w w w . s o u t hernracehorse.com MARCH/APRIL 2014
Covering the Thoroughbred industry in Texas, Oklahoma and around the region
Now g in covergia Geor uth o and S lina Caro
Official Art of the Kentucky Derby®
Artist Captures the Spirit of America’s Greatest Race In This •• Georgia Texas and Louisiana Horses Aim for Louisville Issue: • Great Redeemer’s “Epic” Journey in the 1979 Derby
A Division of Center Hills Farm
Kipling (Gulch-Weekend Storm, by Storm Bird)
Toccet (Awesome Again-Cozzene’s Angel, by Cozzene)
Save Big Money (Storm Cat-Tomisue’s Delight, by A.P. Indy)
The Visualiser (Giant’s Causeway-Smokey Mirage, by Holy Bull)
Sire of Breeders’ Cup winner and all-time leading Oklahoma-bred KIP DEVILLE ($3.3 million in earnings) 2014 Fee: $2,500
Versatile, record-setting multiple stakes-placed runner out of G1 millionaire Sire of SW MAMA’S MAD MONEY in first crop 2014 Fee: $2,000
Progeny earnings of more than $11.5 million including 2014 SW AZ RIDGE 2014 Fee: $2,500
$1 million yearling and graded stakesplaced son of GIANT’S CAUSEWAY First foals to race are 3yos of 2014 2014 Fee: $1,500
All fees are stands and nurses All stallions are nominated to the Oklahoma Bred Program, Oklahoma Stallion Stakes, Iowa Stallion Stakes and the Breeders’ Cup
675 W. 470 Rd. • Pryor, Oklahoma 74361 Phone: 918-825-4256 • Cell: 918-271-2266 • Fax: 918-825-4255 www.mightyacres.com
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early flyer Gilded Time – Bistra, by Classic Go Go
Texas’ leading juvenile sire in 2013 by stakes winners and earnings, EARLY FLYER had four 2-year-old stakes horses last year, including undefeated SOLID SENDER and Texas Champion 2-Year-Old Colt/Gelding TIME IZ FLYIN. He also sired Texas Champion 3-Year-Old Filly TASTEFULLYXCESSIVE. 2014 Fee: $3,500
INDYGO MOUNTAIN A.P. Indy – Mountain Girl, by Mountain Cat A winning son of the great A.P. INDY, INDYGO MOUNTAIN brings an impeccable pedigree to the Lone Star State. His immediate female family includes Grade 1 winners SIPHONIC and LARAGH and millionaire DIXIE DOT COM. 2014 Fee: $1,250
Unbridled’s Song – Proposal, by Mt. Livermore From a family loaded with speed and soundness, SILVER CITY was a brilliant sprinter who had the stamina to go around two turns (second in the G3 Southwest Stakes at a mile). His dam’s full brother, G3 winner and G1-placed MULTIPLE CHOICE, raced until age 8! His first foals hit the track in 2014! 2014 Fee: $2,000
BERNARDINI – FOREST HEIRESS, BY FOREST WILDCAT Out of multiple graded SW FOREST HEIRESS (earner of $419,201 w/ a 105 Beyer), who is a full sister to WILDCAT HEIR from the family of LOUIS QUATORZE and AWESOME GEM. 2014 Fee: $1,500
WIMBLEDON Wild Rush – Strawberry Clover, by Darn That Alarm Formerly Texas’ leading freshman and second-crop sire, WIMBLEDON has sired nine stakes horses including 2013 Texas Champion 3-Year-Old Colt/Gelding and Texas Horse of the Year WORLDVENTURER with earnings of $263,182.
2014 Fee: $2,000 2
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
my golden song
Unbridled’s Song – Golden Par, by Gold Meridian
MY GOLDEN SONG, Texas’ leading freshman sire in 2011, leading second-crop sire in 2012 and leading third-crop sire in 2013, is off to another great start in 2014 as two-time stakes winner FIFTYSHADESOFGOLD won the Two Altazano Division of the Texas Stallion Stakes and TRIUMPH AND SONG has recorded three stakes wins this year alone at Sam Houston! 2014 Fee: $4,000
MY GOLDEN SONG
Unbridled’s Song – Golden Par, by Gold Meridian First foals arrive in 2009!
MY GOLDEN SONG retired with earnings of $101,050 from six starts with two wins at Aqueduct and Belmont Park.
FIFTYSHADESOFGOLD, who was G2-placed at Saratoga, wins with ease in the Texas Stallion Stakes with her third win in four starts to push her bankroll to $142,790
MY GOLDEN SONG finished third to Kentucky Derby (G1) winner BARBARO in the Holy Bull Stakes (G3) and fourth the G1 winner FIRST SAMURAI in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2).
In a span of just 35 days at Sam Houston, TRIUMPH AND SONG won three stakes on turf and dirt, including the Sam Houston Sprint Cup against open company to increase his earnings to $250,556
By proven sire UNBRIDLED’S SONG, winner of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) and sire of 71 stakes winners, including G1 winners UNBRIDLED ELAINE, OCTAVE, SPLENDID BLENDED, POLITICAL FORCE, FIRST DEFENCE, BUDDHA, MAGNIFICANT SONG and SONGANDAPRAYER, and 2008 Kentucky Derby (G1) runner-up EIGHT BELLES.
From a female family known for its soundness – dam is GOLDEN PAR ($318,636), a multiple stakes-winner and graded stakes producer who won nine of 26 starts.
Inquiries to Ken Carson P.O. Box 966, Pilot Point, Texas 76258 Phone (940) 686-5552 • Fax (940) 686-2179 E-mail: email@example.com • Website: www.valorfarm.com Accredited Texas Stallion • Nominated to the Texas Stallion Stakes Series and Breeders’ Cup
JET PHONE Phone Trick – Jet Route, by Alydar
JET PHONE’S first runner, 2010 Texas Champion 2-Year-Old Colt/Gelding ACES N KINGS, won four stakes and earned more than $245,000. His newest stakes winner is ACES N JACKS, a 4 ½-length winner of the Groovy Stakes at Sam Houston. Two of JET PHONE’S four lifetime starters are stakes winners! 2014 Fee: $1,250
After a 6 ½-length maiden win at first asking, ACES N JACKS went wire-to-wire to win the Groovy Stakes at Sam Houston by 4 ½ lengths
The Estate of Clarence Scharbauer, Jr. Ken Carson, General Manager Donny Denton, Farm Manager • David Unnerstall, Attending Veterinarian Post Office Box 966 • Pilot Point, Texas 76258 (940) 686-5552 • Fax (940) 686-2179 www.valorfarm.com
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 3
Southern Racehorse Advertisers Index 5B Farm.............................................36 7S Racing Stables............................58 Asmussen Horse Center....................8 Heidi Bailey......................................59 Biomedical Research Laboratories.....9 Cactus Ridge...................................58 Channon Farm LLC.........................59 Equine Sales Company..................29 Equiwinner........................................11 Eureka Thoroughbred Farm...........46 Flashpoint...........................................7 Going Wild.......................................33 Lane’s End Texas...............................1 Harmony Training Center...............28 Inside Move.....................................59 JEH Stallion Station................. IBC, BC Louisiana Stallion Station................52 Mallory Farm....................................59 Matthewsburg.................................40 Mighty Acres.................................. IFC Mojo Racing Partners.....................14 My Pal Charlie.................................17 NTRA Advantage............................53 Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission/TRAO..........................51 palaMOUNTAINS..............................25 Pelican State Thoroughbreds........59 Prime Ltd. Horse Transport..............59 Procell Thoroughbred Farm...........59 River Oaks Farms.............................47 Rockin’ Z Ranch..............................57 Scrimshaw........................................60 Stephenson Thoroughbred Farms....59 Thoroughbred Athletes Inc............12 Univ. of Arizona Race Track Industry Program.............................60 Valor Farm.......................................2-3 Winners Circle..................................58 4
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
ADVERTISE IN SOUTHERN RACEHORSE! Southern Racehorse magazine is the most effective and affordable way to reach owners, breeders, trainers and others involved in the horse racing industry in Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Georgia, South Carolina and the surrounding region. Southern Racehorse goes to more than 5,000 horsemen, including all members of the Texas Thoroughbred Association (TTA), Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma (TRAO), Georgia Horse Racing Coalition (GHRC), South Carolina Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (SCTOBA) plus more than 1,200 Louisiana horsemen, making it the region’s largest racing and breeding magazine by far. For more information about advertising in Southern Racehorse, including ad rates, deadlines and specifications, go to www.southernracehorse.com/advertising or contact Denis Blake at (512) 695-4541 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Published by Pangaea Enterprises LLC d/b/a Southern Racehorse Southern Racehorse P.O. Box 8645 Round Rock, TX 78683 (512) 695-4541 www.southernracehorse.com Physical Address Southern Racehorse 1341 Meadowild Drive Round Rock, TX 78664 Editor/Publisher Denis Blake email@example.com Art Director Amie Rittler firstname.lastname@example.org Copyeditor Judy Marchman
Contributing Writers Blinkers Off Bunny Hinzman Shelby O’Neill Photographers Ackerley Images Benoit Photo Dede Biles Denis Blake Coady Photography EQUI-PHOTO Tom Ferry Sam Hollis Eddie Ing Reed Palmer Photography Bill Straus Steve Queen Cover Photo Art by Susan Easton Burns/ Courtesy JettStream Productions
Copyright © 2014 Southern Racehorse All rights reserved. Articles may not be reprinted without permission. Southern Racehorse reserves the right to refuse any advertising or copy for any reason. Southern Racehorse makes a reasonable attempt to ensure that advertising claims are truthful, but assumes no responsibility for the truth and accuracy of ads.
CONNECT WITH SOUTHERN RACEHORSE ONLINE! HHH
For the most up-to-date racing and breeding news for Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Georgia and South Carolina, visit Southern Racehorse online at www.southernracehorse.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/southernracehorse. Follow @SRacehorse on Twitter!
Racehorse March/ April 2014
Capturing the Kentucky Derby through art
Departments Editor’s Letter Fast Furlongs Texas Thoroughbred Association News Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma News Georgia Horse Racing Coalition News South Carolina Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association News The Marketplace Classifieds
6 10 18 20 22 23 58
Will a horse bred in Texas, Oklahoma or Louisiana make it to Louisville?
37 A different kind of Derby horse
Intuitive Spirit Georgia artist Susan Easton Burns paints a piece of Kentucky Derby history
Dreaming of Louisville Regional horses are aiming for the Twin Spires of Churchill Downs
Long(shot) Road to the Derby Cast of the Mine That Bird movie “50 to 1” tours the region
Great Redeemer: The Knife at the Gunfight Texas-owned colt made a different kind of history in the Kentucky Derby
20-20 Vision A look back at the 20 stakes run during the Sam Houston Race Park meet
The Gene Genies Genetic testing can help determine which runners will go the distance
Howdy Partner Once banned, partnerships are now booming and helping bring in new owners
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 5
Letter from the EDITOR If you have turned to this page after receiving Southern Racehorse for the first time, you might be wondering how and why the magazine appeared in your mailbox. Thanks to partnerships with the Georgia Horse Racing Coalition (GHRC) and South Carolina Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (SCTOBA), Southern Racehorse, which is published six times annually plus the Southern Racehorse Stallion Register in December, will go to all members of both organizations free of charge. I’d like to thank Steve Crayne, executive director of the GHRC, and Lee Christian, president of the SCTOBA, for helping to make this possible. And I would like to welcome supporters and members of both organizations. Southern Racehorse looks forward to promoting the racing industry in Georgia and South Carolina, as well as around the entire region. You can always find current news and information on our website at southernracehorse.com, our Facebook page at facebook.com/southernracehorse or by following @SRacehorse on Twitter. • I invite you to contact us at any time with your comments or suggestions at (512) 695-4541 or email@example.com. Southern If you are a member of the Texas Thoroughbred Association (TTA) Racehorse or Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma (TRAO) or involved now covers with the industry in Louisiana, you might be wondering why this magazine is now covering Georgia and South Carolina. After all, there is no Georgia Thoroughbed racing in those states, right? Well, that might be true in Georgia, but there is a strong effort underway and to pass pari-mutuel legislation there and bring first-class horse racing to the South state. And the Peach State has a powerful spokesman, or rather spokeshorse, Carolina in Georgia-owned Mucho Macho Man, the winner of last year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic. It might also come as a surprise to know that there have been • two millionaires bred in Georgia (Vivace and Bluesthestandard) compared to just one in Texas (Groovy), although the Lone Star State still has a significant upper hand in overall breeding success. I wish good luck to the Georgia horsemen and horsewomen in their quest, to which many Texans and Oklahomans can surely relate after going through similar and successful efforts to pass pari-mutuel legislation in those states. As for South Carolina, there is indeed racing there in the form of the Aiken Trials and Elloree Trials in the spring and Kingstree Trials in the fall. These non-pari-mutuel events showcase the considerable talents of horses that have come through the many training centers in the Palmetto State, and they attract impressive crowds. The list of horses with ties to South Carolina is lengthy and distinguished, with Ruffian and Secretariat being just two of the many in the state’s legacy of champions. South Carolina is home to the Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame and Museum, and steeplechasing also has a big presence in the state with the Carolina Cup and Colonial Cup, plus the National Steeplechase Museum. While I am excited to cover the industry in both of those states, I promise to continue the same level of coverage for Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana while also providing news and updates for TTA and TRAO members. Nothing will change with the coverage for those states. In this issue, you’ll find a blend of coverage from all five states, from horses—both past and present—aiming for the Kentucky Derby to the artist who created the official poster for Churchill Downs to a look at how partnerships have changed racing in the region and around the country. I hope you enjoy it. Denis Blake Editor/Publisher, Southern Racehorse
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
New for 2014
POMEROY / TWO PUNCH LIL, BY TWO PUNCH | Fee: $2,500 S&N
HOW TO EARN YOUR BREEDING RIGHT To participate in the Spendthrift Share the Upside program the breeder will:
SECURE your spot ! pay a $100 one-time deposit
SIGN your contracts ! stands and nurses contracts (2014 & 2015)
BREED your mare(s) in 2014 & 2015 ! Have live foal each year and pay stud fee of $2,500 each
It’s that simple! Your free breeding right begins in 2016 and continues throughout the breeding life of the stallion. Once you have earned your Lifetime Breeding Right, there are no expenses to you at all.
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 7
Asmussen’s El Primero Training Center 5 Eclipse Award-Winning Champions
190 Stakes Winners
2 Breeders’ Cup Winners
70 Graded Stakes Winners
Follow us to the Winner’s Circle! We break, condition and educate young Thoroughbreds to race. Three El Primero Training Center graduates have already won graded stakes in 2014: TAPITURE (winner of the G3 Southwest this year and G2 Kentucky Jockey Club last year) and UNTAPABLE (winner of G2 Pocahontas last year and G3 Rachel Alexandra this year) both run for Winchell Thoroughbreds and have long histories with our program, and Cathy and Bob Zollars’ DADDY NOSE BEST won the G3 Col. E.R. Bradley at Fair Grounds after being named Horse of the Meet at Remington! All three are trained by Steve Asmussen. Congrats to Steve, his team and all the owners.
WE HAVE BEEN HERE A LONG TIME AND PLAN TO BE JUST AS STRONG IN THE FUTURE! Keith Asmussen
P.O. Box 1861 • Laredo, TX 78044 Phone: 956-723-5436 • Fax: 956-723-5845 • Email: firstname.lastname@example.org • Website: www.asmussens.com 8
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
ILLEGAL DOPING MEETS ITS MATCH Trainers Praise Natural Alternative By: Mark Hansen
The pressure to win is so enormous that many horsemen resort to whatever it takes to get a piece of the purse or a decent sale…even if it means putting their horses’ lives in mortal danger by doping them with illegal synthetic erythropoietin (EPO) drugs to boost endurance. Veterinarian Gary Smith said, “It’s a problem all over the industry. There is no way horses should be put on (synthetic) EPO.” So how do racers win? How do you gain a competitive edge without harming your horses or risking your livelihood? The answer may be found in a safe all-natural horse supplement that supports natural EPO function. Why is EPO boosting so critical? Just like in people, a horse’s muscles require oxygen for fuel. Red blood cells are the body’s oxygen-carrying cells. A higher red blood cell count = more oxygen = more muscle energy. Elevated muscle energy helps the horse perform harder, faster and longer during endurance events. All horses naturally produce EPO in their kidneys to stimulate production of new red blood cells from bone marrow. In short, EPO is a natural “blood builder.” With EPO doping, trainers try to boost the EPO effect to get a winning performance every time. They use a synthetic EPO (recombinant human EPO), even though the side effects can harm the horse. That’s one reason why it’s illegal. Fortunately there’s another option. EPOEquine® is a safe, highly effective natural dietary supplement scientifically engineered for performance horses. A Kentucky trainer who refused to give out his name, said, “I don’t want my competition to know about this.” He found EPO-Equine® to be
so effective that he’s dead set against disclosing who he is, who his horses are, or even where he trains and races. He first started ordering a single jar of EPO-Equine® once a month. Now he’s ordering several CASES each month. And he won’t tell BRL exactly why. He said respectfully, “Sorry – no way.” Bioengineers at U.S. based Biomedical Research Laboratories (BRL), first discovered a completely natural EPO-booster for human athletes (and it’s working miracles for top athletes and amateurs around the world). Seeing these results, horse trainers contacted BRL and asked about using this natural formula for their animals. That’s when the BRL team dug deeper and discovered a proprietary, horse-friendly strain of a common herb that promotes optimal bloodbuilding results. EPO-Equine® is based on the blood-boosting abilities of a certain strain of Echinacea that’s astounding researchers and trainers alike. (It’s not a strain you can find at the local health store.) Veterinarians at the Equine Research Centre in Ontario, Canada ran a double-blind trial investigating the blood building properties of the active ingredient in EPO-Equine® in healthy horses. For 42 days, one group of horses was supplemented with the active ingredient in EPOEquine® and another group of horses was given a placebo. The supplement delivered significant blood building results, increasing red blood cell count and hemoglobin levels. Researchers also observed improved blood quality and increased oxygen transport in the supplemented horses. Improved blood levels leads to elevated exercise physiology and performance. The patent-pending formula in EPO-Equine® contains a dozen different herbs, antioxidants and anti-inflammatory components combined to promote natural red blood cell production…for remarkable speed, strength and stamina right out of the gate. Trainers find it easy to add just 1 scoop (3.2 grams) of EPO-Equine® to the horse’s daily feeding routine in the barn or on the road. Within a few weeks of daily use, you can expect to see increased red blood cell levels with no undesirable side effects. An increase in red blood cell levels can improve muscle performance, supercharge endurance, and enhance recovery after hard exercise. Nothing else is scientifically proven to deliver these benefits in a completely safe and natural formula. Compared to the cost of veterinarians, drugs, icing, tapping the knees, and putting the horse on Bute; or even the consequences of being banned for synthetic doping, EPOEquine® is very affordable at the low price of just $59.95 per jar. Or save $180 if you are ready to commit to a larger trial of 12-jar case for just $539.55 with FREE shipping. EPOEquine® can be ordered at www.EPOEquine.com or 1-800-557-9055, and comes with a 100% money-back satisfaction guarantee.
fastfurlongs Texas Icon Clarence Scharbauer Jr. Dies at 88 winners of prestigious races like the All American Derby and Rainbow Futurity. His interest in Thoroughbreds began at the request of Dorothy, whose parents, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Turner Jr., won the 1959 Kentucky Derby with Tomy Lee. Scharbauer was one of the first investors in Lone Star Park and helped secure its status as a Class 1 racetrack. Scharbauer and his wife were both inducted into the Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2001, and in 2007 he received the lifetime achievement award from the Texas Thoroughbred Association. He was also a past president of the American Quarter Horse Association and a member of the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame. His homebred 3-year-old filly Fiftyshadesofgold, by Valor stallion My Golden Song, won a division of the Texas Stallion Stakes on February 15 at Sam Houston Race Park and is being pointed toward graded stakes down the road. In addition to his success in racing, Scharbauer also raised High Five, who was named grand champion stallion at the 1955 Southwestern Livestock Exposition and Livestock Show in Fort Worth, and Marion’s Girl, a two-time world champion cutting horse. Scharbauer Cattle Co. at one time encompassed nine ranches in Texas and New Mexico, and in 1991 he received the National Golden Sam Hollis Longtime Texas horseman and rancher Clarence Scharbauer Jr. Spur Award as rancher of the year. Scharbauer, whose family has been involved with the development died February 21 in Midland from complications from emergency and growth of Midland since the 1880s, was also a noted philanthrostomach surgery. He was 88. pist, and numerous buildings in the city Scharbauer’s daughter, Pam, bear the Scharbauer name. According to and late wife, Dorothy, raced 1987 its website, the Scharbauer Foundation Kentucky Derby (G1) winner and awarded nearly $7 million in grants in 1988 Horse of the Year Alysheba, 2013 alone. and his Valor Farm in Pilot Point, “He was on a horse from the time he Texas, has long been one of the could walk,” said Ken Carson, general leading stallion farms in the state manager at Valor Farm. “He worked catand a top breeder of Texas-breds. tle on the Scharbauer ranches and beOf the six divisional Texas Chamcame a world-class calf roper. He was a pions in 2013, four were bred great horseman and cowboy. His health by Scharbauer, including Texas kept him from traveling in recent years, Horse of the Year Worldventurer. Reed Palmer Photography/Churchill Downs but he watched races from home and Scharbauer’s earliest racTexas-bred Fiftyshadesofgold, bred and owned saw his filly Fiftyshadesofgold win being pursuits came in the 1950s by Scharbauer and sired by his stallion My Golden fore he died. That really lifted his spirwith American Quarter Horses, Song at Valor Farm, won the $113,400 Debutante its. We will sure miss him.” and he went on to breed the Stakes at Churchill Downs last year. 10
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
Eric Johnston Leaves Sam Houston for Penn National Eric Johnston, the longtime vice president of racing and racing secretary at Sam Houston Race Park, has been named director of racing operations for Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course. Johnston, a native of Grantville, Pennsylvania, where Penn National is located, began his racing career at that facility in 1983 and also served as a racing official in the state of Maryland for five years. He moved to Texas in 1994 to open the then brand new Sam Houston Race Park as stakes coordinator and was soon promoted to director of racing and racing secretary. In addition to his racing office responsibilities, Johnston also had management oversight for the mutuels, simulcast and player services departments at Sam Houston. For the past three seasons, Johnston has also served as director of racing at Fort Erie Race Track in Canada. Penn National Gaming Inc., the parent company of Penn National Race Course, entered into a joint venture ownership agreement with Maxxam, the parent company of Sam Houston Race Park, in 2011. “Eric brings a strong foundation of both racing and management experience to this position,” said Christopher McErlean, vice president of racing for Penn National Gaming Inc. “He has had to be creative in recent years at Sam Houston due to the intense regional racing competition, but the program is always one of the more highly regarded in the country. In addition, Eric knows the Mid-Atlantic region and is passionate about racing—a great combination to help Penn National going into the future.” “I am extremely excited about this next chapter in my racing career,” Johnston said. “While it will be difficult to leave Sam Houston after 20 years, I am looking forward to working with the talented staff at Penn National and helping to elevate a great racing product to the next level.” A replacement for Johnston at Sam Houston has not yet been named.
Southern Racehorse Is Now on Twitter! To follow, simply go to twitter.com/ SRacehorse or follow @SRacehorse.
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 11
ff New $300,000 Turf Sprint Anchors Evangeline Stakes Schedule
The $300,000 Evangeline Downs Turf Sprint, a newly on the main track and the $100,000 Opelousas Stakes created event for 3-year-olds and up at five furlongs on the for 3-year-old and up fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles on grass, is the centerpiece of a revamped Evangeline Downs the turf, headlines a card that also highlights Louisianastakes schedule. A total of 23 stakes worth $2.15 million will bred 3-year-olds in a pair of $70,000 events, the Lafayette Stakes for colts and geldings and the Acadiana be contested at the Louisiana track. The Turf Sprint, featuring the largest purse ever offered for Stakes for fillies. Each race will be contested on the main a Thoroughbred race at Evangeline, highlights a daytime track at seven furlongs. A $100,000 guaranteed Pick 4 program on Saturday, June 21, that is bolstered by three wager will be anchored by the Turf Sprint. Evangeline Downs’ 49th consecutive Thoroughbred open stakes and a total of five stakes. Special post time for that program will be 2:15 p.m. CDT with the normal post season opens Wednesday, April 9. The 84-night meet runs through Saturday, August 30. As in past seasons, racing remaining at 5:40 p.m. for the season. In addition to the new Turf Sprint, some of the will be conducted on a four-evening-a-week schedule, major changes to this year’s stakes schedule include Wednesday through Saturday. For additional information, contact Evangeline Downs at moving the Louisiana Legends Night, a card that features the best Louisiana-bred horses in training squaring (337) 594-3000 or go to evangelinedowns.com. off in eight stakes worth $750,000, from the first weekend in July to Saturday, May 24. Also, the annual D.S. “Shine” Young Memorial, a futurity for Louisiana-bred 2-year-olds (run previously as the Southwest Louisiana Futurity and the Cajun Futurity), has been moved to Saturday, July 5. The “Shine” features both a filly and a colt/gelding division, each offering a $100,000 purse. Trials for the race have been discontinued. “We are very excited about our upcoming Thoroughbred stakes schedule, headlined by the inaugural Turf Sprint, which should What if you could ensure a safe retirement for your racehorse draw top grass sprinters from around North while helping the next generation of horsemen and horsewomen? America as a showcase event for Evangeline DON’T MISS THE 2014 SPORT OF KINGS CHALLENGE Downs, and along with the other marquee Remington Park • June 21-22 races scheduled, should provide a memoWhether you are a hunter, jumper, dressage, barrel racer or just love horses... rable day of racing and entertainment,” we have something to fit your needs. We will also have Western and English said Chris Warren, director of racing operaflat classes. For those of you who bring your family, we will have exhibitions, tions for Delta Downs and Evangeline Downs. a food truck derby, cash awards, awesome prizes and a “Barn Bash” fundraiser Warren added, “We are also confident on Saturday evening. Our judges will be noted Thoroughbred owner MAGGI that the restructuring of our stakes schedMOSS and accomplished eventer STEUART PITTMAN! ule, including the new date for Louisiana Accepting donations of all kinds! Legends Night, will also be a benefit to our Thoroughbred Athletes Inc. horsemen and fans throughout the entire 2851 South Midwest Blvd. • Guthrie, OK 73044 meeting.” (405) 802-1312 • www.thoroughbred-athletes.com www.facebook.com/thoroughbredathletes The Turf Sprint, along with the $100,000 email@example.com Evangeline Mile for 3-year-olds and up
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Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
Southern Racehorse to Cover Thoroughbred Industry in Georgia and South Carolina Southern Racehorse magazine will now provide coverage of the Thoroughbred industry in Georgia and South Carolina in partnership with the Georgia Horse Racing Coalition and South Carolina Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association. In addition to covering the industry in those two states, the magazine will include important updates and news from each organization and will be mailed to their members and supporters. Southern Racehorse has similar agreements with the Texas Thoroughbred Association and Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma and also covers the Thoroughbred industry in Louisiana. “Both Georgia and South Carolina have a long and rich history of Thoroughbred racing, breeding and training, even though neither currently has pari-mutuel racing,” said Denis Blake, editor and publisher of Southern Racehorse. “That tradition continues to this day, as Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Mucho Macho Man is Georgia’s ‘hometown’ horse, and the Aiken, Camden and Elloree areas of South Carolina offer some of the finest training centers in the world. We aim to highlight
the accomplishments of the horsemen, horsewomen and horses associated with Georgia and South Carolina.” The Georgia Horse Racing Coalition (gahorseracing. org) is a group of leading business executives who love horse racing that have joined in an effort to bring first-class horse racing to the state of GeorIn This Iss ue: gia. Their goal through private investment and no tax-related or state funds is to bring to Georgia a state-of-the-art entertainment complex built around horse racing. “We are very excited to be part of Southern Racehorse and look forward to sharing our stories for years to come,” said Georgia Horse Racing Coalition Executive Director Steven Crayne. The South Carolina Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (sctoba.org) operates with the goal of promoting the Thoroughbred industry throughout the state and region while highlighting the positive aspects of breeding, training and racing. “SCTOBA looks forward to our partnership with Southern Racehorse,” said SCTOBA President Lee Christian. “It will provide a great platform for what is going on in training and breeding in South Carolina.” www .sou ther
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Remington Records Strong Numbers for Thoroughbred Meet, Upgrades Television Production After a highly successful Thoroughbred meet that ended in December, Remington Park kicked off its American Quarter Horse and Mixed-breed Season in March with an upgraded highdefinition television system. Global Gaming Solutions, Remington Park’s parent company, continued its facility improvements at the Oklahoma City track with the installation of an HD television control room. Remington Park’s racing action will look better than ever with the newest equipment and technology, helping the broadcast stand out to viewers. More horseplayers and racing fans continue to turn to Remington Park, witnessed by increases in pari-mutuel handle during both racing seasons in 2013. Last year’s Quarter Horse season export handle was up 2.1 percent with an increase of more than $284,000, despite 14 fewer races being contested than in 2012. The drive in export handle continued through the Thoroughbred season with a 14.9 percent increase over 2012, as over $6.2 million more was played on the Remington races than in the prior year. The increase took place despite 12 fewer races and one less race date. Severe weather, in both the spring and the winter, dictated the smaller total of actual races in the 2013 seasons at Remington Park. The number of outlets accepting Remington races has climbed in recent years and a working agreement with TVG, the leader
in horse racing television, has correlated into newfound success. Remington Park partnered with the Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma (TRAO) for an increased awareness campaign during the 2013 Thoroughbred season. Working with TVG since 2010, the campaign has targeted core players, drawing them to Remington Park’s enhanced quality of racing. “We have nationally recognized trainers and owners with stables here at Remington Park,” noted Matt Vance, vice president of racing and wagering. “Our field size averages are amongst the highest in the industry year after year. We have a great facility that we can match with any in our business, and we needed a way to get those messages out to the big players in the export simulcast market. “We also believe our Quarter Horse season will benefit from this awareness campaign,” Vance continued. “We’re branding our product in the most productive way. When players look up and see our graphics and high-definition presence, we believe the familiarity that has been established will drive more handle going forward. We’re very lucky at Remington Park to have great horsemen’s groups in both the Oklahoma Quarter Horse Racing Association and the TRAO. They understand what it takes to reach higher goals.” The Quarter Horse season at Remington Park continues through June 1 with Thoroughbreds set to return on August 15. Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 13
Mojo Racing Partners
Equine Sales Company Sets September 3 Date for Consignor Select Yearling Sale
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
Affordable* and fun opportunities to get your Mojo work’n at the 2014 Lone Star Park Thoroughbred Meet! *A 4% share is $500 (due at signing) + $100 a month for training, vet, and administrative costs
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Grade 2 Winner Neko Bay to Stand at Elite Thoroughbreds in Louisiana
Grade 2 winner Neko Bay will stand the 2014 season at Michele Rodriguez’s and Lee Daniel Thomas’ Elite Thoroughbreds in Louisiana in a deal brokered by Chad Schumer of Schumer Bloodstock. His fee has been set at $3,000, due September 1. Neko Bay formerly stood in Kentucky Neko Bay at Wintergreen Stallion Station and shuttles to Haras Puerta de Hierro in Chile. His first Northern Hemisphere-bred crop are 2-year-olds this year. Trained by John Shirreffs, Neko Bay won five races in the colors of Mr. and Mrs. Jerome S. Moss, led by the 2010 San Pasqual Handicap (G2) at Santa Anita Park. He was beaten by only a half-length when second to Misremembered in the 2010 Santa Anita Handicap (G1) at Santa Anita and placed in the Tokyo City (G3) and Native Diver (G3) handicaps. By leading sire of sires Giant’s Causeway, Neko Bay is out of Grade 2 winner Brulay, a daughter of Rubiano, and a half sister to champion and successful sire Lemon Drop Kid. Brulay’s dam, Charming Lassie, is a half sister to Weekend Surprise, dam of champion sire A. P. Indy. “By one of the best sire of sires around today in Giant’s Causeway,” Schumer said, “and from perhaps the leading stallion-producing family in the U.S. at the moment, Neko Bay is a fantastic prospect and is now available to Louisiana breeders for the first time.” For more information, go to elitethoroughbreds.com.
Equine Sales Company has announced that its 2014 Consignor Select Yearling Sale will be held on Wednesday, September 3, at its sales facility in Opelousas, Louisiana. Equine Sales held its first Consignor Select Yearling Sale this past September with impressive results as 132 head were sold for a total of $1,714,300, with an average of $12,987 and a median of $9,000. The buyback rate was 18 percent, and the sale topper was a $140,000 Louisiana-bred colt by Eskendereya that sold to Brian House from consignor Red River Farms. In 2012, Equine Sales Company held its first-ever auction, and that open yearling sale has already produced some notable runners, including Solid Sender, an undefeated winner of two stakes at Evangeline Downs with earnings of $116,055, and Vicar’s in Trouble, an easy 6 ¾-length winner of this year’s Grade 3 Lecomte Stakes at Fair Grounds Race Course. Vicar’s in Trouble, a Louisiana-bred son of Into Mischief who was consigned by Mark Toothaker for breeder Spendthrift Farm LLC, runs for Eclipse Award-winning owners Ken and Sarah Ramsey. “In a very short period of time, our auctions have already become known as an excellent option for anyone looking for a high-quality racehorse,” said Sales Director Foster Bridewell. “As proven by horses like Solid Sender and Vicar’s in Trouble, whether you are looking to compete in the lucrative Louisianabred program or run against graded stakes company, you can find a runner at our sales. Our facilities are second to none in the region, and we look forward to continued growth this year in our quest to make Equine Sales the top choice for consignors and buyers.” While the majority of horses at Equine Sales Company auctions are Louisiana-breds, the sales are open to horses bred in other states as well. Equine Sales Company has scheduled its inaugural 2-yearolds in training sale for April 28 of this year, with the breeze show set for April 26. For more information on either sale, visit equinesalesofla. com or contact Foster Bridewell at (337) 678-3024 or foster@ equinesalesofla.com.
Cactus Ridge to Stand at Royal Vista Ranches in Oklahoma Grade 3 winner and Grade 1 sire Cactus Ridge will join the stallion roster at Royal Vista Ranches near Wayne, Oklahoma, for the 2014 breeding season. His fee has been set at $5,000 with special consideration to Quarter Cactus Ridge Horse mares. “We are very excited to have this outstanding Thoroughbred stallion join our roster for the upcoming breeding season,” Royal Vista Ranches Farm Manager Laura Wipf-Erickson said. “He has sired a sprint champion and his connection to leading Quarter Horses through his sire
should make him a great out-cross.” Owned by Toby Keith’s Dream Walkin’ Farms, Cactus Ridge has sired 52 stakes horses and 249 winners with earnings of $17.5 million from nine crops to race. He has average earnings per starter of nearly $55,000. His top performers include Grade 1 winner Hot Cha Cha, Canadian Champion Sprinter and Champion 3-Year-Old Colt Hollywood Hit, multiple stakes winner Peyote Patty and Grade 1-placed Supreme Summit. Cactus Ridge retired after an undefeated 2-year-old campaign with victories in the Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Futurity, James C. Ellis Juvenile Stakes and Canterbury Park Juvenile Stakes. A son of leading sire Hennessy, who is also the sire of Grade 1 winner and leading Quarter Horse sire Check Him Out, Cactus Ridge is out of the Grade 1-placed Lycius mare Double Park (Fr). He is a full brother to stakes winner Sebastian County and half brother to stakes winner and multiple stakes producer Harriett Lane. For more information, call (405) 449-7575 or go to royalvistaranches.com.
Texas Stallion Dynameaux to Stand at Seguin Horse Center Texas stallion Dynameaux has been relocated to stand the 2014 breeding season at Seguin Horse Center. He will stand for a $1,500 fee as property of Don H. Ford Jr. Dynameaux, who previously stood at Key to the Hills Farm near Boerne, won six races and placed in eight others in 21 career starts. He earned a black-type win in the No Le Hace Stakes on the main track at Retama Park and placed in seven turf stakes, including the Crown Royal American Turf (G3) at Churchill Downs and the John B. Connally Breeders’ Cup Turf at Sam Houston Race Park. He retired with earnings of $280,645. A son of Dynaformer, Dynameaux is out of the winning
Alysheba mare Moving Picture, who is the dam of three other stakes performers. Among Moving Picture’s foals are Grade 2 winner Wesley, Grade 2-placed Cloakof Vagueness and fellow Texas stallion Silent Picture, a stakes-placed son of Grand Slam who still stands at Key to the Hills Farm. “Bred and suited to run classic distances, Dynameaux is a hard-knocking, sound son of Dynaformer,” said Ford, who also stands the Maria’s Mon stallion Gaff, Texas’ leading freshman sire in 2012 and leading second-crop stallion last year. For more information, call (830) 491-1412 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Calhoun, Robideaux and Proud Spell Join Fair Grounds Hall of Fame horsemen.” A native of Iowa, Louisiana, Robideaux, 80, saddled his first horse at Fair Grounds in 1961 and his last one in 2012. The highlight of his career came when he saddled Ben Castleman’s My Charmer to win the 1972 Fair Grounds Oaks. My Charmer is best known as the dam of 1977 Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew. “I appreciate this very much,” said Robideaux, speaking over the phone from Bret Calhoun Louisiana Downs where he is currently serving as stall man. “I’ll be joining guys like Hal Bishop and Marion Van Berg. I was self-taught as a trainer, but those were the guys I looked up to when I first came around. I appreciate this very much. This really means a lot to me.” Also, three longtime veterans of the New Orleans press corps were inducted into the Fair Grounds Press Box Hall of Fame during the ceremonies. They were Glenn Gremillion, who ran the Fair Grounds television department for many years; A.J. Paretti, who called the charts at Fair Grounds for Daily Racing Form and later for Equibase; and longtime track photographer Lou Hodges Jr., who will be joining his late track photographer father Lou Hodges Sr. in the Press Box Hall of Fame.
Reed Palmer Photography/Churchill Downs
Brereton Jones’ Proud Spell, one of five fillies of recent vintage to have parlayed a win in the Fair Grounds Oaks to one in the Kentucky Oaks, was joined by trainers Bret Calhoun and Larry Robideaux Jr. in being inducted into the Fair Grounds Hall of Fame during ceremonies on March 12 at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots. Proud Spell, a Kentucky homebred daughter of Proud Citizen, accomplished her “Oaks Double” in 2008, the year before Dolphus Morrison’s Rachel Alexandra did the same thing on her way to eventual Horse of the Year honors. “We were absolutely ecstatic when they told us,” said Proud Spell’s trainer Larry Jones when asked about his and his wife Cindy’s reaction. “When we called ‘Brere’ and told him and Libby [Brereton Jones’ wife], they were just tickled pink.” Calhoun, 49, born in Dallas but now a resident of New Orleans, has been training horses for two decades. The highlight of his career to date was winning two Breeders’ Cup races in 2010—the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1) with Martin Racing Stable and Dan Morgan’s Dubai Majesty and the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G2) with Carl Moore’s Chamberlain Bridge. “To tell the truth, I never even thought about this until they told me,” Calhoun said. “I was really surprised and shocked. Obviously, it’s a great honor. When I look at the list of trainers already in there, all I can say is that I’ll be joining some really great people and some really great
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Lone Star Park Announces 2014 Stakes Schedule
Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie announced the track’s spring Thoroughbred season stakes schedule featuring 11 stakes, including two graded stakes, with purses totaling $1 million. The two premier events on the Lone Star stakes calendar are the Grade 3, $200,000 Texas Mile for 3-year-olds and up to be run Saturday, April 26, and the Grade 3, $200,000 Lone Star Park Handicap for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/16 miles to be run Monday, May 26 (Memorial Day). “We are very pleased to continue to offer an exciting stakes schedule in 2014 that ensures our overnight purse levels are maintained while continuing to offer our traditional graded stakes races,” said Lone Star Park President and General Manager Scott Wells. New this year will be the $50,000 Wayne Hanks Memorial Stakes to be run on Saturday, April 12. The race was formerly run as the JEH Stallion Station Stakes and is named after the longtime Grand Prairie Sports Facilities and Development Corporation member. Hanks passed away in October 2012. Texas-breds and Fasig-Tipton Texas sale graduates will be showcased in four stakes races Saturday, July 12, in the 14th annual Stars of Texas Day. The program will be highlighted by two divisions of the $100,000estimated Texas Thoroughbred Association Sales Futurity (2-yearold fillies and colts and geldings going five furlongs), the $50,000 Assault Stakes (Texas-bred 3-year-olds and up at one mile) and the $50,000 Valor Farm Stakes (Texas-bred 3-year-old and up fillies and mares at six furlongs). The return of the Global Gaming Triple, a three-race series linking the Texas Mile, Lone Star Park Handicap and the $175,000 Governor’s Cup for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/8 miles at Remington Park in August, seeks to provide horsemen additional incentive to compete in all three stakes. 16
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Global Gaming Solutions, owner of both Lone Star Park and Remington Park, will offer a bonus to be split equally between the owner and trainer of the horse that accumulates the most points in the three stakes. A horse must compete in all three designated races to be eligible for bonus money, and points will be awarded to the Denis Blake first- through third-place finishers on a 5-3-1 basis. Lone Star also announced that the second phase of a two-year, $11 million renovation project will be completed in time for the Thoroughbred meet. The improvements include a new in-house television system, with enhanced graphics and new cameras, and remodeling of 21 group sales penthouse suites. Two larger group sales areas, the Alysheba Room and Dash for Cash Room, have also been renovated, and the former press box area has been converted to a special events room. The backside also received improvements with new paint and barn refurbishing, and the Bar & Book simulcast building has new signage and lighting to make it more visible to the heavily traveled Belt Line Road. The track’s toteboard also received a facelift. Lone Star has scheduled 50 live racing dates in 2014, the same as in 2013. The Thoroughbred season opens Thursday, April 10, and concludes Saturday, July 12. Live racing will be held four days a week with a post time of 6:35 p.m. CDT for Thursday, Friday and Saturday night programs (except Thursday, May 29, when there will be no live racing) and Sundays with a post time of 1:35 p.m. (except Sunday, April 13 and 20; June 22 and 29; and July 6). Live racing will be conducted Monday, May 26 (Memorial Day), with a first race post time of 1:35 p.m. A special twilight program will be held on Thursday, July 4 (Lone Stars & Stripes Fireworks Celebration), with a first race post time of 5 p.m. For more information, visit lonestarpark.com.
Record-breaking SUPER DERBY (G2) winner
MY PAL CHARLIE Louisiana s Champion Freshman Sire of 2013 by nearly $200,000
Now 13 Winners & 4 Stakes Horses including SAY CHARLIE,
winner of the $100,000 La. Stallion Stakes in his ﬁrst career start. MY PAL CHARLIE Indian Charlie - Shahalo, by Halo • $2,000 S&N
Inquiries to: Michele Rodriguez (985) 796-9955 • Mark Toothaker (859) 421-0151 Standing at: Elite Thoroughbreds • Folsom, LA • www.EliteThoroughbreds.com Lou Hodges Jr. photo
STATE ASSOCIATION NEWS
TEXAS THOROUGHBRED ASSOCIATION NEWS Big Savings Available for TTA Members on The Blood-Horse and Equine Equipment The Texas Thoroughbred Association is pleased to announce two new member discounts in partnership with The Blood-Horse and EquineSavings. As a current member of the TTA, you are eligible for: • A discounted $52 annual subscription to The Blood-Horse, the leading weekly Thoroughbred racing and breeding news and information magazine. • A 10 percent discount on all Eclipse Press products, available at shop.bloodhorse.com/collections/ all-books. If ordering by telephone, call The Blood-Horse customer service at (800) 866-2361 and ask for your Texas Thoroughbred Association member discount. If you renew your subscription by returning the renewal form, simply write in the price of $52—TTA Member Discount. If you are in the market to purchase equine equipment or supplies from Toro, Massey Ferguson, FarmPaint.com, Challenger or Exmark, TTA members can save up to 34 percent off MSRP through EquineSavings. To find out more, call (877) 905-0004 or go to equinesavings.com. We appreciate your participation in Texas racing and breeding and hope you will take advantage of this opportunity to enjoy these special discounts from The Blood-Horse and EquineSavings.
TTEF Scholarships Announced for 2014-15 The Texas Thoroughbred Educational Fund (TTEF) is pleased to announce the following recipients of scholarships for the 2014-15 school year: Todd Hartis of Dallas, son of TTA member Eileen Hartis, will be attending Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law; Victoria Spakes of Round Rock, daughter of TTA member Audrea Spakes, will be attending Sam Houston State University, studying animal science; and Brittnee Zamora of Powderly, daughter of TTA members Joe and Cindy Zamora, will be attending Texas A&M University, studying sports management. The TTEF also renewed scholarships for the following current recipients: Cameron Bragg of Mesquite, son of TTA member Steve Bragg, is a graphic design major at Louisiana State University; TTA member Breanna Bristol of Round Rock is a nursing student at Austin Community College; Michael Davidson of Arthur City, son of TTA members Brent and Colleen Davidson, is an animal science major at Texas A&M University; and Andrea Hartis of Fort Worth, the daughter of TTA member Eileen Hartis, is working toward her doctorate of physical therapy at the University of North Texas Health Science Center. The TTEF also funds an annual scholarship through the Texas 4-H Youth Development Foundation. Congratulations to all the recipients and many thanks to all our donors, most especially to Mr. Will Farish.
TTA Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet Set for June 14
Cast Your Vote for the 2013 Texas Champion Claimer
Voting for the 2013 Texas Champion Claimer Award is now open. Claiming horses fill the vast majority of race cards every day, but these hard workers rarely receive recognition, so the Texas Thoroughbred Association created the Texas Champion Claimer Award. The winning horse and his or her connections will be recognized alongside the other 2013 Texas Champions at the TTA Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet at Lone Star Park on June 14. The Texas Champion Claimer Award is restricted to Accredited Texas-breds who won at least three claiming or allowance/ optional claiming races at Texas racetracks last year. The winner of the Texas Champion Claimer Award will be determined by online voting. Only one vote will be counted per person and automated attempts to vote will be disallowed. Voting closes on Tuesday, April 15, at 5 p.m. Central. Results will be posted online the following week. Voting is available at texasthoroughbred.com. The 13 candidates for the award are: Betcho Bird in the Street Charley’s Mailman City Ordinance Final Time Hidden Ticket Legacy Flyer Midland Man N J’s Boy One True Sun Pharme’s Phire Sand Dusty Unbridled Eltempo
The Texas Thoroughbred Association Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet has been scheduled for Saturday, June 14, at Lone Star Park. The featured race that day will be the $50,000 Lane’s End Stallion Scholarship Stakes for Texas-bred fillies and mares at 7 ½ furlongs on the turf. Look for more information soon at texasthoroughbred.com.
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STATE ASSOCIATION NEWS
Texas Horsemen’s Partnership Announces 2014 Board of Directors Election Results The two partners in the Texas Horsemen’s Partnership LLP—the Texas Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (TTHBPA) and the Texas Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (THBPA)—recently concluded their annual board of directors elections.
TTHBPA members were selecting two owner and one trainer representatives. Steven Batchelder and Donna Keen were elected as owner representatives, and incumbent trainer W. Bret Calhoun was reelected in the trainer category to receive another term on the TTHBPA Board.
TTA Is Now On Twitter! The Texas Thoroughbred Association is now on Twitter. Follow us at twitter.com/ThoroughbredTX or @ThoroughbredTX. As always, our Facebook page is at facebook.com/texasthoroughbredassociation.
We have your money… You have our information! Is your name on this list of breeders and owners who have earned money through the Accredited Texas-Bred (ATB) Program? For various reasons, the TTA has been unable to pay the individuals listed below. Usually the problem is very simple to correct. Perhaps a transfer form was never completed when you purchased your money-earning Texas Thoroughbred, or we might need a copy of a Jockey Club certificate. Perhaps you have moved and forgotten to tell us. Please call the TTA’s Accreditation Department at 512.458.6133 so we can complete your paperwork…and so you can collect your ATB earnings! ALFONSO BALDERAS
MAGNOLIA RACING STABLE & JIM WARD
RENE FARAGOZA FLETCHER PROPERTIES INC. CHARLES HUKILL
JIM E. PALMER
for more, visit www.texasthoroughbred.com
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STATE ASSOCIATION NEWS
THOROUGHBRED RACING ASSOCIATION OF OKLAHOMA NEWS Featured TRAO Board Member – John Smicklas
It seems I have always loved horses. When I was five, growing up in Chicago, I was always excited to see the “rags and iron” man coming down the alley in his horse-drawn cart because I knew when he stopped, he would allow me to pet his old draft horse. What a wonderful smell. Then when I was about 12, I would go to the amusement park, Kiddie Land Park, and clean the pony stalls just to get free rides on the ponies. Later, after some good fortune, my 9-year-old son and I took up the game of polo. Of course, that meant a farm, a truck and a trailer, and quite a bit of tack. We had been buying our polo prospects from a rancher in Sheridan, Wyoming, who also raised and raced Thoroughbreds. One day he talked me into going partners on a horse called He’s My Friend, and he made me a heck of a deal. He’d put the horse up at no cost, and all I had to do was pay all the expenses. Later, as I grew wiser, I changed that horse’s name to He’s Not My Friend! Of course, that got me started in the racing business, and when I moved to Oklahoma in 1978, I became friends with Bob Moore, who kept my interest going. Sometime after Remington Park opened, I got a chance to buy a horse named No More Hard Times, and that was the beginning of 25 wonderful years. Six champions and more good times than any person deserves have brought my wife, Barbara, and me more happiness and joy than we ever expected. Serving the horse racing industry as a commissioner on the Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission for five years allowed me to give back to the industry for some of the wonderful times we had received from racing, and now I hope my time as a director for the Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma will allow me to give back a little more to the industry that has given us so much.
TRAO Welcomes New President The TRAO is pleased to announce that Dave Faulkner is the association’s new president. The owner/trainer directors are: Kari Craddock, Donnie K. Von Hemel, Joe Offolter, Randy Oberlander and Tim G. Williams. The new board members were seated on March 7. On behalf of the TRAO, we would like to express our gratitude to all candidates for their decision to participate in the election process and to represent the Thoroughbred horsemen of Oklahoma.
OTB Returns to Biltmore Hotel in OKC
Oklahoma City now has two yearround off-track betting locations with the re-opening of the OTB at the Biltmore Hotel. The Biltmore OTB had been closed under the previous owner, but new ownership has decided to re-open the location. The Thunder Roadhouse location also serves Oklahoma City.
TRAO Benevolence Changes The following guidelines have been established to outline the benefits and eligibility requirements for the benevolence program funded by the TRUST division of the Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma. These guidelines are as accurate as possible and are not the final disposition. FACTS: This is NOT an insurance program. It is an owner-funded assistance program. This program is NOT intended as a SUBSTITUTE for private insurance. All TRAO members are urged to carry insurance from a provider in case of catastrophic illness. The TRAO Benevolence Trust Committee has the FINAL determination of ALL claims filed. ELIGIBILITY: TRAO members (owners and trainers that meet the start requirement) and TRAO members’ employees (full-time employees include the following: assistant trainers, exercise personnel, foremen, grooms
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and hotwalkers of the current live meet who must be continuously employed by the TRAO member trainer for no less that 30 consecutive days) are eligible. The TRAO Benevolence Committee has the right to inspect payroll verification to ensure that employment guidelines have properly been met. To become eligible for benevolence assistance, the TRAO member must have three starts at the current live meet. Freelance exercise and pony personnel are NOT eligible for benevolence assistance. ALL members requesting benevolence assistance MUST fill out a benefits request form and provide an OHRC license. Benevolence benefits will be denied until these steps have been completed. All TRAO members’ employees requesting benevolence assistance must have their employer (trainer or assistant trainer) sign the benevolence request prior to the issue of benevolence assistance. The dependents of owner, trainer and assistant trainers under the age of 18 are eligible. BENEFIT LEVELS: • Medical: $2,500 per calendar year (includes RX)
STATE ASSOCIATION NEWS TRAO Benevolence Changes (cont.) • Dental: $1,000 per calendar year (all dental work) • Vision: $250 per calendar year • Emergency: Approved on individual case basis • Death: Approved on individual case basis MAXIMUM FAMILY BENEFIT PER CALENDAR YEAR IS $4,000: When using the TRAO’s partners for medical, dental or optical visits, members will not have an out-of-pocket expense until the maximum benefit assistance level is met. After the benevolence maximum is exhausted, the TRAO member or the TRAO member’s employee is solely responsible for the remaining balance. If you use the service(s) of your own private medical, dental or optical provider, you must submit original receipt(s) for reimbursement. Also, when submitting claims directly from the provider for payment, only invoices will be accepted. This means no explanation of benefits (EOB) or estimated payments. Original invoices must be submitted for payment. When submitting reimbursement requests for prescriptions, the original paid receipt must accompany the request in addition to the prescription stub that provides a description of the medication’s intended use. The TRAO will supply copies to the benevolence requester of the original receipt if requested. ALL benevolence requests must be made within 30 days after the close of the current live meet. ALL benevolence requests must be made within 60 days of the procedure. NOT ELIGIBLE FOR BENEVOLENCE ASSISTANCE: • Injury/Illness Derived from an Employment Situation (Anything associated with working) (includes RX) • Drug/Alcohol/Substance Abuse (includes RX) • Cosmetic Surgery (includes RX) • Sexual Enhancement (includes RX) • Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) (includes RX) Please contact the TRAO office with any questions at (405) 427-8753 or email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
TRAO Scholarship Program Information • Applicants must be a current-year licensed owner, trainer, assistant trainer or dependent of the aforementioned. • Dependents must be under the age of 20 at time of request. Owners, trainers or assistant trainers must be full-time residents of Oklahoma and attending an Oklahoma institution of higher education. • Dependents may attend an out-of state higher education institution, but the guardian licensee must meet the in-state domicile requirements. • Dependent applicants must provide his/her high school transcripts with application for scholarship assistance. • High school GPA of 2.0 or higher accepted (C average). • Lower GPA applicants must complete two full semesters and obtain a 2.0 GPA to become eligible for the TRAO programs. • Dependents must complete the ACT (or equivalent exam) for assistance. • TRAO Benevolence Board approves and/or denies all applicants. Scholarship Types: • General Scholarship: Five $1,500 scholarships will be made available on a first-come, first-approved basis. Each applicant will be eligible for a period no longer than eight semesters. • Oklahoma State University: One $2,000 annual contribution to the Oklahoma State University, School of Veterinary Medicine, General Scholarship Program. • Industry Education Scholarship: One $500 grant for racing industry representatives for continuing education. This grant program would be individually approved on a request basis. (One time grant per individual). To request an application or for more information, please contact Tammy Wright at (405) 427-8753 or email@example.com.
For more racing and breeding news across the entire region, go to: southernracehorse.com • facebook.com/southernracehorse or follow us on Twitter @SRacehorse for more, visit www.traoracing.com
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STATE ASSOCIATION NEWS
GEORGIA HORSE RACING COALITION NEWS The Georgia Horse Racing Coalition is off and running to bring the excitement and benefits of horse racing to Georgia. Studies show that the horse racing industry in Georgia could bring as much as $75 million annually in tax revenues and up to 15,000 jobs! Add in the tourism, business opportunities and agriculture growth, and the potential economic impact is nearly $1 billion and as many as 30,000 direct and indirect jobs. Georgia has a long tradition of horse racing, which is legal in the state. Each April, Georgia residents and visitors flock to the Atlanta Steeplechase near Rome and the Hawkinsville Harness Festival in South Georgia. Each event has taken place annually for almost 50 years, and the City of Hawkinsville owns the track and training facility where the harness racing takes place. While Georgia does permit some forms of gaming, i.e. the lottery to raise funds for education, our current laws block pari-mutuel wagering, making the sport of horse racing unprofitable in Georgia. The state is not taking advantage of the tax revenues and employment opportunities that would be created by the horse racing industry and pari-mutuel wagering. Join us as we work with our state leaders to pass legislation that would allow horse racing in Georgia and make a run for the winner’s circle. Please contact your state TRAO Benevolence Changes legislators and help us bring horse racing, jobs and other economic benefits to Georgia. You can find a link to your legislators on our website at gahorseracing.org. About Us The Georgia Horse Racing Coalition is a group of leading business and civic leaders who are dedicated to bringing first-class horse racing to Georgia who see the value that pari-mutuel wagering and the horse racing industry could bring to Georgia through jobs, tax revenue and tourism. Our Mission Our mission is to work with our state leaders to pass legislation allowing pari-mutuel wagering in Georgia in order to encourage and support a statewide horse racing industry that will bring jobs, tax revenues and tourism to our communities. Board of Directors Chairman: Carl Bouckaert, Founder and Owner of Beaulieu Group LLC; Two-Time Olympic Equestrian; MFH of Bear Creek Hounds President: Dean Reeves, Owner of Reeves Thoroughbred Racing and Breeders’ Cup Classic Winner Mucho Macho
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Man; CEO of Reeves Contracting VP/Treasurer: Jack Damico, Partner, Matson Driscoll & Damico; The Posse Racing Stable - General Manager/Owner VP/Secretary: Tom Schulte, Senior Vice President, Dominion Benefits Executive Director: Steven Crayne, Founder & Owner of Starting Gate Marketing LLC The Economic Impact of Horse Racing on Georgia An economic impact study by The Public Performance and Management Group at the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at Georgia State University reports that legalizing pari-mutuel wagering would produce a broad range of economic benefits for our state. The study shows that horse racing would bring: • Increased State Tax Revenues: A cautious estimate of the impact on state coffers is approximately $50 million annually, which is the amount received by states that allow pari-mutuel wagering such as Kentucky and Louisiana. • A Larger, More Robust Statewide Equine Industry: The equine industry, with its support businesses (feed production, training, farriers, veterinary services, equine products, etc.) would bring jobs to rural areas of the state where unemployment rates are high. • Increased Tourism: Horse racing would enhance Georgia as a destination state, adding yet another activity to our state’s portfolio of tourism attractions. Georgia currently has an equine industry of nearly 180,000 horses, and while horse racing—harness racing and steeplechasing—now exists in Georgia, the state does not take advantage of the tax revenues that pari-mutuel wagering would produce. The study says that such revenues would likely be significant. By allowing pari-mutuel wagering, Georgia would be growing an industry that is already well established. Unlike other sports, such as pro football, baseball or basketball, where taxpayers are expected to underwrite the costs of the arena or stadium, tracks in Georgia would be built by private investors. Horse racing in Georgia would be self-sustaining. Contact Us You can find the Georgia Horse Racing Coalition online at gahorseracing.org, on Facebook at facebook.com/ gahorseracing and on Twitter by following @GAHorseRacing.
STATE ASSOCIATION NEWS
SOUTH CAROLINA THOROUGHBRED OWNERS AND BREEDERS ASSOCIATION NEWS About the SCTOBA The South Carolina Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association’s mission is to promote the Thoroughbred industry in our state and throughout the region. The SCTOBA works to create awareness of the tremendous economic impact the Thoroughbred industry has in our state. Our organization is an advocate for the positive aspects of the Thoroughbred business: breeding, training and racing. We also provide leadership and solutions to the challenges presented by the Thoroughbred business. Through fun, fellowship and education, the SCTOBA looks to improve the breed in South Carolina and encourage Thoroughbred ownership. We invite you to join us in this endeavor.
President: Lee Christian Vice Presidents: Donna Freyer, Deborah McCutchen, Kelly Murphy Secretary: Wylie Perkins Treasurer: Gwen Christian Directors: Donald Baker, Webb Carroll, Kip Elser, Cary Frommer, Ted Hoover, Dean Keller, Wilhelmina McEwan, Mary Quarles, Doris Rabon, Jack Sadler, Rich Scelfo, Franklin G. (Goree) Smith, Madelon Wallace Contact Us South Carolina Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association P.O. Box 12850, Charleston, SC 29422 firstname.lastname@example.org • sctoba.org
Aunt Ellipsis, Elevated Capture South Carolina Residency Stakes A stakes win is a stakes win, even if it’s delayed by a few months. In the $75,000 Christopher Elser Memorial Stakes for colts Such was the case for the South Carolina residency stakes at Parx and geldings, trainer Phil Schoenthal swept the exacta with the Racing near Philadelphia, which were held February 8 after odds-on favored entry of Elevated and Sonny Inspired. At the originally being scheduled for November 17. The races were wire it was Elevated, ridden by Frankie Pennington, nosing out rescheduled twice due to quarantine restrictions at Parx Racing after a Sonny Inspired and jockey Stevica Djuric in a time of 1:16.48. It horse on the grounds tested positive for equine herpesvirus. was also an exacta for owner D. Hatman Thoroughbreds, Operated by the South Carolina Thoroughbred Owners and Breed- which owns Elevated in partnership with Kingdom Bloodstock ers Association, the Inc. and is the sole owner of the runner-up. Both horses residency stakes were received early training at McCutchen Training Center in South restricted to horses Carolina. Bred in the Keywho spent at least 90 stone State by Nina days in South CaroGardner, Elevated was lina prior to June 30, making his 2014 debut 2013, and who were after a 2-year-old camnominated through paign that included the SCTOBA. NorEQUI-PHOTO maiden and allowance mally run for 2-yearAunt Ellipsis victories at Parx. The olds, these editions of Jump Start colt has the races were for 3-year-olds because of the delay. In the $75,000 Donna Freyer Stakes for fillies, Vince Campanella’s EQUI-PHOTO banked $126,780 in five starts. Aunt Ellipsis drew clear to a 3 ¾-length victory as the 2-5 favorite. Rid- Elevated (inside) Sonny Inspired just missed out on the victory but his effort is even den by Luis Hiraldo and trained by Keith LeBarron, the Pennsylvaniamore impressive considering the Artie Schiller gelding had run a game bred daughter of Successful Appeal ran 6 ½ furlongs in 1:17.54. The filly, who spent time at the Webb Carroll Training Center in second in a 1 1/16-mile allowance/optional claiming race at Laurel Park South Carolina, has blossomed in her five-race career at the Philadel- just three days earlier. Gold Square LLC’s Geaux Mets shipped in from Aqueduct in New phia-area track, where she has compiled a record of 5-2-3-0 with earnings of $98,680 after her first stakes victory. She made her debut in a York to take third. He was followed by Back Alley Ambush, Leet and $25,000 maiden claiming event in October at Parx and was haltered by Bright Skies. The third- through sixth-place finishers all prepped at Webb Carroll Training Center. Campanella from breeder Truxton Racing. The next renewal of the South Carolina residency stakes at Parx is Daniel Lopez’s homebred Chubbianna (Chime Bell Farm) finished a clear second with Ascoli Piceno Stables LLC’s Je Suis Enchantee (Cam- set for this fall. The $100 early bird nomination passed on January 15, den Training Center) in third. Danees Do Be Do (Elloree Training and the $200 regular nomination is due by June 30. The 90-day South Center), Happy Recap (Webb Carroll Training Center) and All About Carolina residency also must be completed by June 30. For more information, go to sctoba.org. Abby (Glenview Farm) completed the field. Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 23
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Georgia artist Susan Easton Burns paints a piece of Kentucky Derby history By Bunny Hinzman 26
Southern Racehorse â€˘ MARCH/APRIL 2014
wanted it to be formal and creative. It was such a big commission, and I wanted to do a great job.” Churchill Downs’ two signature races always earn national recognition. Contested the day before the Derby, the Kentucky Oaks attracts the nation’s top fillies, and the day’s festivities honor breast cancer survivors. On this ladies’ day, spectators adorn themselves with pink and the Oaks victress is awarded a blanket of stargazer lilies. The Kentucky Derby’s storied 140-year history has made it America’s most-coveted racing event, and the garland of roses presented to the winner has made it known as
the “Run for the Roses.” With its unmistakableTwin Spires, Churchill Downs plays host to upward of 150,000 spectators on Derby Day. Easton Burns commented on this incredible display of Thor2014 oughbred racing: “We had the MAY 2, WNS DO L IL [painting] unveiling last month CHURCH and my family came for that. . Churchill Downs had night racing on the night of . . . . the unveiling, and I could tell that it is just going to be overwhelming; he Kentucky Derby annually marks the calendar on the first seeing a crowd of that many people will be overwhelming.” Saturday in May, and every year Churchill Downs searches for an The artist’s love of horses began at a young age, and her early artist to capture the iconic event. With the strokes of a brush, this passion has inspired many of her most beautiful pieces. artist must fully encapsulate the essence of the Kentucky Derby and its “A lot of young kids like to draw horses, and I never really grew out filly equivalent, the Kentucky Oaks, promoting and commemorating of that,” she said. North America’s greatest Thoroughbred contests for 3-year-olds. This Easton Burns’ experiences with horses taught her about their year, artist Susan Easton Burns of Douglasville, Georgia, was granted expressive attributes, and they continue to motivate her to use them as the commission for the official poster for the 140th renewal of the subjects. Though never owning horses as a child, the Georgia resident Kentucky Derby and the Kentucky Oaks. now lovingly cares for two retired eventing horses that her daughter Easton Burns’ pursuit of the vivid excitement of the Derby and rode in competition prior to heading off to college. Oaks began last year. These two distinct races demanded two distinct The artist’s intuitive paintings in acrylic allow the viewer to pieces of work. experience the spirit of her subjects in a fantastic, dreamlike man“I like to take a lot of time on my pieces because I like to pick away ner. By using her art to bring herself closer to nature and the subject’s at them, but I had a limit—I had a couple of months,” Easton Burns spirit, she creates a unique and powerful image. said. “Spontaneity and intuition are the two most important concepts I “The great challenge here was to create something that would try to convey in my art,” she explained. “The spontaneous underpaintspeak to everybody,” she continued. “The challenge is to do something ing gives way to an image that appears intuitively. creative with all the information; it’s been run so many times, so I “Every painting is an opportunity for me to reconnect with a more
KS A O Y K ENTUC
140t.h m, 2013
Y® UCKY DERB OF THE KENT OFFICIAL ART
Strea n Burns/Jett ©Susan Easto
Propes Design: Pat
Impact Printing: Vivid
Paper: TO COME
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 27
Susan Easton Burns
sity and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in art education from Daemon College in Buffalo, N.Y. She also minored in painting and
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intuitive part of myself,” she added. “Every viewer is given this opportunity to connect with their feelings as well.” Easton Burns devoted many years of her education to the study of art. She has done master’s work in painting at Buffalo State Univer-
ceramics at Mundelein College and Loyola University and painted with acclaimed watercolor artist Irving Shapiro in Chicago. She has also painted with Texas artist Sandi Grow Murray and instructed at the Art Institute in Atlanta. In addition to having various exhibitions over the past decade, Easton Burns has created collections for multiple Atlanta-based businesses, as well as a collection for the 2010 Atlanta Steeplechase. For more information about Easton Burns and her art, go to susaneastonburns.com. The Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks posters and other collectibles may be purchased at derbyartgifts.com or by calling (502) 744-6565. H Georgia resident Bunny Hinzman, 17, writes for International Racehorse Magazine, and her work has been published in Keeneland magazine. She also writes for The Jockey Club’s website America’s Best Racing and on her own website, Bits N’ Bunny, at bitsnbunny.com. Her article “The Lasix Legacy” received a final nomination and honorable mention from Team Valor International’s 2012 Stanley Bergstein Award. Along with writing, she is an equine artist and will be pursuing a degree in studio art.
Where Real Consignors and Real Buyers Come Together! NEWS FLASH
After a hugely successful Consignor Select Yearling Sale, featuring a $140,000 sale-topper, Equine Sales Company is proud to announce our inaugural 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale at our state-of-the-art sales facility in Opelousas, Louisiana!
LA-bred Vicar’s in Trouble, an $8,000 graduate of our Inaugural Yearling Sale, wins the Grade 3, $200,000 Lecomte Stakes by daylight and is now on the trail to the Kentucky Derby!
Auction: Monday, April 28, 2014 at 10 a.m. Breeze Show: Saturday, April 26, 2014 at 10 a.m.
Also accepting and selling horses of racing age Now taking supplements!
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Dreaming of Louisville Regional horses are aiming for the Twin Spires of Churchill Downs
By Denis Blake
Southern Racehorse â€˘ MARCH/APRIL 2014
t wasn’t long ago when the only wagers available on the Kentucky second crop of emerging stallion Into Mischief, who stands at Derby were the age-old win, place and show bets. Slowly change Spendthrift Farm in Kentucky, but he didn’t even bring his sire’s came. An exacta was offered, then a trifecta, and now there is a stud fee when he sold for just $8,000 at the Equine Sales Company’s veritable smorgasbord inaugural yearling sale of ways to get action on in September 2012. the Run for the Roses The bidders in at Churchill Downs. Opelousas that day can One of those relatively perhaps be forgiven for new wagers is the Oaks/ passing on Vicar’s in Derby Double, which Trouble, as Into Misas you might have chief ’s first crop was guessed from its name, just hitting the track challenges handicapand his leading runner, pers to select the winlast year’s Santa Anita ners of the $1 million Derby (G1) and BreedKentucky Oaks (G1) ers’ Cup Dirt Mile on May 2 and $2 mil(G1) winner Goldenlion Kentucky Derby cents, had just made (G1) on May 3. With his maiden-breaklarge fields virtually ing debut three days Steve Queen guaranteed in both before the sale. Vicar’s in Trouble is looking to become just the third races, that challenge is And while Vicar’s Louisiana-bred to ever run in the Kentucky Derby. often rewarded with a in Trouble’s young stout payout, like the $1,973.40 windfall for a $2 wager in 2005. This dam, the Vicar mare Vibrant, sported a solid race record and had year, a pair of horses from the southern region is in the mix as the produced a good multiple winner from two starters, it would be Texas-bred filly Fiftyshadesofgold and Louisiana-bred colt Vicar’s difficult to see Kentucky Derby written on that catalogue page. in Trouble are looking to make history in Louisville and beat the So the colt, who was consigned by Mark Toothaker, agent for odds. Spendthrift, sold for the price of a decent used car to Clyde Taylor. Eight months later, the Louisiana-bred was back in the Looking for Trouble in the Derby sales ring at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic 2-year-olds in training sale A Louisiana-bred has never won the Kentucky Derby, although as part of the agency consignment of Pike Racing. This time he surprisingly, in the early days of the race, the winners included three brought $80,000 and went to Ken and Sarah Ramsey. The 2013 Tennessee-breds, a Missouri-bred and even a Montana-bred. And no Eclipse Award winners as Outstanding Owner and Outstanding horse bred in Louisiana has even entered the starting gate for the great Breeder put their new purchase in the barn of trainer Mike Maker. American race since Zarb’s Magic finished 13th in 1996. Prior to that, Vicar’s in Trouble showed talent right from the start, kicking off the only other horse from the Bayou State, Real Dare, ran in the 1982 his career with a third-place run against maiden special weight comedition and finished last in the field of 19. pany last October at Keeneland Race Course. He then announced This year, Louisiana-bred Vicar’s in Trouble established himself his return to his home state with a 13-length maiden victory at Fair as one of the early leaders of the 3-year-old class with an eye-catching Grounds in December before taking the Lecomte in his first start 6 ¾-length victory in the $200,000 Lecomte Stakes (G3) on January around two turns and first start against winners. 18 at Fair Grounds Race Course. The colt followed that up with a “It’s something you have to try at this point in the year with a third-place run in the $400,000 Risen Star Stakes (G2), also at Fair 3-year-old,” said Maker’s assistant Joe Sharp, whose wife, Rosie Grounds, and as of press time, his connections were contemplat- Napravnik, rode the Lecomte winner. “He’s never given us any reason ing the $1 million Louisiana Derby (G2) on March 29 at the New he wouldn’t go the distance. He’s naturally quick but he is very pliOrleans track. A solid performance there could punch his ticket to able and has a good brain. It seems like he can handle whatever you Kentucky, which would be an unexpected result for the horse that ask of him.” attracted only modest attention as a yearling. With just four starts under his belt, Vicar’s in Trouble has Bred by Spendthrift Farm LLC, Vicar’s in Trouble is from the already earned $188,900 and the respect that made him one of the Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 31
23 individual horses included in Pool 3 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager that closed on March 1. And he has a bright future ahead of him, whether he makes it to Churchill Downs on the first Saturday in May or not. Although not nominated to the Triple Crown, Doug Wall’s homebred Ibaka, an Oklahoma-bred gelding by Texas stallion Uncle Abbie of Key Ranch, could make a late appearance on the Kentucky Derby trail after consecutive wins at Sam Houston Race Park in the Jim’s Orbit division of the Texas Stallion Stakes and Texas Heritage Stakes against open company. His connections would have to put up a $6,000 late nomination to make him eligible for the Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes.
a scary trip turned into a nightmare when it was determined she suffered a broken shin and chipped knee in the roughly run race. She crossed the wire fourth and then was elevated to third after a disqualification in what would be her last race for six months while she healed from her injuries. But heal she did, as she made a triumphant return to the track on February 15 in the Two Altazano division of the Texas Stallion Stakes at Sam Houston Race Park and won the seven-furlong contest with ease under, coincidentally, Vicar’s in Trouble’s regular rider Rosie Napravnik. While Fiftyshadesofgold has brought increased notoriety to her sire, My Golden Song, her future accomplishments will come after the passing of her breeder and owner, Clarence Scharbauer Jr. The Texas icon, who also stood My Golden Song at his Valor Farm near Pilot Point, Texas, watched his filly win her latest race but died six days later at the age of 88 (see page 10). It’s a longshot for any filly to make it to the Kentucky Oaks, and even more so the winner’s circle with a garland of lilies draped over her neck. But if that should happen for Fiftyshadesofgold, it would put the famous blue-and-white Scharbauer silks in the Churchill Downs winner’s circle 27 years to the day after Alysheba, racing for Scharbauer’s wife, Dorothy, and daughter, Pam, won the 113th Kentucky Derby. Fiftyshadesofgold’s pedigree includes the Alydar mare Reed Palmer Photography Alysbelle, a full sister to Alysheba who Fiftyshadesofgold, shown here breaking her maiden at Lone Star Park, is out of the Texas-bred was a Grade 2 winner of more than Hadif mare Hadif Cat, whose third dam, Bel Sheba, produced 1988 Horse of the Year Alysheba. $350,000. And the Texas-bred might Fast Fifty not yet have shown her true talent, according to Calhoun. While Vicar’s in Trouble seems the best candidate among “It couldn’t have gone any better,” said the trainer of Fiftyshadesofcolts from the southern region to earn a trip to Churchill, Texas- gold’s comeback race at Sam Houston. “She closed just the way we bred Fiftyshadesofgold appears to be the flag bearer for the wanted and wasn’t used too hard. It was a nice test for stretching out fillies. Like Vicar’s in Trouble, Fiftyshadesofgold made it known and showed us she is screaming for two turns.” early in her career that she was loaded with talent, and she also Calhoun indicated that the $400,000 Fair Grounds Oaks (G2) on became one of the select few to be included in the Kentucky Oaks March 29 is the next target for Fiftyshadesofgold, and if all goes well, Future Wager pool. then it could be on to Louisville. The filly debuted at Lone Star Park last May and crushed a field Joining Fiftyshadesofgold on the list of nominees to the Kenof Texas-breds by 10 lengths. That was enough to give trainer tucky Oaks is Valene Farms’ Louisiana-bred Designer Legs, who was Bret Calhoun the confidence to jump her right into stakes declared the winner in the eventful Adirondack at Saratoga. She is company, and the gray filly unleashed an eight-length demolition working toward her first start of 2014 after ending last year with a of a solid field of runners in the $113,400 Debutante Stakes in seventh-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1). June at Churchill Downs. She looked primed to run her record to Westrock Stables LLC’s Oklahoma-bred Heykittykittykitty, a daugha perfect three-for-three as the odds-on favorite in the $200,000 ter of Tactical Cat who won a division of the Oklahoma Stallion Adirondack Stakes (G2) in August at Saratoga Race Course, but Stakes at Remington Park, was also nominated. H
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
Golden Missile – Pola, by Strawberry Road (Aus) Everybody’s going wild over GOING WILD! A $600,000 2-year-old in training purchase by Bob and Beverly Lewis and trained by D. Wayne Lukas, GOING WILD won six stakes in his career, banked more than $513,000 and raced until age 6! As a 3-year-old, he won the six-furlong San Miguel Stakes (with a 104 Beyer) and 1 1/8-mile Sham Stakes (defeating Kentucky Derby winner GIACOMO) at Santa Anita and also finished second in the Santa Catalina Stakes (G2). GOING WILD raced in the Kentucky Derby (G1) and Preakness Stakes (G1) pushing some of the fastest fractions ever set in those races. He earned a Ragozin number of 2 and had 15 races with a Beyer Figure between 100 and 115.
GOING WILD ran a quarter-mile mile in :21.38 in a six-furlong race, making him a prospective top Quarter Horse outcross. From a limited number of starters, GOING WILD is already the sire of two-time stakes-placed Vernissage and four winners from seven starters. “He’s a warrior. He’s a bulldog. He carries a lot of weight. If you were in a street fight, you’d want him. He’s kind of blue-collar. He shows up every time. He’s tough, not delicate. He’s one of those type that meets you at the door every morning and says, ‘Let’s do it again.’ He’s very competitive.” – D. Wayne Lukas
2014 FEE: $1,000 – LIVE FOAL
Inquiries to Denise Cope 600 North Shepard Rd. • El Reno, Oklahoma 73036 Phone: (405) 262-4668 • Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Accredited Oklahoma Stallion
Road to the Derby Cast of the Mine That Bird movie “50 to 1”
tours the region
Edited press release with photos courtesy Ten Furlongs LLC
The story of longshot Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird has been made into a major motion picture that is being gradually released across the region.
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
From left, Christian Kane as owner Mark Allen, Skeet Ulrich as trainer Bennie “Chip” Woolley Jr. and jockey Calvin Borel as himself.
The cast and filmmakers of “50 to 1” hit the road on March 17 in a rock-star style cross-country tour to promote the major motion picture’s release. The film, which was produced, directed and co-written by Jim Wilson, Academy Award-winning producer of “Dances with Wolves,” chronicles the story of New Mexico-based Mine That Bird, who won the Kentucky Derby as a 50-1 longshot. “We’re bringing ‘50 to 1’ to the people of America,” Wilson said. “The group will travel in a tour bus from New Mexico to Kentucky, making stops in cities and towns along the way, mirroring the trip racehorse Mine That Bird took on his way to the 2009 Kentucky Derby.” Cast members joining the tour include Skeet Ulrich (“Jericho” and “Scream”), Christian Kane (“Leverage” and “Friday Night Lights”), Todd Lowe (“True Blood” and “The Princess Diaries”) and Hugo Perez (“Machete” and “The Longshots”). Wilson and co-producer and co-writer Faith Conroy also will be on the tour, and the real Mine That Bird will make several special appearances. “When was the last time Hollywood’s leading men hopped on a bus and toured the country from town to town, introducing their film to the people of America?” Wilson asked. “It’s unprecedented.” “I’m extremely excited to hit the road with a film I’m very proud to be a part of,” Ulrich said. “It seems fitting we’d be selling our wares from a gypsy-like caravan, given the underdog nature of our story, and I’m hoping this journey answers three burning questions. One, are audiences tired of the blockbuster and ready to be uplifted by the values of hard work and integrity? Two, can we inspire our audiences to stick to their guns and do what they love at all costs? And three, does Christian snore louder than Todd?” “I’ve done tours before. I’m excited!” said Kane, an Oklahoma native and also a successful recording artist. “It’s old hat for me in the sense that when you love something so much, you will put 18 wheels and lives in motion just to bring it into town and say, ‘I hope you like this. I made this for you.’” Inspiration for the tour came during a brainstorming session by Wilson and Conroy. “I thought, why not meet the audience this movie is intended for, introduce them to the stars and shake their hands,” Wilson said. “It’s the audience that matters the most. It’s why we make these stories, to share them with the world.” “50 to 1” is based on the inspiring true story of Mine That Bird and the cowboy trainer and owners who became the ultimate underdogs in a showdown with the world’s racing elite at the Kentucky Derby. The film was shot in 40 locations across New Mexico, Kentucky and
California and will open theatrically in roll-out fashion beginning in New Mexico on March 21, followed by Texas and Louisiana on April 4, Oklahoma and Arkansas on April 11, Tennessee and Kentucky on April 18, and then future dates as the tour expands across the country. The tour mirrors not only the true story, but also the movie’s release, and will weave its way from town to town through the initial seven states. “This is just for starters,” Wilson said. “We have every intention of crisscrossing America, but it’s dependent on demand. If you want us to come visit your city, let us know.” Wilson won the Academy Award for Best Picture for “Dances with Wolves,” which he produced. Other producing credits include “The Bodyguard,” “Wyatt Earp,” “Swing Vote,” “Mr. Brooks” and “Message in a Bottle.” Wilson’s previous directing credits include “Head Above Water,” “Whirlygirl” and the critically acclaimed documentary about Hall of Fame jockey Laffit Pincay Jr., “Laffit—All About Winning.” Mine That Bird, a Kentucky-bred gelding by Birdstone, began his racing career in Canada, where he earned three stakes wins as a 2-yearold. After he was purchased by Mark Allen in the fall of that year, he finished last in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) to end his season. As a 3-year-old, he finished second in the Borderland Derby and fourth in the Sunland Derby in New Mexico for trainer Bennie “Chip” Woolley Jr. before heading to Churchill Downs. The horse made headlines before the Kentucky Derby, but mostly for Woolley’s decision to eschew air travel and haul the horse in a trailer for the 1,700-mile trip from New Mexico to Louisville, rather than for his race record. Running for Allen’s Double Eagle Ranch Inc. and Dr. Leonard Blach’s Buena Suerte Equine, Mine That Bird was 19th and last early in the 1 1/4-mile classic before storming home to a 6 3/4-length win under Calvin Borel, who is also featured in the movie. Mine That Bird continued his run for the Triple Crown that year, finishing second in the Preakness Stakes and third in the Belmont Stakes. He amassed $2,228,637 in earnings but never won another race in nine starts after his Derby win. Mine That Bird was retired from racing in November 2010 and currently lives with his owners in Roswell, New Mexico. To view the complete tour schedule and get more information about the movie, go to 50to1themovie.com. H
Mine That Bird never won another race after the Kentucky Derby, but his story still resonates with owners and trainers
and proves that just about anything can happen in horse racing.
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5B So RH_Layout 1 3/12/14 10:34 AM Page 1
Look for the 5 B Farm Consignment at Equine Sales of Louisiana Two-Year-Olds In Training Sale April 26-28, Opelousas, Louisiana Bella Rae Rae filly by Forefathers-Kiss N Make Up by Private Terms Half-sister to Earlybird Road by mult. G2 placed winner Forefathers, now with a stakes placed winner in his first crop.
Big Top Dollar filly by Big Top Cat-Rosehearty, by Rahy Full-sister to ‘13 juv. SW LEXI’S LOVE by Big Top Cat, sire of TOP CAT BOOGIE, LEXI’S LOVE, Courtesy Cat, etc.
Casual Class filly by Erlton-Rich and Classy, by You and I By 5xSW ERLTON, G3 placed, set NTR at Delaware Park. Her dam has 1 winner from 3 runners.
C C’s Wild Fire filly by Choosing Choice-Bed A Fire, by Red Attack Full-sister to Fiery Choice by CHOOSING CHOICE, a SW grandson of Mr. Prospector. Sire of 5 stakes horses including CHOICE OF DREAMS.
Flashy Shoes filly by Lydgate-Intractabie, by Sandpit (BRZ) By G3SW LYDGATE, sire of 6 stakes horses incl. DO DAT BLUES, SWEET RUSTON, PALMY BAY, etc. Her half-brother sold for $125,000 at OBSAPR13
Hey Dawg colt by Interest Rate-Ginza Girl, by Fusaichi Pegasus First foal out of FUSAICHI PEGASUS daughter, Ginza Girl, by Interest Rate, a son of sire of sires STORM CAT.
filly by Doneraile Court-Precise filly by Intimidator-Streak of Definition, by Precise End Malagra, by Malagra First foal out of A half sister to SWs MR. Precise Definition. By KING REX, STREAK OF Mult. GSW DONERILE SMOKE. By Intimidator, COURT sire of sire of 8 stakes horses 71% winners, incl. WESTER31 SWs NATOR,
Great Redeemer: the Knife at the Gunfight Great Redeemer, with owner Dr. James A. Mohamed (left), takes a walk at Churchill Downs; he moved only slightly faster in the 1979 Kentucky Derby, finishing last and 25 lengths behind the next closest horse.
Texas-owned colt made a different kind of history in the Kentucky Derby â€˘ By Blinkers Off
Chutzpah: A Yiddish word applied to a man who kills his mother and father and throws himself on the mercy of the court because he is an orphan Beyond Chutzpah: The life, times and nerve of Dr. James A. Mohamed It was the year of Spectacular Bid, which is the way a lot of Kentuckians tell time on their personal calendars. He had won 10 straight races across two years as he headed into the 1979 Kentucky Derby. Months before the race, Dr. James A. Mohamed, a radiologist out of San Antonio, placed a strange ad in several Thoroughbred publications. Simply worded, it trumpeted the brash claim that Spectacular Bid could not possibly Southern Racehorse â€˘ MARCH/APRIL 2014 37
win the Kentucky Derby or any other Triple Crown race. In his own part-time publication he also offered to tell anyone who would write to him exactly why. A lot of people did. So many people wrote, in fact, that he began to believe what he had written. Since he actually owned a 3-year-old, named Great Redeemer, he reasoned, why couldn’t he win? And so begins a tale whose moral stands the test of time: Whether it’s in a bar or on a racetrack, never take a knife to a gunfight. A week before the Derby, a trainer actually named James James stopped by to see Louis Dolan, the racing secretary at Churchill Downs. He had been there before on the same mission. Old Double J told him in much the same tone of voice as the guy playing the warden used when telling Jimmy Cagney the governor is taking a long lunch and might not get back in time to sign your pardon: “Uh … uh … Mr. Dolan, I’m sorry to tell you this, but the man still wants to put his horse in the Kentucky Derby.” “Uh huh,” Dolan said. Dolan was sitting on what appeared to be a nice, neat nine-horse field. He had two super horses (Spectacular Bid and Flying Paster, a nine-time stakes winner from California), a reasonable consort of pretenders and a few confirmed losers who were well behaved enough not to make any problems. He also knew that old Double J trained Dr. Mohamed’s horse, a creature whose sole redeeming feature was that he had yet to bite either man or beast during any post parade. Dolan needed Great Redeemer in the Derby field about as much as Rudolph Nureyev needed a case of athlete’s foot. “Well, why don’t we just wait and see?” Dolan said. “You talk to the man and explain things. Let’s give him some time to be a little reasonable. After all, the colt has never won a race. These things generally have a way of working out.” As old Double J left the office, a funny thing happened at Churchill Downs. The earth shook, the heavens trembled and a baby monsoon beat horses bound for morning workouts by three furlongs. Who says the Lord doesn’t try to get our attention? 38
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The luxury suites that now bookend the famous Twin Spires of Churchill Downs are where many owners of today’s Kentucky Derby entrants watch the races, but Dr. Mohamed didn’t have a seat and instead watched from the rail.
That morning, shortly before final entries and the draw for post positions began, Mr. Dolan’s telephone rang. It was James James, and the immediate reaction that rocked the joint wasn’t thunder. It was the sound of James James’ voice dropping the other shoe: “The man is determined to run. I don’t know what else I can do.” “Call him back,” Dolan said, getting panicky. “Make another try to talk him out of this. PLEASE. Try to use logic.” Double J had some chance. Great Redeemer had raced six times
and lost six, and that was before he ran in the Derby Trial at “My jockey will ride anything,” Hee Haw told a reporter. Churchill, where he finished third in a field that might have had When Grover “Buddy” Delp, who trained Spectacular Bid, heard difficulty beating two large German shepherds. the details unfolding, he said, “Well, there are 999 ways to lose the In the previous six outings, he had been beaten by a combined total Derby. Maybe we just found another.” of a modest 84 1/2 lengths and once went off at a price of nearly 92-1 Delp may have been referring to genetics. Great Redeemer’s daddy, in a more-or-less live field of five horses. Holy Land, fell down in the 1970 Derby. Since the draw put Great “I cannot in all conscience saddle that horse for the Derby,” James Redeemer next to Spectacular Bid, it was fair to wonder whether his James said when he called back 20 minutes later. “I have resigned as old man had fallen to his left or right. the trainer of Great Redeemer.” All week long, Dr. Mohamed got more attention than What followed is out of Abbott and Costello by way of Laurel and Spectacular Bid. He was the butt of every joke on the racetrack. Hardy. After the draw somebody asked Harry Meyerhoff, who owned “You have to have a licensed trainer,” the head steward said when Spectacular Bid, how he felt about being next to a maiden in the he called Dr. Mohamed. starting gate. “I know,” was the answer. “I wouldn’t know. It’s been “I am licensed in two states. I so long for me I don’t rememwill train him.” ber,” he said. Mohamed was told if he Dr. Mohamed arrived could produce a valid liand did about as much good Great Redeemer, the laughingstock of the 1979 Kentucky Derby, was cense, he would be licensed for his horse as a guy calllater sold by Dr. James Mohamed (who died in 2013) and went on to in Kentucky. That raised an ing room service for more ice win five times during a 58-race career, although his lifetime earnings of interesting point. For a time it on the Titanic. He saddled appeared as though Great ReGreat Redeemer for the Der$19,238 were not quite befitting a Derby starter. But after retiring from deemer might get to the finby, but he didn’t even have a the track, Great Redeemer did in fact redeem himself in another career. ish line before Dr. Mohamed seat to watch. He stood at the As told in a 1991 Sports Illustrated article by noted racing writer Bill got to Louisville. With half rail. Still, he never lost sight the Free World trying to get of his horse, who trailed by Nack, the Maryland-bred went on to win more than 100 blue ribbons to Churchill Downs for the so many lengths you couldn’t as a fox hunter and show horse and was thriving at the age of 15 when race, the doctor picked up the miss him. that story was published. He reportedly died in 2003 at the age of 27 phone and attempted to get a As expected, Spectacular Bid plane reservation. ran like hell and won easily. under the care of his show horse trainer. Turns out he was a winner He got one. To say Great Redeemer finafter all. To Atlanta. ished last is to understate what No trainer of a Kentucky happened. Spectacular Bid Derby horse—winner or beat him by 47 lengths. Lot o’ loser—has ever trained from the standby line at an airport, but Dr. Gold, ninth in the 10-horse field, was the only other colt in the same Mohamed was not easily discouraged. state as Great Redeemer, and he beat him by 25. When reached by phone in San Antonio, he said, “Tell them not to As Lot o’ Gold crossed the finish line, a gaggle of photographers worry. I’ll be there, and I’m really not even angry at James James for who had no idea there was even another horse still out there, somequitting. I understand. He just didn’t have enough faith.” where between the finish line and Paris, Kentucky, cut across the Meantime, yet another small matter remained. No Kentucky track toward the winner’s circle. Derby horse—winner or loser—ever had entered the starting Great Redeemer barely missed running two of them down. H gate without a jockey. Through the good offices of James James, Dr. Mohamed was put in touch with a jockey’s agent named Hee This article was originally published by Kentucky Haw Alby. Confidential (kentuckyconfidential.com) in 2011 Mr. Alby represented a rider named Richard DePass. When Alby called, Richard was sick in bed. and has been reprinted with permission from “You’re in the Derby,” Hee Haw said. “You will ride Great Redeemer.” John Scheinman, editor. “Uh huh,” DePass said and went back to sleep.
Finally a Winner
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NEW TO TEXAS FOR 2014! M AT T H E W S B U R G
Ghostzapper – Romantic Comedy,
The only graded stakes-winning son of champion GHOSTZAPPER in the region! • Bred by Adena Springs, MATTHEWSBURG was a top sprinter who won the Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Sprint Stakes by daylight and placed in three other stakes. • His sire, Horse of the Year GHOSTZAPPER, was one of the fastest horses in recent memory and had brilliant speed – 6 ½ furlongs in 1:14.72, 1 mile in 1:33.29 and 1 ¼ miles in 1:59.02 in the Breeders’ Cup Classic! MATTHEWSBURG is a top son of GHOSTZAPPER, who from only five crops to race has already sired the earners of more than $25 million. • MATTHEWSBURG’s dam, the stakes-placed A.P. Indy mare Romantic Comedy, is a full sister to five-time stakes winner INDY WIND. If you are looking for speed, look at MATTHEWSBURG! 2014 Fee: $2,500 LIVE FOAL SWIFTRUN THOROUGHBREDS Bulverde, Texas Inquiries to Dale Swift (901) 487-1086 or email@example.com
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Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 41
A look back at the 20 stakes run during the Sam Houston Race Park meet By Denis Blake • Photos by Coady Photography The stakes schedule at Sam Houston Race Park, which wrapped up its 32-day Thoroughbred meet on March 11, is always among the most varied in the region. The 20 stakes included the richest Thoroughbred event in Texas, the $400,000 Houston Ladies Classic, and the state’s only graded race on turf, the Grade 3, $200,000 John B. Connally Turf Cup, plus a full slate of offerings for Texas-bred and Texas-sired runners at a variety of distances on both turf and dirt. The diverse schedule attracted its share of horses and horsemen from beyond the borders of Texas. As they have been doing around the country, Eclipse Award-winning owners and breeders Ken and Sarah Ramsey added to their win total with two stakes wins at Sam Houston with progeny of their leading stallion Kitten’s Joy. The $100,000 Maxxam Gold Cup featured the first Sam Houston starter for Eclipse Award-winning trainer Todd Pletcher, and his trainee Red Rifle romped to victory in a 1 1/8-mile track record time of 1:48.73. On the track’s biggest night of racing, three-time graded stakes winner Rose to Gold scored a mild upset in the Houston Ladies Classic and the Ramseys’ Grade 1 winner Admiral Kitten closed with a rush to take the Connally Cup. Local horses also held their own against open company, and the only multiple stakes winners during the meet were sired by Texas stallions: three-time stakes winner Triumph and Song, a Texas-bred by My Golden Song; two-time stakes winner Ibaka, an Oklahoma-bred by Uncle Abbie; and Quiet Acceleration, a Texas-bred by Silent Picture. Those three horses kick off our recap of the Sam Houston stakes.
TRIUMPH AND SONG
$50,000 Spirit of Texas Stakes 6 Furlongs • 1:10.06 • January 18 $50,000 Bucharest Stakes 5 Furlongs, Turf • :57.55 • February 8 $50,000 Sam Houston Sprint Cup (pictured) 6 Furlongs • 1:09.39 • February 22 5-year-old gelding by My Golden Song out of Coryphee, by Hadif Breeder: Victoria Ashford and Dr. Troy Carmichael (Texas) Owner: H and H Ranch Trainer: Karl Broberg • Jockey: Junior Chacaltana Sire My Golden Song stands in Texas at Valor Farm
$75,000 Texas Stallion Stakes (Jim’s Orbit Division) 7 Furlongs • 1:23.55 • February 15 $50,000 Texas Heritage Stakes (pictured) 1 Mile • 1:37.70 • March 1 3-year-old gelding by Uncle Abbie out of Synersis, by With Approval Breeder/Owner: Doug Wall (Oklahoma) Trainer: Bret Calhoun • Jockey: Rosie Napravnik, Lindey Wade Sire Uncle Abbie stands in Texas at Key Ranch
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$50,000 Richard King Stakes (pictured) 1 1/8 Miles, Turf • 1:52.69 • January 18 $50,000 Jersey Village Stakes 1 1/16 Miles, Turf • 1:43.27 • February 15 5-year-old gelding by Silent Picture out of Terrific Speed, by Senor Speedy Breeder/Owner/Trainer: Danny Pish (Texas) Jockey: Roman Chapa, Gerardo Mora Sire Silent Picture stands in Texas at Key to the Hills Farm
$50,000 Yellow Rose Stakes 6 Furlongs • 1:12.46 • January 17 6-year-old mare by Pulling Punches out of Slim’s Secret, by Desert Secret (Ire) Breeder/Owner: Judy Peek (Texas) Trainer: Kevin Peek • Jockey: Fabio Arguello Jr.
$50,000 Bara Lass Stakes 6 Furlongs • 1:11.93 • January 17 3-year-old filly by Too Much Bling out of Fast Find, by Mineshaft Breeder: W.S. Farish (Texas) Owner: Wayne Sanders and Larry Hirsch Trainer: Bret Calhoun • Jockey: Lindey Wade Sire Too Much Bling stands in Texas at Lane’s End Texas
SMILES GOLDEN SONG
$50,000 San Jacinto Stakes 1 1/16 Miles, Turf • 1:44.66 • January 17 5-year-old mare by My Golden Song out of Texas Smile, by Smile Breeder/Owner: Sylvia Baird (Texas) Trainer: Larry Stroope • Jockey: David Cabrera Sire My Golden Song stands in Texas at Valor Farm
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ACES N JACKS
$50,000 Groovy Stakes 6 Furlongs • 1:11.39 • January 18 3-year-old gelding by Jet Phone out of Pure Mischief, by Wayne’s Crane Breeder: Diamond D Ranch (Texas) Owner/Trainer: Caroline Dodwell Jockey: Larry Taylor Sire Jet Phone stands in Texas at Valor Farm
$50,000 Star of Texas Stakes 1 Mile • 1:39.46 • January 18 6-year-old gelding by Texas City out of Malaysian Air, by Mizzen Mast Breeder/Owner: Paul J. Rigali Jr. (Texas) Trainer: Allen Milligan • Jockey: Dakota Wood
SUM OF THE PARTS
$75,000 Champion Energy Services Stakes 5 Furlongs, Turf • :56.21 • January 25 5-year-old horse by Speightstown out of Enjoy the Moment, by Slew’s Royalty Breeder: Farfellow Farms Ltd. (Kentucky) Owner: William H. Lawrence and Klaravich Stables Inc. Trainer: Tom Amoss • Jockey: Rosie Napravnik
$200,000 John B. Connally Turf Cup (G3) 1 1/8 Miles, Turf • 1:49.80 • January 25 4-year-old colt by Kitten’s Joy out of Reachinforthestars, by Grand Slam Breeder/Owner: Ken and Sarah Ramsey (Kentucky) Trainer: Mike Maker • Jockey: Julien Leparoux
ROSE TO GOLD
$400,000 Houston Ladies Classic 1 1/16 Miles • 1:43.87 • January 25 4-year-old filly by Friends Lake out of Saucy, by Tabasco Cat Breeder: Joe Sr., Joe Jr., John and Karen Mulholland (Kentucky) Owner: Kathleen Amaya and Raffaele Centofanti Trainer: Sal Santoro • Jockey: Jesus Rios
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F J UNCLE VIC
$50,000 Allen’s Landing Stakes 7 Furlongs • 1:24.04 • January 25 3-year-old colt by Uncle Abbie out of Let Her Reign, by Rampage Breeder: Mr. & Mrs. Frank Prifitera (Texas) Owner: Johnny B. Evans and Terry Eoff Trainer: Terry Eoff • Jockey: Ernesto Valdez-Jiminez Sire Uncle Abbie stands in Texas at Key Ranch
$50,000 Tomball Stakes 1 1/16 Miles, Turf • 1:44.37 • February 1 6-year-old mare by Captain Countdown out of Ms. Winfrey, by Sunny’s Halo Breeder: Craig and Gwen Harrison (Texas) • Owner: Craig Harrison Trainer: Clifford Dodson • Jockey: Alfredo Contreras Sire Captain Countdown stands in Texas at Double S Thoroughbreds
$75,000 Texas Stallion Stakes (Two Altazano Division) 7 Furlongs • 1:23.13 • February 15 3-year-old filly by My Golden Song out of Hadif Cat, by Hadif Breeder/Owner: Clarence Scharbauer Jr. (Texas) Trainer: Bret Calhoun • Jockey: Rosie Napravnik Sire My Golden Song stands in Texas at Valor Farm
$50,000 Jersey Lilly Stakes 1 1/16 Miles, Turf • 1:45.57 • March 1 4-year-old filly by Kitten’s Joy out of Misinformer, by Dynaformer Breeder/Owner: Ken and Sarah Ramsey (Kentucky) Trainer: Mike Maker • Jockey: Rosie Napravnik
$100,000 Maxxam Gold Cup 1 1/8 Miles • 1:48.73 • March 1 4-year-old colt by Giant’s Causeway out of May Night, by Gulch Breeder: Twin Creeks Farm and Tom and Nancy Clark (Kentucky) Owner: WinStar Farm LLC and Twin Creeks Racing Stables LLC Trainer: Todd Pletcher • Jockey: Robby Albarado
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Eureka Thoroughbred Farm Proudly standing:
Pulpit • Arrested Dreams, by Dehere
Average earnings per starter of more than $53,000 with only four crops to race! ORATORY, a son of PULPIT, won the Grade 2 Peter Pan Stakes at Belmont Park in stakes-record time. As a stallion, ORATORY has already sired 14 stakes horses with progeny earnings of $5.6 million!
2014 Fee: $3,500/LFG ANGLIANA
Giant’s Causeway • Pratella, by Jade Hunter A durable and sound son of GIANT’S CAUSEWAY! ANGLIANA, a listed stakes winner and four-time
G2 and G3-placed runner, faced the starter 31 times and hit the board in 18 of those starts while racing until age 8 and earning nearly $400,000. His first crop of foals are now on the track!
2014 Fee: $1,500/LFG Eureka Thoroughbred Farm
Inquiries to Bill Tracy 6476 U.S. Highway 290 E. • Fredericksburg, Texas 78624 Phone: (830) 688-1709 Email: email@example.com Website www.eurekathoroughbreds.com
River Oaks Farms
STANDING FOUR OF THE TOP STALLIONS IN OKLAHOMA!
Maria’s Mon • True Flare, by Capote
Already the sire of eight stakes horses and the earners of $4.3 million in three crops to race! LATENT HEAT won the prestigious Malibu Stakes (G1) and San Carlos Handicap (G2) at Santa Anita, both at seven furlongs, and also placed in two other graded races going two turns. He will have a crop of 81 2-year-olds ready for the track in 2014!
2014 Fee: $3,500/LFG
READ THE FOOTNOTES Smoke Glacken • Baydon Belle, by Al Nasr (Fr) Easily the leading sire in Oklahoma in 2013 with progeny earnings of $2.6 million! READ THE FOOTNOTES, who captured the Remsen Stakes (G2), Nashua Stakes (G3) and Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) during his brilliant career, has sired 21 stakes horses, including G1 winner RIGHTLY SO, with average earnings per starter of $53,000!
2014 Fee: $3,500/LFG
Gone West • Tizso, by Cee’s Tizzy
A Grade 3 winner from one of the best female families of all-time! TIZ WEST proved himself as a racehorse with a Grade 3 win at Hollywood Park, and his pedigree is second-to-none. He is a half brother to Haskell Invitational (G1) winner and Belmont Stakes (G1) runner-up PAYNTER, and his dam is a full sister to Horse of the Year and two-time Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) winner TIZNOW and $2.8-million earner BUDROYALE! His first foals arrived in 2013 and look great!
2014 Fee: $2,000/LFG
CHITOZ Forest Wildcat • Wichitoz, by Affirmed A lightning-fast son of FOREST WILDCAT! CHITOZ was fast enough to set a 5 ½-furlong turf course record at Monmouth Park in a stakes and had the stamina to finish second by a neck in the Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Juvenile going 1 1/16 miles on the main track. His first foals are 3-year-olds of 2014 and they are already finding their way to the winner’s circle!
2014 Fee: $2,000/LFG
River Oaks Farms Inc.
3216 U.S. Hwy. 177 North • Sulphur, Oklahoma 73086 Inquiries to Lori or Francisco Bravo Phone: (940) 367-4380 or (940) 367-4457 • Fax: (580) 622-4411 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org • Website: www.riveroaksthoroughbreds.com
the gene genies
Genetic testing can help determine which runners will go the distance
• By Shelby O’Neill
DNA testing for horses can be used before a horse is even conceived to help match a mare and stallion or on young horses to project their class level on the track.
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
Before taking a trip to the betting window, handicappers use the past performances to examine any number of factors that could influence their bet, from workouts to jockey weights to track surfaces to broodmare sires. Despite what anyone says, picking winners at the track isn’t an exact science, but having as much information as possible at your disposal can definitely help put luck on your side. The same holds true in the breeding shed, where for centuries breeders have relied on an array of tools to concoct the exact alchemy for creating a perfect runner. These days, broodmare and stallion owners have an arsenal of statistics and information to work from, including race records, speed figures, auction history, physical appearance, progeny data and nicking. Thanks to continued innovation and advances in science and technology, horsemen can now add genetic testing to the list of tools that can assist in ferreting out which horses are destined for greatness and which ones are destined to become pasture ornamentation. But, of course, nothing is guaranteed in horse racing, and even a perfect physical specimen can fail on the racetrack due to improper training, injury or simply a lack of heart. Two of the preeminent companies involved in genetic testing for
Thoroughbreds are the New York-based ThoroughGen and the United Kingdom’s Thoroughbred Genetics. “We use genetics as a complement to the existing strategy,” said ThoroughGen’s Dr. Steve Tammariello, who also works as a molecular geneticist at Binghamton University, where he studies neurodegenerative diseases. “What we tell our clients is that genetics will never explain 100 percent if a horse is ‘good’ or ‘bad,’ but it’s one of the tools that can be used to give you a better bull’s-eye to target.”
one particular allele [gene variant] that allows black pigment to be formed and another gene that controls pigment deposition into the fur. Chocolate Labs have a different variant because they’re not producing black pigment, so it doesn’t matter whether they have the gene that deposits it or not. Yellow Labs can have the gene that produces that black pigment, but the other gene has a mutation that doesn’t allow them to deposit it onto fur, so one gene overrides the others. This is why black pigment appears on the noses of some yellow Labs. The same phenomenon occurs in all multicellular The Building Blocks organisms, including horses.” As a geneticist by day and a Thoroughbred owner by night, While geneticists have been able to isolate specific genes that Tammariello wondered if the genetics he studied at work could show a propensity for distance running or stud potential, this also be applied to improving both the probability of breeding a emerging field does still have limitations. winner and the integrity of the breed itself. “It can’t necessarily take into account the commerciality of “The first step was to breeding or purchase look at several hundred decisions,” Harrison horses of all breeds just said. “At the moment, to see what’s different it also doesn’t score for (genetically) between all such things as temperabreeds of horses,” he said. ment, will to win, etc. “When we figured out Ironically, the number what we really wanted to of veterinary or consee in Thoroughbreds, we formational factors that started looking into Thorcan be tested for are oughbreds and figuring pretty limited. It can’t out which (genes) were at the moment tell us Courtesy ThoroughGen bad and which were good. whether there will be Genetic testing will never be a guaranteed predictor of future success, but it can be a useful That’s how we came up pregnancy difficulties. tool in conjunction with other methods, and with our models.” In terms of mating and Dr. Steve Tammariello says it will become a more The study of genotypes purchasing animals, powerful tool as the technology progresses. (the genes within an orit can’t factor in the ganism) and phenotypes (the traits of an organism) has long been imponderables that all dealings with horses are beset with.” employed in the breeding of purebred dogs and other animals, so Two Applications its application to Thoroughbreds seemed a natural fit. After specific genes have been isolated, that knowledge can be ap“We started out applying DNA techniques that were being plied to help breeders and owners produce a racehorse that is more used in other forms of animal breeding,” said Dr. Steve Harrison, likely to fit their goals. The first application is in the breeding shed. founder and managing director of Thoroughbred Genetics. “Rath“For example, we help breeders to set out from the start to proer than being gene-specific tests, there were DNA assessments that duce a miler by helping to ensure that all of the appropriate buildallowed us to look at things such as the true inbreeding level of ing blocks from mare purchase to stallion selection are in place,” horses, which affects the breeding route that needs to be taken. Harrison said. “For a number of years, we have used a series of tests Our philosophy is to help owners and breeders buy or breed horses that enable us to categorize horses into stamina, precocity and relathat are more genetically adapted to doing a specific job and more tionship groupings. We also look at energy-release genes. Together genetically coordinated.” with inbreeding DNA assessments, these combinations of analyses According to Tammariello, a big factor in this is epistasis, in allow us to help select or breed more targeted and less genetically which one gene variant overrides another gene. As an example of variable individuals.” an epistatic interaction, he uses Labrador retrievers. Tammariello likens the potential of the genetically tested breed“Epistasis is really important in biological systems,” Tammariing model to extreme nicking. ello said. “When you look at black Labrador retrievers, they have
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 49
“Nicking is an incomplete assessment of the genetics of the situation,” he explained. “We’re taking the racing panel from the mare and the stallion, and because we know which variants give rise to better horses, instead of guessing, we actually know their genetics and are able to predict which stallions and mares have the best chance of producing a good runner.” In addition to its breeding crosses, ThoroughGen offers a racing panel, which typically is performed on weanlings and yearlings, particularly at sales. “We started by looking at about 600 horses, and 300 were graded stakes winners with Beyer Speed [Figures] above 100,” Tammariello said. “We compared those to horses bred similarly but having never gone above a peak Beyer of 79. Through that, we have a panel of genetic variants that we have found that significantly separate elite horses from non-elite horses. We’ve been following this for four years, and we’ve had quite a bit of success. Four of the horses that we’ve tested have won graded stakes, and two that we tested have won Breeders’ Cup races. We’re able to predict the class of racing about 70 percent of the time.” ThoroughGen’s tests for Thoroughbreds start at $175 per horse and include a discount if more than 50 horses are submitted for testing. The simple process involves submitting a form along with a hair sample to the company, and the results, which include a genetic screening and description of the horse’s genotypes, are emailed out from ThoroughGen within five to 10 business days. The stallion and breeding reports have a different cost structure that is available on a case-by-case basis. On the other side of the Atlantic, Thoroughbred Genetics’ offerings run the gamut from 55 GBP (about $90) for genetic database information to 380 GBP (about $620) for mare and sire genetic profiles, in addition to private fees for custom genetic testing.
Betting on Genetic Testing One breeder betting on genetic testing is Ellen Jackson of Victory Rose Thoroughbreds in Vacaville, California. “One of my clients told me about Dr. Tammariello, and I thought that it would be kind of fun to try,” Jackson said. “It’s been really interesting to see the pattern. It does appear that most of them do seem to train like the genes say. There’s lots more that goes into it, but it’s nice to know if the DNA is there.” Jackson has seen the proof firsthand in her runners like Olympic Jumble, a 3-year-old son of Olympio out of a Carson City mare who broke his maiden in his debut and ran third in a stakes during his juvenile campaign while running like the sprinter his test results proved him to be. She has also applied genetic testing in the stallion barn. “We tested all our stallions, and one of our stallions who had made $4.5 million turned out to be one of the lowest they’d ever tested,” she said. “By then, he was 16 or 17 years old and had been 50
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a complete failure at stud. Also, we bought a stallion this past year based on DNA, and his first crop is running like crazy.” As a strong proponent of genetic testing, Jackson has had Dr. Tammariello come speak to groups of local horsemen in California. She also pointed to the proliferation of testing in sale barns, such as an upcoming Australian sale that requires genetic testing to be available for all sale prospects. “Everybody’s going to be using it very soon,” she said. “It’s going to be just as important as nicking or bloodlines or anything we’ve accepted as the only way to breed. If you can play cards and stack your deck even 10 percent, which I think this does more than that, what a huge asset. With the amount of money we spend on racehorses between gestation and raising the foal to get them to the first race, you’ve easily got $20,000 in a horse, even if you don’t pay the stud fee. This can help so you don’t train three horses in order to get one winner.” For skeptics, Jackson offered a final piece of advice. “Genetic testing is not a gray area,” she said. “It’s what makes up their muscles, and what makes up their muscles is what they are.”
The Future Genetic testing has the potential to paint a brighter picture for both horsemen and the breed itself. First, the more data that is gathered for genetic testing, the better the comparison to give more accurate racing potential readings for horsemen. “One thing that we are moving toward is shifting genetic assessments to computer-based extrapolations based on accumulated DNA data,” Harrison said. “This will make it more financially viable to provide large amounts of cyber-genetic information at a very reasonable cost to owners and breeders. This information can then be utilized with other performance and pedigree data to incorporate into more complex probability models that can be accessed by clients.” As the amount of research into genetics increases, scientists will likely be able to offer even more data to horsemen. “Life is extraordinarily complex,” Tammariello said. “Genetics is so complex that this is basically at the tip of the iceberg. As we move forward with technology and more testing, we will be able to refine these products and these tests better and look at real epigenetic studies, which is the control of gene expression. The technology is almost here for us, but it will take a long time to sort it all out.” Tammariello also hopes that with time the Thoroughbred breed itself will be improved because of genetic testing. “My partners and I started into this because we were concerned with the glut of horses that are being produced,” he said. “There are a lot of substandard horses, and we don’t know what to do with them. What we want to see is improving the breed as a whole, so if people make smarter decisions that help a bit in producing good horses, they will be helping the good of the whole Thoroughbred breed.” H
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Howdy Partner Once banned, partnerships are now booming and helping bring in new owners Dede Biles/Aiken Standard
By Denis Blake
Cot Campbell, president of Dogwood Stable, has played a key role in the widespread acceptance of racing partnerships, and his successes include Preakness Stakes (G1) winner Summer Squall and Belmont Stakes (G1) winner Palace Malice (pictured).
Racing partnerships are so common today that it is hard to imagine a time when they did not exist and, in fact, were not permitted in many states. In recent years, horses like Funny Cide, Afleet Alex and Big Brown have attracted extraordinary media attention, both because of their exploits on the track and the unique stories of their ownership groups. While the sport of kings is certainly not a poor man’s game, the growth of racing partnerships has given the “little guy” hope that he or she can own a horse—or at least part of one—that can compete with the stereotypical millionaire owner. W. Cothran “Cot” Campbell, the president and founder of Aiken, South Carolina-based Dogwood Stable, is generally credited with putting together the first racing partnership in 1969, and he is still going strong 45 years after laying the foundation of today’s partnership model. Of course Campbell did not invent the concept of multiple owners, and even decades before, the sport’s heavyweights sometimes joined forces as partners. However, Campbell’s idea of putting together a group of owners, all strangers to one another, was quite different at the time. “I had bought a horse with a couple of friends, and then I thought the next time I do this, I’m going to form a limited partnership,” recalled Campbell, who has also penned a trio of racing books. “That had never been done in racing before, and there were certain rules that you could not have over four people owning a horse, so I did the first one with four and then moved up after that. I got lucky in 1971 and bought a very good filly, and she focused a lot of attention on this concept. The Wall Street Journal, Fortune and Forbes were writing about this unusual partnership to own a racehorse.” That very good filly was Mrs. Cornwallis, a multiple stakes winner who captured the Alcibiades Stakes at Keeneland Race Course. Since then, Dogwood Stable has campaigned more than 75 stakes winners, including 1990 Preakness Stakes (G1) hero Summer Squall, 1996 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) heroine and Eclipse Award winner Storm Song and last year’s Belmont Stakes (G1) winner Palace Malice. The racing industry now makes a concentrated effort to attract new owners, but Campbell’s concept was not an easy sell in the 1970s. “There was no open resistance, but it was a break with tradition, and some of the old guard in the game looked down their noses at it,” Campbell recalled about those early partnerships. “But some of the people who laughed at it then are now vigorously pursuing it and putting partnerships together.”
Putting It All Together
Just as you will never get a consensus from handicappers trying to pick the winner of any given race, you will not find agreement as to the best way to structure a partnership. However, Campbell said that it is possible to have too much of a good thing. “We have gone from having three or four partners all the way up to 40, which I did not like,” he said. “Summer Squall was owned by 28 people, but since then we are back down to four people with a general partnership with Dogwood.” Under Campbell’s structure, Dogwood retains 4 percent and the remainder is split among the four or sometimes eight partners. The average share with Dogwood can range from about $20,000 to $50,000, which equates to a horse valued in the neighborhood of $100,000 to $250,000. “That’s a range where you can get a good pedigree and a good individual,” Campbell said. 54
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New York-based West Point Thoroughbreds, which has campaigned six individual Grade 1 winners, generally breaks its partnerships into 10 percent increments on each horse, with an average investment of $10,000 to $40,000. Terry Finley, the president and founder of West Point, also said limiting the number of partners can help ensure a good experience for all. “It gets to be a challenge, especially if you get to the big races,” Finley explained about having too many partners. “We had a horse in the Blue Grass Stakes, and we just had too many people at Keeneland, so we wanted to get away from that and we’ve moved in the direction of Cot Campbell. We have maybe 12 to 14 people at the most, and that’s Courtesy Fred Taylor a manageable number. The tracks have gotten better at accepting the The distinctive Mojo Racing colors might not be seen aboard partnership model, so it’s gotten easier through the years.” a Kentucky Derby winner, but Taylor hopes to give partners the same thrill of winning while racing mostly in claiming Dogwood and West Point acquire the majority of their horses at public and allowance races in Texas and the surrounding states. auction, which creates transparency because investors know the actual purchase price of the horse. Some partnership groups allow owners to generation that horse racing covets. That’s where a group like Texas-based invest in a pool of horses, which can help spread the risk if a horse or two Mojo Racing Partners fits in with offerings in the neighborhood of $500 to $1,000. in the group gets injured or spends too much time watching from the “Some of my partners have been with other racing groups, and they rear of the field. paid as much as $30,000 for a pretty small percentage of a horse,” said However, Campbell and Finley both stressed that having partners on Fred Taylor, whose day job is as Senior Manager of Proactive Customer just a single horse strengthens the bond among that group of owners Service Communications for Southwest Airlines. and allows for a rich experience, if not financially, at least emotionally. When he’s not trying to keep Southwest at the top of the rankings Both also stressed the importance of honesty and integrity, especially in in customer satisfaction, Taylor is doing the same with his owners by a business that involves so much financial risk and offering an experience similar to the “big” ownerwhere a $100,000 purchase can turn into a $5,000 ship groups without the big price (not unlike what claimer almost in the blink of an eye. Southwest strives to do as an airline). “Obviously someone who’s looking to do this “They get other amenities and the horse might has got to have some discretionary funds,” Camprace at the premier meets at Gulfstream and Sarabell said. “We’ve always been very careful to rub toga, but for the money they pay, did they get the people’s noses in the fact that this is speculative. value out of it?” Taylor asked about some other “We have always been forthright about the partnerships. concept of selling it for what it is,” he added. “We Just as some travelers are willing to pay extra to don’t say that we know this horse is going to make sit in first class, others are looking to stretch those money because he’s by so and so; we go out of the dollars, and those are the ones who often find way to do the opposite, and I think people apprecivalue with Mojo and horses running in claiming ate that. We lay it all out on the line.” and allowance races in the region. Finley takes a similar approach at West Point, “I don’t make a living off this, so I don’t have which he started in the early 1990s and then saw a lot of overhead and it’s just the costs involved Courtesy Fred Taylor with the expenses, acquisition of the horse, etc.,” pick up steam later in that decade. He believes the Fred Taylor, founder of experience of his staff makes a big difference in the Taylor said. “We try to accomplish three things. Mojo Racing Partners, offers level of success and enjoyment for the partners. First, we want to have a competitive product so affordable options with an “We are getting people who have tried it themwhen the horse is on the track he has a chance of emphasis on a fun and selves with a horse for $50,000, and then they see educational ownership experience. having a top three finish. Second, we want to make they can get in with us on two or three really nice horses for the same it affordable. Most people in a Mojo group are trying the experience for money,” he said. “So instead of buying a $30,000 claimer and putting the first time. They want something low risk that gives them a taste. The $20,000 in the bank for expenses, they have a shot to get onto the big last thing, when you put those together you want to have fun.” stage with us.” While Taylor takes the business part of ownership seriously, from finding the right trainer to the right horse at the right price, he also stresses Letting the Little Guy Join In the importance of that third goal—fun. On the Mojo website you’ll find While Dogwood and West Point allow owners to get into the game all the standard disclaimers and warnings about the financial risks of for a relatively small investment compared to the cost of buying an racehorse ownership, mixed in with a bit of humor. One FAQ on the webelite yearling or 2-year-old at one of the nation’s premier sales, even at site says: Does Mojo buy a big barrel of Maker’s Mark bourbon with the the $10,000 or $20,000 price level, there are many potential own- winnings? (The answer, of course, is no.) ers who simply cannot afford to participate, especially the younger Like any owner, Taylor dreams of winning major stakes, and while the Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014 55
Sports talk radio personality Jim Rome, shown here congratulating Mike Smith after a victory aboard Mizdirection in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint, has turned into a big advocate for the sport after being involved in a partnership group. distinctive Mojo silks have yet to appear in any graded races, that’s not always what matters, he said. Taylor relayed the thoughts of one of his owners who has been in on several Mojo horses. “He said I don’t care what kind of race it is; when your horse has a chance to win at the top of the stretch, that’s the most exhilarating feeling you can have with tension and excitement all in one,” Taylor stated. “When the horse actually wins, that carries over and you never forget that feeling. The sport needs participants at every level; everyone can’t be a graded stakes winner. You can’t turn your head away from the claiming level part of the sport. That’s what the majority of races are.” Taylor said some Mojo partners have gone on to claim and breed their own horses, and he appreciates the chance to help the sport reach new owners. “The sport will die on the vine if we don’t have that,” he said. “We need to show people we have a product worth looking at and participating in.”
Buying into the Experience
From a purely financial perspective, investing in a racehorse might be compared to buying a penny stock and hoping that the company hits the jackpot. Clearly, there are safer options that guarantee a return on investment. However, unlike the stock market or just about any other investment, joining a racing partnership offers the chance for thrills and experiences that many people say just cannot be matched. “Going racing is much more than just watching an animal run around in a circle,” Campbell asserted. “There’s a certain amount of excitement, tradition and pageantry. We’ve said to people this is something that has three angles: first, it might make money, but don’t count on it; second, if it doesn’t make money, you are going to get a tax write off; and third, it can be a very exciting, colorful and glamorous venture.” One partnership group that has taken full advantage of the sport’s 56
Southern Racehorse • MARCH/APRIL 2014
prestige and glamour is California-based Little Red Feather Racing, which created one of racing’s best feel-good stories when it won the 2004 Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) with Singletary. It is still common on racing coverage or promotional pieces to see footage of the exuberant group of owners jumping up and down in a Lone Star Park suite and then packing the winner’s circle. “That was a life-changing experience for me and really put us on the map and allowed me to follow my dreams and goals,” said Billy Koch, the founder and managing partner of Little Red Feather. “I want to get more and more owners into the game, and that was my mandate to myself after that happened.” While the company is still searching for its next Singletary, it has made headlines because of its celebrity partners, including professional athletes like Tom Brady and hip-hop star Jay-Z. The company’s best publicity has probably come from popular sports talk show host Jim Rome, who after once questioning whether horse racing was even a sport, now talks frequently about what a great sport it is. That publicity helps not only Little Red Feather, but also racing in general. After catching the racing bug with Little Red Feather, Rome got even more involved in the sport with his ownership, as part of a partnership, of two-time Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1) winner Mizdirection. “Nothing this gal does should surprise me at this point, but I’m still stunned that she did it again,” Rome said after a second Breeders’ Cup win last year. “The Mizdirection experience is honestly one of the highlights of my entire life.” For a sport that for the most part has fallen off the radar screen of the general public and even many sports fans, the free publicity through Rome’s syndicated show, which reportedly spans 200 radio stations and reaches more than two million listeners, is invaluable. “We’ve been fortunate to have some high-profile clients, like Jim Rome who talks about it on the radio weekly, and we’ve had some hockey and football players,” said Koch, whose grandfather Howard W. Koch was a noted Hollywood producer and director. “When I was growing up and my grandfather was taking me to Hollywood Park, that’s why they called it Hollywood Park, because it was Hollywood,” he noted about the track that shut down last year. “And then you can go back to the days of Bing Crosby at Del Mar; it was all about celebrity. We kind of lost sight of that for a while.” No matter the amount of fame or fortune (or lack thereof) of a partner, communication is a vital part of the experience, and technology has made it far easier to keep partners updated. “I’d like to send a West Point shirt to the guy who invented email,” Finley said. “It’s been so helpful. I like to think we are pretty forwardthinking about communication and technology; everything is based on the objective of enhancing the ownership experience.” Many partnership groups have “members only” sections on their websites where partners can log in for updates, and many groups use YouTube to post videos of morning workouts while providing current updates through Facebook and Twitter. There are countless ways to structure partnerships and numerous strategies to find the next big horse, but it is clear that as ownership costs rise and the sport struggles to attract new owners, partnerships are vital to racing’s future. H
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