbred racing, Woodbine Entertainment Group; Dr. Jennifer Durenberger, director of racing, Massachusetts Gaming Commission; Dr. Mary Scollay, equine medical director, Kentucky Horse Racing Commission; Mike Ziegler, executive director, NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance; Dr. Dionne Benson, executive director and chief operating officer, Racing Medication and Testing Consortium; Edward L. Bowen, president, Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation; Dr. Rick Arthur, equine medical director, California Horse Racing Board; Dr. Rick Sams, director, HFL Sport Science; and Dr. Larry Bramlage, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACVS.

Tuesday will also include an appearance by leading trainer Todd Pletcher, who will be participating via video connection.

On Wednesday, the group of industry leaders speaking will include Dr. Scott Palmer, the new equine medical director of the New York State Gaming Commission; Dr. Heather Knych, UC-Davis assistant professor of Clinical Molecular Biosciences; Dr. James N. MacLeod from the University of Kentucky Gluck Equine Research Center Dept. of Veterinary Sciences; Dr. Wayne McIlwraith, Colorado State distinguished professor; Dr. Carl Mattacola, associate professor and division director of Athletic Training, University of Kentucky; Dr. Mick Peterson, executive director, Racing Surfaces Testing Laboratory, and professor, University of Maine; Glen Kozak, New York Racing Association vice president of Facilities & Racing Surfaces; and Dixie Hayes, academic coordinator and trainer, North American Racing Academy.

Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation is traditionally the nation’s leading source of private funding for equine medical research that benefits all breeds of horses. Since 1983, the foundation has provided more than $20.9 million to fund 310 projects at 41 universities in North America and overseas. Additional information about the foundation and the summit is available at grayson-jockeyclub.org.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Thoroughbred Charities of America Awards More than $512,000 in Grants

Thoroughbred Charities of America (TCA) announced today grants totaling $512,105 have been awarded to 74 Thoroughbred industry-related non-profits that work to uphold TCA’s mission.

TCA distributes grants to several categories of Thoroughbred industry-related nonprofits including rescue, rehabilitation and adoption organizations; backstretch and farm employee programs; therapeutic riding programs; and research organizations. Grant applications for the 2015 grant cycle will be available on www.tca.org in early January.

“We are very pleased to announce our 2014 grants,” said TCA president Dan Rosenberg. “These grants are only possible due to the generosity of our donors; without their support these grants would not be possible. We are committed to being a good steward of any and all donations made to TCA and, accordingly, employ an extensive application and review process. Our 2014 grantees are working hard to uphold our mission and we are proud to support them.”

TCA has granted over $20 million to more than 200 Thoroughbred-related charities since its inception in 1990. TCA grants funds to organizations that successfully meet the criteria set forth in its annual grant application.

Formed in 1990, TCA’s mission is to provide a better life for Thoroughbreds, both during and after their racing careers, by supporting retirement, rescue and research and by helping the people who work with them. TCA raises money for distribution to charitable organizations that work to uphold its mission. From 2000-2013, more than 95% of TCA’s expenditures were allocated to program services including direct grants. Donations to TCA are always accepted and can be made as direct donations or as donations in lieu of flowers, birthday gifts or other occasions. TCA’s largest annual fundraiser is a Stallion Season Auction held each January. For more information please visit www.tca.org. TCA is the charitable arm of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA).

Thursday, June 5, 2014

The Interactive, Electronic Edition of The Horsemen's Journal Summer 2014 Issue is Now Available

The interactive, electronic version of The Horsemen's Journal's Summer 2014 issue is now available online. It is an enhanced version of our Summer 2014 issue, which is currently being mailed. To view it, either click here or click on the flipping magazine icon above.
Features in the issue include:
  • Balancing Act - Jockeys not only face danger every day on the track, but also challenges on the homefront
  • To Salix or Not to Salix - Examining the question after the release of the PETA videos
  • Nutrition for Young Racehorses - Proper feeding of yearlings and 2-year-olds can help lead you to the winner’s circle 
  • A Cautionary Tale: PETA and Federal Investigation - Simple steps to protect your business from immigration and labor issues
Much more than a PDF, the interactive electronic edition of The Horsemen's Journal includes the ability to save, print, email, or share content on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Please enjoy this exciting offering from the National HBPA and share it with anyone you think might enjoy it.

All hyperlinks/URLs and email addresses in the electronic edition are working, clickable links. So be sure to click on some of them - especially those in the advertisements to get more information on the great products and services being offered by the companies supporting your horsemen's organization.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Equibase Introduces Push Notifications, Other Enhancements for Virtual Stable

Equibase Company LLC, the Thoroughbred industry’s official database for racing information, has enhanced its free Virtual Stable service to include push notifications for its Today’s Racing app, Twitter delivery and email calendar functionality, it was announced by Equibase Company President and COO Hank Zeitlin.

“People use smartphones for virtually everything these days and now Virtual Stable users can get reminders sent to their phone whenever one of their horses runs,” said Zeitlin. “And, for those who love to play big carryovers they can now follow @TopCarryovers to get daily tweets.”

Virtual Stable users can now opt to have entry and result notifications “pushed” to their smartphone within the Today’s Racing app. Email calendar functionality has been added, so people who use iCalendar, Outlook, Gmail, etc., to remember their activities can also receive their Virtual Stable horse notifications in the same manner.

Twitter users can now follow daily tweets for top carryovers and graded stakes entries and results from Virtual Stable. Each tweet will include a link to the full notification. Twitter users will also be able to follow daily tweets for the leading contenders on the Road to the Breeders’ Cup World Championships when it begins in early July.

The Equibase Virtual Stable is a free service that notifies users of racing activity that is important to them. In addition to horse notifications, Virtual Stable also enables users to follow individual jockeys, trainers and tracks, Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse stakes races, the leading contenders on the Road to the Triple Crown and Breeders’ Cup World Championships, and large carryover pools.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

National HBPA, Kentucky HBPA Help Trainer Affected by Deadly Fire

The National HBPA Foundation, along with the Kentucky HBPA, presented trainer Gerry Carwood with a check for $7,000 in emergency assistance aid in the paddock at Keeneland Race Course on May 22. On May 9, eight Thoroughbreds were killed when a barn leased by Carwood and located across the street from Keeneland’s barn area was destroyed by a fire.

Carwood, a native of Ireland, previously worked for trainers Eddie Kenneally and Jeff Thornberry as an assistant trainer before going out on his own about four years ago. He signed his KHBPA membership card in 2010, his first year as a trainer.

“I talked with Jeff Thornbury, and Keeneland’s Chaplain, Bobby Aldridge, and both had high praise for Gerry, his work ethic and his love for his horses,” said Marty Maline, executive director of the KHBPA. “In fact, Gerry, who lives in a house next to the barn, nearly lost his own life rushing into the fire. He saved two horses, just before the roof collapsed.

“I talked with Gerry and expressed the condolences of the KHBPA for his tragic loss,” continued Maline, who added that Carwood also lost all of his tack and equipment in the fire.

Some of the horses, who Carwood described as like family to him, were insured by clients and others were not. Carwood did not own any of the horses, but the funds will help him buy new equipment and get back to training.

“The HBPA, both at the national and state level, has always been about horsemen helping horsemen, and this is a great example of that,” said Phil Hanrahan, CEO of the National HBPA. “We wish Gerry the best after this tragic event.”

Other horsemen also pitched in to help Carwood with a benefit at McCarthy’s Irish Bar in downtown Lexington.

The National HBPA Foundation (NHBPAF), a tax-exempt Sec. 501 (c)(3) fund, was developed as a safety net for horsemen when other forms of assistance are unavailable or have been exhausted after disaster strikes.
(From left) Marty Maline, executive director of the Kentucky HBPA; trainer Gerry Carwood; and Phil Hanrahan, CEO of the National HBPA (Photo by Laura Plato, NHBPA)

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

"Behind the Gate" Movie to be Released June 12

From National HBPA President Robin Richards:

A few weeks ago, while perusing the Internet, I came across a comment about a new film about racing. Curious, I Googled it and watched the trailer. It is called “Behind the Gate.” A link to it is now on our website and also posted below. Please, I encourage you to watch it, put it on your affiliate websites (they will pay you a commission) and support the efforts of two frustrated racehorse owners! Mark Giardino and his wife are California owners and breeders who got tired of all the negative press and the state of racing, and they had the wherewithal to do something about it. They have addressed two dilemmas in their documentary: how to introduce racing to a total neophyte and how to acknowledge and question what has gone wrong and our tendency to “eat our own” within the industry. They have plans for four more films. I hope we can support them. Let this be the first of many ways in which we can come together to change the image of racing. This is a great PR opportunity.


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Behind The Gate

Mark Giardino and Daryle Ann Lindley Giardino take you on a tour of the Sport of Kings in a way no other film ever has. Starring Joe Pesci, Oscar De La Hoya, Bob Baffert, Ron McAnally, Doug O’Neill and many other stars of racing.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Benard Chatters Elected as President of Louisiana HBPA

Benard Chatters was elected President of the Louisiana Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association in the runoff election conducted April 28, 2014. The Presidential term is for three years. Benard is a Louisiana native and has owned and trained horses for more than 20 years. He is committed to serving with honesty and integrity and looks forward to working on behalf of all Louisiana HBPA members.

For more information, go to www.lahbpa.org.

Online Registration Now Available for National HBPA Summer Convention in OKC

The National HBPA’s Summer Convention is set for August 14-17 in Oklahoma City, and online registration is now available. Hosted by the Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma (TRAO), the convention will include a night at Remington Park for the opening of the track’s Thoroughbred meet. The host hotel is the historic Skirvin Hilton in downtown Oklahoma City, which was built in 1911 and is the city’s oldest and most acclaimed hotel. A schedule of events is listed below, and more information about hotel rates, registration and transportation is available by clicking here.

Schedule of Events:

Thursday, 8/14 – Registration & Welcome Cocktail Reception
HBPA Registration Desk Open 2:00 – 6:00 PM
5:30 – 6:30 – Arrival Cocktail Party
Dress Code: Casual
Dinner On Your Own

Friday, 8/15 – Meetings & Evening at Racetrack
HBPA Registration Desk Open 8:30 – 5:00
Meetings All Day
Group transportation via bus from hotel to racetrack
Dinner at Remington Park, sponsored by Remington Park
First Post is at 7 PM
Dress Code: Business Casual (no shorts or flip flops; Men please wear a collared shirt)

Saturday, 8/16 – Meetings
HBPA Registration Desk Open 9:00 – 5:00
Meetings All Day
Dinner On Your Own

Sunday, 8/17 – AM Meeting, End of Function
NHBPA Full Board of Directors Meeting, 8 AM start