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Thursday, July 4, 2019

National HBPA and THA: There must be a fair process that gives horsemen right to confront allegations of wrongdoing

Due process is a fundamental and accepted constitutional right in our country. In a government sanctioned and regulated industry, it is required. Every person in our industry who holds a license to participate is given a right to due process when their livelihood is threatened. We are an industry that operates according to rules and regulations, standards are clear, violations have consequences and we are transparent.

The situation which occurred recently at Santa Anita from the Stronach Group regarding Jerry Hollendorfer has clearly sidestepped those rights and exemplifies our concerns. By this action, every licensee in racing is on notice of potential arbitrary career-ending actions by racetracks without rules, standards, the right to due process, fundamental fairness and accountability.

As horsemen, we know that our primary responsibility is the health, welfare and safety of the horse, the integrity of our sport, and the fairness of competition. There is no place in our sport for individuals who cannot accept this commitment. In this regard, racetracks, regulators and horsemen must constantly work together to find solutions to the challenges we face, with honest discussion and transparent decision-making. When decisions are made behind closed doors and without open communication, we create conflict and turmoil at a time when we need to be collectively focused on the betterment of horse racing.

The HBPA and THA are in lockstep on this issue. We do not intend to stand idly by and let reputations be destroyed, and careers ruined. There must be a fair process that gives our horsemen a right to confront allegations of wrongdoing. In those states where horsemen are not accorded due process by racetracks, we will seek agreements to protect their rights or statutory protections. Our intent is to ensure a fair process. The time we take to do what is right and fair will be an invaluable investment in our industry.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

The Interactive, Electronic Edition of The Horsemen’s Journal Summer 2019 Issue is Now Available

The interactive, electronic version of The Horsemen’s Journal’s Summer 2019 issue is now available online. It is an enhanced version of the printed magazine, which is currently being mailed. To view it, click here.

Features in the issue include:

A True Feel-Good Story for Racing
The racing community has stepped up to embrace a young fan’s love of the racetrack

Celebrating the Majesty of Majestic Prince
Five decades ago, a record-priced yearling almost made racing history

Long, Hot Summer
Some equine diseases are associated with hot weather, insects and wildlife

The Benefits of Lasix for Exercise-Induced Pulmonary Hemorrhage
50 years of science and clinical experience

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.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Nominations now open for the fourth annual Thoroughbred Industry Employee Awards

Nominations for the Thoroughbred Industry Employee Awards open on Tuesday, May 21, and will close on Monday, July 15. The TIEAs were held in America for the first time in 2016.

Godolphin, the global racing stable founded by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is the principal sponsor of the awards in association with The Jockey Club, the National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protection Association (NHBPA), the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA) and the Breeders’ Cup. Godolphin also sponsors the equivalent Stud and Stable Staff Awards in Ireland, Australia, Britain and France.

A new awards category is being added in 2019 in America – the Administrative Award. Said Dan Pride, COO of Godolphin in America, “As we all know, it really does take a village to care for our equine athletes whether it’s on a racetrack, on a farm, at a sales company, or at a feed supplier. Our administrative colleagues do an incredible job covering a wide array of functions and duties to keep these beautiful animals performing at their best and we felt it to be very important that we honor and reward this group of people as well.”

With the addition of the Administrative Award, a total of seven categories will be presented this year and will carry total prize money of $128,000. The awards will be held on Wednesday, October 11, at Keeneland Racecourse. The Keeneland Association hosted the event the first two years and it returns to the Lexington, Kentucky, oval after being held during Breeders’ Cup Championship Week last year with Churchill Downs as the host.

Dan Metzger, President of TOBA, added, “These awards continue to grow and it couldn’t be done without the help of a very large and committed group of individuals within the industry. On behalf of our partners, a special thanks to the Keeneland Association for their unwavering support, as well as our industry media partners – BloodHorse Publications, the Daily Racing Form, the Paulick Report, Thoroughbred Daily News, TVG and NBC Sports. ”

For more information and to nominate online, please go to

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Official Testing Results Show Substantial Rule Compliance in Racing, Claims Of Rampant Pain Masking Not Substantiated

The 2018 Anti-Doping and Drug Testing Program conducted by U.S. racing regulatory bodies found continued substantial compliance with racing’s medication and anti-doping rules and little support for claims that the use of drugs to mask pain when horses race is rampant.

As it does each year, the Association of Racing Commissioners International (ARCI) released a summary of the collective results of the individual state programs conducted in 2018.

In 2018, horses competing in 95,618 individual races were tested, 43,574 flat races (Quarter Horse and Thoroughbred combined) and 52,044 Standardbred races. This represents a reduction from the previous year when horses from 98,883 races were tested.

On average 3.2 horses were tested in each flat race and 2.26 horses tested in each Standardbred contest.

In 2018, there were 1,561 violations of the medication rules out of 258,920 samples tested, meaning that 99.4% of all tests found the horse to be compliant with the rules. It also means that the facts do not support claims that a substantial number of horses are racing under the influence of pain masking medications as all testing labs routinely screen for the presence of such drugs. Such instances do occasionally occur and are reflected in the violations that are found and prosecuted.

The ARCI has described violations involving Class 1 or Class 2 substances as instances of “doping.” Violations involving substances of a lesser class often involve overages of medications deemed therapeutic or authorized by U.S. federal law for veterinary use.

There was a dramatic drop in doping instances from 2017 to 2018. In 2017, 11% of all violations found were for Class 1 or 2 substances. In 2018, that number dropped to 6.8% of all violations. In 2018, there were 107 findings out of 258,920 samples tested for these substances deemed to have the greatest effect on performance, or 0.04% of all samples tested. In 2017, there were 169 findings out of 293,704 samples, or 0.06% of those tested.

Violations involving Class 3 substances were 26.2% of all adverse analytical findings in 2018, a slight increase over the 24.5% detected in 2017. There were 409 Class 3 AAF’s in 2018 – 0.16% of all tested – compared to 376 in 2017 – 0.13% tested.

Violations involving substances deemed least likely to affect performance – Class 4 and 5 substances – accounted for 66.9% of the adverse analytical findings in 2018, slightly up from the 64.5% of AAF’s in 2017.

Clear Rate
In 2018, 99.4% of all samples tested were determined to be clear of any substance that would trigger an adverse analytical finding (AAF). In 2017, the clear rate for all US horse racing was 99.5%.

For Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse races, the clear rate in 2018 was 99.13% and the rate for Standardbred races that year was 99.71%.

By comparison, the 2017 Annual Report of the US Anti Doping Agency indicates that their clear rate for human sport was 99.12% for Olympic, Paralympic and Global Service Testing. The 2019 World Anti-Doping Agency’s Testing Report shows that their “clear rate” is 98.57%.

“Horse racing and human sport share the same challenges in combating those who cheat. While the overall clear rate is comparable, I do not believe anyone is under the illusion in either human sport or horse racing that we are catching everyone who will attempt to cheat,” said Ed Martin, President of the Association of Racing Commissioners International.

“Industry investments in anti-doping research and a greater emphasis on expanded investigatory staff at the regulatory agencies and racetracks is essential if we are to effectively combat this threat,” he added.

(from ARCI news release)

Thursday, April 18, 2019

National HBPA's Hamelback: Announced initiative to ban Lasix 'should not be seen as safety reform'

As CEO of the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (National HBPA) I -- along with all HBPA members -- am as concerned as any about the recent events in our industry. I firmly believe in having the highest standards of horsemanship. The HBPA is continuously working with industry stakeholders to improve the care, health and safety of our industry's equine and human athletes.

I have no doubt that everyone in horse racing has a shared goal of keeping our human and equine performers safe and healthy. However, I am disturbed and mystified by the announced initiative by the coalition of racetracks to phase out the use of the anti-bleeder medication furosemide in all 2-year-olds racing at their tracks in 2020 and all stakes races in 2021. Many of us in the industry strongly believe that it is reckless to unilaterally suggest a policy change that directly impacts horses' welfare without first consulting veterinary leadership or the horsemen's representatives.

I would hope the industry stakeholders understand the ban on the use of furosemide (commonly known as Lasix) will not prevent horses from suffering catastrophic injuries, and in fact, could cause further harm and should not be seen as a safety reform.

Many of the states affected by this possible ban on Lasix must consider the constitutional implications that will arise. As we find in Kentucky, this edict flies in the face of Attorney General Opinion (OAG 15-017) issued in late 2015 that held a regulation permitting private race tracks to determine whether to hold furosemide-free racing was unconstitutional delegation of the Horse Racing Commission's authority.

Each catastrophic injury faced at the racetrack is devastating to each and every one of us in the industry. But we also know there are many varied and nuanced conditions and circumstances which cause these tragedies. But the research is clear: Lasix is not a factor. Horses will continue to have injuries without race-day administration of Lasix. However, what also will happen is more horses will experience exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhaging (EIPH), which is systemic not only in thoroughbreds but equines in general. Lasix has been proven to be effective and preventing or reducing the severity of EIPH for well over 30 years.

In all racing jurisdictions, pain-killers, stimulants and performance-enhancing medications and drugs are prohibited for racing and therapeutic anti-bleeder medication is the only treatment that can be given to a horse on race day. Horse racing has one of the most stringent post-race drug-testing programs among any profession. Lasix programs are highly effective, highly regulated and transparent. It also should be pointed out that running a horse on Lasix is and always has been voluntary; nothing is forcing an owner or trainer to run their horses on the medication.

Lasix is the only scientifically proven and approved treatment for a horse with EIPH, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) as well as the North American Association of Racetrack Veterinarians (NAARV). Current industry policy endorses the use of this medication on race day because it is in the best interests of the health and welfare of the horse.

The National HBPA, which represents about 30,000 owners and trainers, is and remains committed to being part of the solution. We are committed to reforms emphasizing transparency that will help address misunderstanding and lack of trust by some of the non-racing public. We are prepared to make some concessions in areas in which we disagree. But our first order of business is to make sure the horses themselves are treated with the highest degree of care.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

The Interactive, Electronic Edition of The Horsemen’s Journal Spring 2019 Issue is Now Available

The interactive, electronic version of The Horsemen’s Journal’s Spring 2019 issue is now available online. It is an enhanced version of the printed magazine, which is currently being mailed. To view it, click here.

Features in the issue include:

Finding Ways to Do Things Better
Horsemen get together in Florida to share ideas to improve the industry

A Long Day’s Night
Track superintendents go the extra mile to keep horses and riders safe

How Horse Racing Is Using Digital Media to Grow Fan Engagement
Different than other major sports, horse racing has the opportunity to capitalize on a unique digital and social strategy

Feed, Forage and Bedding: What Is Being Called a Positive?
A multitude of environmental sources can individually result in a low-level concentration of a substance in a post-race test

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.

Horse Racing-Themed Lottery Game Now Available on a Trial Basis in Select Kentucky Cities

The Kentucky Lottery has launched a limited pilot program of the game Win Place Show, the first-ever daily lottery game based on the results of live horse racing.

Players can purchase the $2 Quick Pick tickets at one of the 45 retailers now offering the game on a limited basis. Each ticket lists three numbers with corresponding horse names, along with the designated race time and other key racetrack information. Prizes are paid based on the outcome of the race. Since the tickets are Quick Picks and players can’t select their own numbers, there is no handicapping skill involved. Final prizes are determined after race results are official, and are estimated to range from $10 to $1,800 (depending on field size, amount wagered and other factors).

The game will feature a daily race from one of 21 tracks in 14 states. These tracks stretch from California to Florida, with the first week of the pilot featuring Lexington’s Keeneland Race Course.

“Given Kentucky’s connection to the horse industry, we felt we needed to test this game as to see how players responded,” said Tom Delacenserie, president and CEO of the Kentucky Lottery. “Today we’ve launched limited sales of the game in 45 stores across Louisville, Lexington and Northern Kentucky. At the end of the 90 day trial period, we’ll assess the game’s results to see if it would be viable for a state-wide rollout.”

The Win Place Show game was developed and implemented by Kentucky-based EquiLottery Games.

The Win Place Show mobile app is now available in the App Store and Google Play and allows players to watch races live or via replay through their phones. They can also watch races through any device by visiting The website and mobile app also have a searchable list of the 45 retailers selling the game during this trial period.

"We're thrilled to be working with the Kentucky Lottery on this limited trial of Kentucky's Win Place Show," said EquiLottery Games CEO Brad Cummings. "We look forward to seeing how this game performs for our partners at the Kentucky Lottery as we aim to increase education funding in the state and share the excitement of live horse racing with people all year round.”

(from Kentucky Lottery news release)

Thursday, March 7, 2019

National HBPA Convention: Finding Ways To Do Things Better

Finding ways for horse racing to do things better is the overarching theme of the National HBPA Convention March 12-16 at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort in Clearwater Beach, Fla.

That also is the mission of the new Thoroughbred Idea Foundation, a horse-racing think tank whose representatives form the March 13 keynote panel at the annual convention staged by the National Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association and its affiliates in the United States and Canada. Launched last May, the Thoroughbred Idea Foundation already has issued a trio of white papers on horse racing and legal sports betting, when interference should result in a disqualification and rounding down to the penny in mutuel payoffs.

The Thoroughbred Idea Foundation’s stated goal is “to improve the thoroughbred racing industry for all stakeholders, especially its primary customers - gamblers and owners - through the exchange, curation and advocacy of sound, data-driven ideas, shared with and implemented by the sport’s existing entities.” TIF is funded by individuals and accepts no money from industry organizations.

Panelists are Glen Hill Farm president and think-tank founder Craig Bernick, along with TIF board members Jack Wolf of Starlight Racing and horse owner-breeder Corey Johnsen of Arizona Downs and Kentucky Downs. Moderating the panel will be Justin Nicholson, a TIF board member and co-founder of Equestricon.

“I continue to try to keep the keynote address about the positiveness and what’s working in the industry,” Hamelback said. “I certainly see this panel as that. This group and their board as a whole are very bright individuals who are all vested in the industry. They have a passion to make this industry as successful as possible, not just sit by and be status quo.

“We’re in a time where our industry is poised for growth if people will take heed of the changes that we should and could make…. These are people who want this industry not only to survive but to thrive.”

Other panels and presentations include:
  • “Putting the ‘We’ in Equine Welfare” kicks off the March 13 programming by exploring what animal welfare really means, who decides what is and isn’t good welfare and why the industry must get involved in the debate. The session will be presented by Dr. Jennifer Durenberger, the New York Racing Association’s chief examining veterinarian, an accredited steward, industry consultant and attorney.
“It makes you think about what some of these activists see and things we can do to make it better,” said Hamelback, who has seen Durenberger’s presentation. “It’s dependent on how we treat our equine athlete as to how our industry moves forward, as much as growing owners and handicappers.”
  • “Accessing Our Industry’s Stats Into The Future” will discuss owners asserting their rights to statistical data collected on their horses’ performances, including gaining input on how it is used. The panel comes as Equibase is testing GPS systems to collect race and workout data of horses.
  • Michele Fischer, president of the Darting Star consulting company whose expertise includes wagering systems around the world, will make a presentation about the future of fixed-odds betting at American racetracks, including the positive impact it has had in Australian racing.
  • John Marshall, senior vice president and general manager of Virginia’s revived Colonial Downs, is the guest speaker at the awards luncheon. Among those to be recognized is 2018 Claimer of the Year Persie, the Penn National-based winner of 10 of 17 starts in claiming and starter-allowance races for owner Bush Racing and trainer Lester Stickler.
  • Dr. Steve Vickner, an economist and associate professor in the University of Louisville’s Equine Industry Program in the College of Business and specialist in data analytics, will present factors affecting handle in thoroughbred and standardbred races based on extensive research at Toronto’s Woodbine Racetrack as part of the convention’s March 14 programming.
“That’s the kind of thing we need to know if we’re going to have pertinent industry discussions on how to change things, and what we’re doing already that is a win so we don’t have to focus on that part,” Hamelback said.
  • The public portion of the convention concludes the morning of March 15 with the annual Kent Stirling Memorial Scientific Panel, which will continue to delve into one of the most important topics facing horsemen: the dangers of environmental contamination and inadvertent transfer of impermissible substances to horses. This session focuses on naturally occurring substances in feed, forage and bedding and how horsemen can protect themselves.
“We have to be cognizant what’s in the barn,” Hamelback said.

The Tampa Bay Downs HBPA is the host affiliate, including sponsoring an afternoon at Tampa Bay Downs on March 15.

View the complete agenda, speakers and panelists here.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Persie Wins National HBPA Claiming Horse of the Year Award

Persie (Photo courtesy Bush Racing Stable)
Persie, a winner of 10 races from 17 starts in 2018, has been named Claiming Horse of the Year by the National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association.

Persie was one of only five horses in the United States with 10 or more wins last year. Three other horses also achieved 10 wins, and only Arriesgado, who competed in Puerto Rico, had more with 11.

Persie was claimed by Bush Racing Stable for $8,000 on May 24 at Penn National in Grantville, PA, after winning three times during the year for owner Adam Staple and trainer Brandon Kulp. The Street Sense gelding then won seven of his next 11 races, including six straight, for trainer Lester Stickler Jr. William Otero rode Persie to all but one of the wins for Bush Racing.

From 17 starts in 2018, Persie earned $114,372 – more than double his previous lifetime earnings – en route to earning Penn National’s 2018 Horse of the Year award from the Pennsylvania HBPA. Bred in Kentucky by Elkstone Group LLC, Persie began 2019 right where he left off – the 6- year-old won a starter allowance at Laurel Park on January 24.

“Every owner and trainer knows that it’s hard enough to win just one race, so for a horse to win 10 in a year is quite an accomplishment,” said Eric Hamelback, CEO of the National HBPA. “We congratulate Persie and his connections on an outstanding season.”

The National HBPA also presents a Claiming Crown Horse of the Year Award to one of the winning horses from the $1.1-million Claiming Crown at Gulfstream Park. The 2018 winner of that award will be honored at the TOBA National Awards Dinner later this year.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Iowa Horsemen to Leverage Gaming Experience for Benefit of Iowa

The Iowa Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (HBPA) announced today their intent to become the single license holder in Iowa for sports wagering.

Their bill, which was recently released by the state government committees in both the Iowa House as HSB 124 and Senate as SSB 1100, demonstrates the horsemen’s unique ability to implement sports wagering in Iowa with simplicity, security, demonstrated prior success and an ability and willingness to keep all proceeds in the hands of Iowans.

“We believe this is the simplest option for everyone involved,” said Jon Moss, Executive Director of the Iowa HBPA.  “Having one contract to oversee and manage is much easier to execute than 10 or 20.  We can effectively bring one simple, unified wagering platform to everyone.  And we’ve proven we can successfully implement wagering in Iowa.”

The Iowa HBPA has been successfully conducting Advanced Deposit Wagering (ADW) in Iowa since 2012.  Many experts believe ADW will comprise over 50% of total sports wagers in Iowa, so proven experience is valuable.

Further, the Iowa HBPA bill uses existing language that proposes sports wagering only be offered by ADW and in Iowa’s casinos.  This gives assurances to the public and to the legislative body that wagering will be conducted with a high degree of security and integrity.  In its nearly seven years of ADW experience, the Iowa HBPA has been proven successful at mitigating the risk of underage or illegal gambling.

“We also believe one of the most persuasive pieces of our bill is the opportunity to keep all proceeds right here in Iowa,” says Moss.  “After all, if Iowans spend their money here, it should benefit our state economy.”

Moss continues, “We want to bring as many partners along as possible.  Local non-profits, casinos, the state of Iowa and our agricultural industry should all benefit from sports wagering.  Other options leave many of these behind.  We have established partners to implement sports wagering here, and we can do it for the benefit of everyone involved.”

With the Iowa HBPA as the unified license holder, Iowa can keep with the spirit of the original bill Governor Terry Brandstad signed to allow casinos to operate in Iowa.  That bill, which allows casinos in Iowa to exist today, was enacted to support horse racing and the core of Iowa’s economy – agriculture.  The Iowa HBPA is also following in the footsteps of other Thoroughbred horsemen bringing sports wagering to their states in a responsible manner.

In 2018, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the State of New Jersey and the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (NJTHA) in a lawsuit that allowed the New Jersey horsemen to conduct sports wagering in New Jersey.  That legislation and the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act allowed individual states the freedom to implement sports wagering however they deem appropriate.

The Iowa HBPA is a non-profit 501(c)(6) trade association that represents all horsemen and women who run Thoroughbred horses within the state of Iowa.  Currently there are 1,200 members, comprised of individuals who have raced Thoroughbred horses in the past two calendar years.  The Iowa HBPA is also an affiliate member of the National HBPA, based in Lexington, KY.  The National HBPA represents over 30,000 members in North America.

(from Iowa HBPA news release)

Thursday, December 13, 2018

The Interactive, Electronic Edition of The Horsemen’s Journal Winter 2018 Issue is Now Available

The interactive, electronic version of The Horsemen’s Journal’s Winter 2018 issue is now available online. It is an enhanced version of our Winter issue, which is currently being mailed. To view it, click here.

Features in the issue include:

One for the Record Books 
The 20th renewal of the Claiming Crown shatters the event’s handle mark at Gulfstream Park

Healing Horses and Humans
The Thoroughbred Makeover showcased the versatility and talent of Thoroughbreds after leaving the track

A Vital Purpose
The Man O’ War Project brings veterans and horses together to treat PTSD

Tackling the Lameness Problem
A collaborative study on joint injections between the National HBPA and veterinarians is bearing knowledge

Hitting the Threshold of Common Sense
The time for screening limits to guard against environmental transfer is now

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.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

August 15 is Deadline to Nominate for the Thoroughbred Industry Employee Awards

Just a reminder that nominations for the Thoroughbred Industry Employee Awards Presented by Godolphin close on August 15. The TIEA Awards recognize and reward the outstanding talent, diligence and commitment of the farm and racing stable staff who are at the heart of our sport. The awards themselves are separated into six distinct categories which carry a total prize-pool of $128,000, along with specially commissioned trophies for the winners.

Get more info and nomination forms at

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Summer 2018 Issue of The Horsemen's Journal Now Online

The interactive, electronic version of The Horsemen’s Journal’s Summer 2018 issue is now available online. It is an enhanced version of our Winter issue, which is currently being mailed. To view it, click here.

Features in the issue include:

Alphabet Soup: Still Beating the Odds
The Old Friends resident is benefiting from a new cancer treatment that is helping gray horses

The Power of Social Media
How the Kentucky HBPA is using social media to spread the word about racing

Embracing the Race
A passionate supporter of horse racing is trying to raise the sport’s profile

Trace-Level Identifications Are Not Positives
The scientifically correct and public relations-appropriate approach to medication regulation

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, June 13, 2018

Jon Miller of NBC Sports to Deliver Keynote Address at Thoroughbred Owner Conference

Jon Miller - Photo courtesy NBC Sports Group
Jon Miller, the president of programming for NBC Sports Group, will deliver the keynote address at the fifth Thoroughbred Owner Conference, to be held from October 30 through November 1, 2018, in Louisville, Ky. The conference leads into the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, which are scheduled for November 2-3 at Churchill Downs.

The goal of the Thoroughbred Owner Conference, which is co-hosted by OwnerView and BloodHorse and presented by Churchill Downs and Breeders’ Cup, is to educate, inform, and entertain new, prospective, and current Thoroughbred owners through a series of panels, networking opportunities, and social events.

As president of programming, Miller oversees nearly 9,500 hours of annual programming for NBC Sports and NBC Sports Network (NBCSN), including the Triple Crown races, Breeders’ Cup, NFL, NHL, French Open, Notre Dame Football, Tour de France, IndyCar, and NBC’s golf properties.

In 2011, McKinsey & Company’s study, “Driving Sustainable Growth for Thoroughbred Racing and Breeding,” which was commissioned by The Jockey Club, found that horse racing was suffering from a lack of television coverage. Under Miller’s leadership, NBC Sports Group has significantly expanded its national coverage of horse racing from 23 hours in 2011 to 85 hours this year. For the fifth year, NBC and NBCSN are airing races from the Breeders' Cup Challenge Series: Win and You're In, presented by America's Best Racing, and NBC hosted a record five hours of live coverage on this year’s Kentucky Derby day. In total, NBC and NBCSN aired more than 30 hours of coverage in support of this year’s Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes.

“Jon Miller and his team at NBC Sports Group have been tremendous ambassadors for horse racing through their increased national coverage of our sport,” said James L. Gagliano, president and COO of The Jockey Club. “We are thrilled that he is able to speak at the Thoroughbred Owner Conference and share his insights on the most effective strategies for broadcasting horse racing and growing the sport.”

In addition to the variety of panels and speakers, conference attendees will have the opportunity to attend Breeders’ Cup events such as the post-position draw and reception and workouts from the Breeders’ Cup Trackside Breakfast Marquee. Attendees will also be able to tour farms in the Lexington Bluegrass region and are invited to an evening reception at the Kentucky Derby Museum. Conference registrations also include reserved seating tickets for both days of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.

The full schedule of events is available at Registration for the conference is now open.

OwnerView is a joint effort spearheaded by The Jockey Club and the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association to encourage ownership of Thoroughbreds and provide accurate information on aspects of ownership such as trainers, public racing syndicates, the process of purchasing and owning a Thoroughbred, racehorse retirement, and owner licensing.

Additional information about OwnerView and the Thoroughbred Owner Conference is available at or by contacting Gary Falter at or (859) 224-2803.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Yavapai Downs gets Unanimous Approval to Move Forward

Photo by Coady Photography
Yavapai Downs took another important step toward bringing summertime horse racing back to Arizona as the Arizona Racing Commission unanimously approved a three-year temporary permit for the track’s new ownership group.

Plans call for live racing to begin at Yavapai Downs in 2019, running from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day. Simulcast wagering could begin as early as July 1 this year to build purses for the live season, with the first Off Track Betting facility to be at the racetrack site in Prescott Valley.

Yavapai Downs last conducted racing in 2010. The track was purchased out of federal bankruptcy court for $3.22 million by J&J Equine Enterprises LLC, an entity formed by brothers and Phoenix-based JACOR Partners principals Tom, Dave and Mike Auther and their partner Joe Jackson, along with longtime racing executive Corey Johnsen. J&J Equine Enterprises was granted a temporary permit to conduct live racing for fiscal years 2019, 2020 and 2021. A permanent permit is pending the Arizona Racing Commission staff completing its due diligence.

In its meeting last Thursday, the Arizona Racing Commission also approved veteran racetrack operator Ann McGovern as the track’s general manager.

Yavapai Downs sits on 120 acres on the northeast edge of Prescott Valley, located eight miles from downtown Prescott in a rapidly growing market.

(from JR Communications news release)

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

New Full Tuition Scholarship Offered by the Race Track Industry Program

A new four-year, full-tuition scholarship award, the Odds On Racing Scholarship, has just been announced by the University of Arizona Race Track Industry Program.

“This is such an incredible opportunity for students - who may have thought that attending the UA to prepare for a career in racing was financially out of reach - to take that first step toward their career goals,” said Wendy Davis, Director of the Race Track Industry Program.

The Odds On Racing Scholarship will be available to incoming freshmen or transfer students and will cover all tuition costs of attending the UA’s RTIP.

The scholarship is thanks to a very generous donation from racing enthusiast and horse owner Dana Parham and is named for his Standardbred racing operation, Odds On Racing Stable. Parham donated the funding for the scholarship to support an industry that he’s passionate about and has been involved with in a variety of areas over the years. Through this gift, he’s supporting the next generation of professionals who will steward the sport into the future.

“We are incredibly grateful for this gift and the doors it will open for the students who receive it. This award allows the best and brightest students, from any financial background, who are interested in racing to attend the UA and join the list of distinguished RTIP alumni,” said Davis.

Especially appropriate is the name of the scholarship – Odds On Racing. This gift will certainly allow the recipient to be the odds-on favorite to succeed in their career goals.

For more info go to

Thursday, February 15, 2018

ELD and CDL Webinar Recording Available from AHC

While registration filled up quickly for the American Horse Council's First Quarter 2018 webinar on the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) and Commercial Drivers License (CDL) requirements, the AHC recorded the webinar in order to share with AHC members and horsemen.

This is a multifactorial issue, with requirements for a CDL varying from state to state. The AHC is planning on hosting a second webinar on this topic in the coming weeks, and will be meeting with the Department of Transportation this coming Friday to further address how to best communicate the complexities of the requirements to the equine industry.

The AHC recommends contacting your state Department of Transportation for specific questions on the CDL regulations for your state. To view a list of state by state contacts, please click here.

You can access the webinar recording by clicking here.

If you have any questions, please contact the AHC at

Monday, February 5, 2018

Topics Announced for National HBPA Convention in New Orleans

Sports betting and its possible effects on horse racing. Stemming the dearth of backside employees. Horses’ inadvertent exposure to recreational and prescription medications. Needing solutions, not just funding, for Thoroughbred aftercare. Where the trainer absolute-insurer rule stands. Horsemen as citizen marketers.

Those are among the discussions taking center stage at the National HBPA Convention, March 13-17 at New Orleans’ Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel in the fabled French Quarter. The convention is sponsored by the Louisiana division of the Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association. Details on registration, hotel reservations and agenda are available at

Prominent owner-breeder Clay Whitham of Whitham Family Thoroughbreds will deliver the keynote address the afternoon of March 14. The convention features panels and presentations March 14 and 15, along with the morning of March 16, followed by an afternoon of racing at the Fair Grounds. Convention registration opens March 13, with the HBPA board meeting the morning of March 17.

“The HBPA Convention’s mission is to provide insight, information and a variety of perspectives to keep our horsemen up to date in a rapidly-changing world, to let our membership and their HBPA representatives know how owners and trainers are impacted by regulatory changes, technology advances and business trends and how they might better their operations and our sport,” said Eric Hamelback, the National HBPA’s chief executive officer. “As our motto says, we are ‘horsemen helping horsemen,’ while also providing ways for horsemen to help themselves and be leaders into the future.”

“The 2018 HBPA Convention will feature luminaries in such areas as equine law, drug testing, workers’ compensation, workforce issues and marketing. Our discussions promise to be informative and engaging,” said National HBPA president Leroy Gessmann. “Mr. Clay Whitham — horseman, businessman and banker — is the perfect keynote speaker, combining his family’s love, passion and perseverance in the sport with understanding of the challenges we all face.”

In addition to industry experts, the convention panelists include outside authorities bringing valuable insight into horse racing. Among them:

  • Greg Bensel, senior vice president for communications for the Tom Benson-owned NFL New Orleans Saints and NBA Pelicans, as well as general manager of Tom and Gayle Benson’s GMB Racing.
  • Joe Asher, CEO of the U.S. operation for the prominent British bookmaking concern William Hill. Asher joins the National Thoroughbred Racing Association’s Alex Waldrop and Michele Fischer of Sportech to discuss new challenges horse racing may face with the likelihood of sports-betting expansion.
  • Ted Shults, an international drug-test expert with background as an attorney and research toxicologist and who has worked for the U.S. Department of Justice, Department of the Army and as corporate counsel and director of legal affairs for CompuChem Laboratories, which works with the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal and state agencies.
  • Dr. Scott Stanley, principal chemist at the University of California-Davis’ Kenneth L. Maddy Equine Analytical Chemistry Laboratory that handles California’s horse-racing testing and who has worked nationally and internationally in the fields of equine pharmacology, analytical chemistry and anti-doping detection.
  • Dr. Emily Weiss, who oversees the strategic direction of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ Equine Welfare program.

These and other speakers will highlight panels and presentations. Additionally the NHBPA will honor the life of longtime horseman and NHBPA leader Kent Stirling, as well as Nebraska horseman Bob Lee with formal resolutions.

The National HBPA Claiming Horse of the Year will also be honored with a presentation to the owners of Mended, Mr. and Mrs. Troy Onorato. The Northern California-based Mended, now 5, was claimed Jan. 6, 2017, for $12,500. She lost that day but went 10 for 10 the rest of the year for the Onoratos and trainer John F. Martin, capped by the $110,000 Claiming Crown Glass Slipper at Gulfstream Park.

About the National HBPA
Founded in 1940, the National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association is the world’s largest Thoroughbred horsemen’s organization, representing approximately 30,000 owners and trainers throughout the United States and Canada. The responsibilities of the NHBPA and its affiliates have greatly expanded as the racing industry has become more complex. In addition to its original general benevolence mission, the HBPA is the leading force for horsemen in negotiating contracts with tracks as well as the advancement of the sport through safety and integrity initiatives, promoting racing and assisting in the development of aftercare programs for retired racehorses.

The National HBPA is proud partner with its corporate sponsors: Big Dee’s Tack & Vet Supplies, Lavin Insurance Group LLC, Xpressbet, NTRA Advantage,, Red Brand, Finish Line Horse Products Inc., Daily Racing Form and Horseman Labor Solutions.

NTRA Safety & Integrity Alliance, RMTC to Present New Regulatory Vet Continuing Education Conference

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) Safety & Integrity Alliance and the Racing Medication Testing Consortium (RMTC) today announced a new two-day continuing education conference for regulatory and official racetrack veterinarians. The inaugural Regulatory/Official Veterinary CE – set for June 25-26 at Keeneland, preceding the Grayson-Jockey Club Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit (WSS) on June 27 – will cover topics related to pre-race examinations, on-track protocols, test barn best practices, data and documentation, technology resources, and biosecurity.

“Regulatory veterinarians hold a unique position in the protection of the health and welfare of the horse,” said Dr. Dionne Benson, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer of the RMTC. “The goal of this CE is to provide training directly related to their mission.”

The agenda was developed by Benson and Steve Koch, Executive Director of the NTRA Safety & Integrity Alliance in collaboration with a committee of Equine Medical Directors and racetrack veterinarians. Approval for veterinary CE credits is anticipated in advance of the conference.

“Consistency of protocols across North American racing is critical to protect the welfare of the traveling horse,” Koch said. “It is therefore crucial that every track and regulatory authority ensure their veterinarians participate in this one-of-a-kind event.”

Participation in #RegVetCE18 is limited to active official vets employed or sponsored by a racetrack or regulatory authority. Select additional participants may be admitted at the discretion of the organizers.

Registration is $250/person and includes all meals each day. The registration deadline is June 1. Online registration will be available in coming weeks but spots may be reserved immediately by contacting Julia Sisoumankhara of the RMTC at or (859) 759-4081.

Confirmed speakers and topics include:
  • Larry Bramlage D.V.M., M.S., D.A.C.V.S. (Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital); Dr. Tim Grande D.V.M. (California Horse Racing Board); Dr. Michael Hardy D.V.M. (Indiana Grand Racing and Casino, Indiana Horse Racing Commission); Dr. Mary Scollay D.V.M. (Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, University of Kentucky) Dr. Scott Hay, D.V.M. (Teigland, Franklin and Brokken Equine) on pre-race examination protocols including hands on practice in the barn areas
  • Dionne Benson Esq. D.V.M. (Racing Medication & Testing Consortium) on North American pre-race examination standards and medication regulation
  • Cathy O’Meara M.B.A. and Kristin Leshney, Esq. (The Jockey Club) on in-the-field implementation of the InCompass Solutions Veterinary Module
  • Dr. Jeff Blea D.V.M. (Von Bluecher, Blea & Hunkin Equine Medicine and Surgery), Dr. Christy Klatt D.V.M. (Minnesota Racing Commission, Arkansas Racing Commission), Dr. Lynn Hovda RPh, D.V.M., M.S., D.A.C.V.I.M. (Minnesota Racing Commission, Safety Call, Inc., University of Minnesota), and Dr. Greg Taylor D.V.M. (Veterinary Consultant for NTRA S&I Alliance) on order of raceday procedures
  • Dr. John Hubbell D.V.M., M.S., A.C.V.A.A. (Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital) on raceday emergency medications
  • Dr. Robert Hunt D.V.M., M.S., D.A.C.V.S. (Hagyard Equine Medical Institute) on providing the best outcome for an injured racehorse
  • Brad Beilly Esq. (Beilly & Strohsahl, P.A.) on the legal ramifications of test sample chain of custody
  • Steve Koch M.S. (NTRA Safety & Integrity Alliance) on 2018 ARCI Model Rules changes including “Veterinary Practices” and “Trainer Treatment Records”
  • Dr. Tim Parkin BSc, BVSc, Ph.D., D.E.C.V.P.H., FHEA, M.R.C.V.S. (University of Glasgow) on the Equine Injury Database (EID)
  • Dr. Rick Arthur D.V.M. (UC Davis/California Horse Racing Board) on data opportunities outside of the EID
  • Dr. Roberta Dwyer M.S., D.V.M., D.A.C.V.P.M. (University of Kentucky) on infectious disease and racetrack biosecurity
  • Dr. Mick Peterson Ph.D. (University of Kentucky, Racing Surfaces Testing Laboratory) on racing surface data valuable to the regulatory veterinarian
Each day will conclude with networking activities, including a Monday evening dinner at the Kentucky Horse Park with guest speaker Ed Bowen, president of the Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation and noted racing historian.

Additional speakers will be announced as they are confirmed.

The Regulatory/Official Veterinary CE is designed to complement the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit (WSS) and all #RegVetCE18 attendees are encouraged to cross-register for both. More information on the WSS can be found at

“This Reg Vet CE opportunity will be an impactful lead-in and, in fact, a seamless component to the next day’s WSS, which is already an essential forum for those dedicated to improving safety and soundness for Thoroughbred racehorses,” said Koch.

Regulatory/Official Veterinary CE is made possible with generous support from Keeneland, the University of Kentucky Ag Equine Programs, NTRA Advantage, the American Association of Equine Practitioners, and the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Gun Runner Voted 2017 Horse of the Year

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Daily Racing Form and the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters announced this evening that Gun Runner, a winner of four Grade 1 races culminating with the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic, was voted the 2017 Horse of the Year at the 47th Annual Eclipse Awards Ceremony at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Fla.

The Eclipse Awards, honoring excellence in North American Thoroughbred racing, presented by The Stronach Group, Daily Racing Form and the Breeders’ Cup, are voted on by the NTRA, Daily Racing Form (DRF) and the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters (NTWAB).

Owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC and Three Chimneys Farm and trained by Steve Asmussen, Gun Runner received 248 out of a possible 250 first-place votes for Horse of the Year. Juddmonte Farms’ Arrogate, who was last year’s Champion 3-year-old, received two first place votes.

Gun Runner, who was also named the Champion Older Dirt Male earlier in the evening, won 5 of 6 starts during his 4-year-old season, including dominant victories in the Razorback Handicap at Oaklawn Park in April, the Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill Downs in June, the Whitney and Woodward at Saratoga in August, and then finished the year with a front-running 2 1/4-length victory in the Classic at Del Mar. Gun Runner’s only defeat last year came in the $10 million Dubai World Cup in the United Arab Emirates, when he finished second to Arrogate. Gun Runner later turned the tables on Arrogate, who dead-heated for fifth in the Classic. Gun Runner, ridden in all of his races last year by Florent Geroux, finished the year with earnings of $6,950,700.

A chestnut son of Candy Ride (ARG) out of Quiet Giant by Giant’s Causeway, Gun Runner was bred in Kentucky by Besilu Stables. Gun Runner is scheduled to make his final career start in Saturday’s $16 million Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park, and then will be retired to stud duty at Three Chimneys Farm in Versailles, Kentucky.

With the crowning of Gun Runner, Steve Asmussen becomes the first trainer since the Eclipse Awards began in 1971 to train the Horse of the Year winner on four occasions. In addition to Gun Runner, Asmussen, a member of Thoroughbred Racing’s Hall of Fame, trained Curlin to Horse of the Year titles in 2007 and 2008 and the filly Rachel Alexandra in 2009.

In other awards tonight, two horses from the barn of Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert captured the 3-year-old male and 3-year-old filly titles. Gary and Mary West’s West Coast, winner of the Travers and Pennsylvania Derby was named Champion 3-year-old Male, and China Horse Club’s Abel Tasman, winner of the Kentucky Oaks and the Coaching Club American Oaks, was named Champion 3-year-old filly.

The Champion 2-year-old Male title went to Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner Good Magic, who is trained by Chad Brown, who was also named Outstanding Trainer for the second consecutive year.

Juddmonte Farms, which campaigned Arrogate to victories in the both the Pegasus and Dubai World Cups, was named Champion owner, and Clearksy Farms, breeders of Arrogate and Abel Tasman, was named the Outstanding Breeder. Jose Ortiz, who led all riders with more than $27 million in earnings, was named Champion Jockey.

The complete list of 2017 Eclipse Awards winners and vote totals appears below:

(Horse ages in parentheses where applicable; Country codes indicate a foreign breeding designation)

Two-Year-Old Male: Good Magic
Two-Year-Old Filly: Caledonia Road
Three-Year-Old Male: West Coast
Three-Year-Old Filly: Abel Tasman
Older Dirt Male: Gun Runner (4)
Older Dirt Female: Forever Unbridled (5)
Male Sprinter: Roy H (5)
Female Sprinter: Unique Bella (3)
Male Turf Horse: World Approval (5)
Female Turf Horse: Lady Eli (5)
Steeplechase Horse: Scorpiancer (IRE) (8)
Owner: Juddmonte Farms, Inc.
Breeder: Clearsky Farms
Jockey: Jose Ortiz
Apprentice Jockey: Evin Roman
Trainer: Chad Brown
Horse of the Year: Gun Runner (4)
The Eclipse Awards
Eclipse Awards are bestowed upon the Thoroughbred horses and individuals whose outstanding achievements have earned them the title of Champion in their respective divisions. The Eclipse Awards are named after the great 18th-Century racehorse and foundation sire Eclipse, who began racing at age five and was undefeated in 18 starts, including eight walkovers. Eclipse sired the winners of 344 races, including three Epsom Derbies.

Voting Overview
In voting that concluded Jan. 2, 2018, Eclipse Awards voters cast their ballots to rank the top three horses and individuals in each Championship division on a 10-5-1 point system basis. This voting established the top three finalists in each division, whose names were released on Jan. 5, 2018.

The tallies below represent only first-place votes from members of the consolidated voting entities, NTRA, Daily Racing Form and National Turf Writers and Broadcasters.

Voter participation rate: 250/269= 92.9%

Two-Year-Old Male (Name, First-Place Votes)
Good Magic, 131; Bolt d’Oro, 113; Catholic Boy, 3; Firenze Fire, 1; Mendelssohn, 1; Solomini, 1.

Two-Year-Old Filly
Caledonia, Road, 161; Rushing Fall, 68; Moonshine Memories, 17; Dream Tree, 2; Dream It Is, 1; Road to Victory, 1.

Three-Year-Old Male
West Coast, 229; Always Dreaming, 14; Battle of Midway, 5; Irap, 1; Mastery, 1.

Three-Year-Old Filly
Abel Tasman, 244; Unique Bella, 5; Elate, 1.

Older Dirt Male
Gun Runner, 247; Arrogate, 3.

Older Dirt Female
Forever Unbridled, 237; Songbird, 8; Stellar Wind, 4; Voter Abstentions, 1.

Male Sprinter
Roy H, 241; Imperial Hint, 5; Drefong, 1; Mind Your Biscuits, 1; Stormy Liberal, 1; Voter Abstentions, 1.

Female Sprinter
Unique Bella, 90, Paulassilverlining, 60; Ami’s Mesa, 41; Bar of Gold, 36; Lady Aurelia, 8; By the Moon, 5; American Gal, 3; Finley’sluckycharm, 1; Voter Abstentions, 6.

Male Turf Horse
World Approval, 211; Beach Patrol 20; Talismanic (GB), 11; Highland Reel (IRE), 8.

Female Turf Horse
Lady Eli, 203; Wuheida (GB), 33; Off Limits, 12; Cambodia, 1; La Coronel, 1.

Steeplechase Horse
Scorpiancer (IRE), 92; All the Way Jose, 70; Mr. Hot Stuff, 35; Modem (GB), 7; Diplomat, 4; Swansea Mile (IRE), 3; Voter Abstentions, 39.

Juddmonte Farms, 143; Winchell Thoroughbreds, 31; Godolphin Racing, 21; Sol Kumin, Head of Plains, Sheep Pond Partners, 19; Klaravich Stables, Inc., and William H. Lawrence, 11; Calumet Farm, 7; End Zone Athletics, 3; Charles Fipke, 2; Coolmore, 1; e Five Racing Thoroughbreds, 1; Fox Hill Farm, 1; Live Oak Plantation, 1; John Oxley, 1; Stonestreet Stables, 1; Voter Abstentions, 7.

Clearsky Farms, 141; WinStar Farm, 72; Charles Fipke, 8; Belisu Stables, 7; Live Oak Stud, 6; Godolphin Racing/Darley, 4; Brereton C. Jones, 3; Adena Springs, 1; Calumet Farm, 1; Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey, 1; Voter Abstentions, 6.

Chad Brown, 215; Bob Baffert, 16; Steve Asmussen, 13; Mark Casse, 2; Todd Pletcher, 2; Voter Abstentions, 2.

Jose Ortiz, 189; Mike Smith, 45; Irad Ortiz, Jr.,10; Javier Castellano, 4; Voter Abstentions, 2.

Apprentice Jockey
Evin Roman, 232; Katie Clawson, 4; Jenn Miller, 1. Voter Abstentions, 13.

Horse of the Year
Gun Runner, 248; Arrogate, 2

Award of Merit
The recipient of the Award of Merit, voted on by a panel of representatives from the three presenting organizations and previously announced, is Frank Stronach. The Award of Merit is presented to honor outstanding lifetime achievement in the Thoroughbred industry.

Special Award
The recipient of the Special Awards, as voted by a panel representing the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters and Daily Racing Form, and previously announced, are San Luis Rey Downs/Camarero Racetrack Rescue and Response, and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association for improvements in federal regulations for horseplayers and the industry.

Media Eclipse Awards
Media Eclipse Awards also are given in the categories of photography, audio and multi-media Internet, news/enterprise writing, feature/commentary writing, national television–feature and national television–live racing programming to recognize members of the media for outstanding coverage of Thoroughbred racing. The 2017 Media Eclipse Awards winners, determined by a judges’ panel for each category and previously announced, are:

Live Racing Programming – NBC Sports – “2017 Kentucky Derby,” Rob Hyland, Coordinating Producer; May 6, 2017.

Television Feature – NBCSN –  “My Kentucky Home,” Tom Hammond, Narrator and co-producer; May 3, 2017.

Audio/Multi-Media and Internet – Daily Racing Form – “Chasing Man o’ War’s Ghost,” Barbara Livingston, writer, photographer and narrator, March 24, 2017.

Writing – News/Enterprise – Denise Steffanus – “A Call for Common Sense Testing,” Trainer magazine, February-March, 2017.

Writing – Feature/Commentary – Jason Frakes – “Gunnevera Trainer Kidnapped Twice, Now in Kentucky Derby,” which was published in the Louisville Courier-Journal on April 30, 2017.

Photography – Nancy Rokos – “Fractious Two-Year-Old,” Burlington (N.J.) County Times, October 7, 2017.