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11.30.13 Pulpit 11.30.13 The Wait A While 12.7.13 The Iron Horse 12.7.13 The Express 12.7.13 The Iron Lady 12.7.13 The Glass Slipper 12.7.13 The Rapid Transit 12.7.13 The Tiara 12.7.13 The Emerald 12.7.13 The Jewel 12.8.13 The Sunshine State 12.14.13 The Sugar Swirl(III) 12.15.13 The South Beach 12.21.13 The Dania Beach(III) 12.22.13 The Harlan’s Holiday 12.28.13 The El Prado 12.28.13 The Mr. Prospector(III) 12.29.13 The Ocala 1.1.14 The GP Derby 1.4.14 The Old Hat(III) 1.4.14 The Spectacular Bid 1.4.14 The Marshua’s River(III) 1.5.14 The Ginger Brew 1.11.14 The Fort Lauderdale(II) 1.11.14 The Hal’s Hope(III) 1.18.14 Sunshine Millions Classic 1.18.14 Sunshine Millions Distaff 1.18.14 Sunshine Millions Turf 1.18.14 Sunshine Millions F&M Turf 1.18.14 Sunshine Millions Sprint 1.18.14 Sunshine Millions F&M Sprint 1.19.14 The Kitten’s Joy 1.25.14 The Holy Bull(III) 1.25.14 The Forward Gal(II) 1.26.14 The Sweetest Chant 2.1.14 The Hutcheson(II) 2.1.14 The GP Turf Sprint 2.8.14 The Donn Handicap(I) 2.8.14 The GP Turf Handicap(I) 2.8.14 The Suwannee River(III) 2.8.14 The GP Sprint(III) 2.9.14 The Hurricane Bertie(III) 2.15.14 The Mac Diarmida(II) 2.15.14 The Very One(III) 2.16.14 The Sabin(III) 2.22.14 Besilu Stables FOY(II) 2.22.14 The Davona Dale(II) 2.22.14 The Canadian Turf(III) 2.23.14 The Ladies Turf Sprint 3.1.14 The Swale(III) 3.1.14 The Palm Beach(III) 3.2.14 The Herecomesthebride(III) 3.8.14 The GP Handicap(II) 3.15.14 The Honey Fox(II) 3.22.14 The Inside Information(II) 3.29.14 Besilu Stables Florida Derby(I) 3.29.14 The GP Oaks(II) 3.29.14 The Skip Away(III) 3.29.14 The Rampart(III) 3.29.14 The Appleton(III) 3.29.14 The Orchid(III) 3.29.14 The Pan American(II) 3.29.14 The Sir Shackleton




2yo F 2yo 3yo & up 3yo & up 3yo & up (F/M) 3yo & up (F/M) 3yo & up 3yo & up (F/M) 3yo & up 3yo & up 3yo & up (FLB) 3yo & up (F/M) 3yo & up (F/M) 2yo 3yo & up 3yo & up 3yo & up 3yo & up (F/M) (FLB) 3yo F 3yo 3yo 4yo & up (F/M) F 3yo 4yo & up 4yo & up 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 3yo 3yo F 3yo F 3yo 3yo 4yo & up 4yo & up 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 4yo & up (F/M) 3yo F 3yo 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 3yo 3yo F 3yo 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 4yo & up (F/M) 3yo F 3yo 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 4yo & up 4yo & up (F/M) 4yo & up 4yo & up

1 M (T) 1 M (T) 1 1/16 M 6F 1 1/16 M 7F 7F 1 1/16 M (T) 1 1/16 M (T) 1 1/8 M 7F 6F 7 1/2 F (T) 1 M (T) 1 1/16 M 1 M (T) 6F 1M 1M 6F 6F 1 1/16 M (T) 1 1/16 M (T) 1 1/16 M (T) 1M 1 1/8 M 1 1/8 M 1 1/8 M (T) 1 1/8 M (T) 6F 6F 1 1/16 M (T) 1 1/16 M 7F 1 M (T) 7F 5 F (T) 1 1/8 M 1 1/8 M (T) 1 1/8 M (T) 7F 6 1/2 F 1 3/8 M (T) 1 3/8 M (T) 1 1/16 M 1 1/16 M 1 1/16 M 1 M (T) 5 F (T) 7F 1 1/8 M (T) 1 1/8 M (T) 1M 1 M (T) 7F 1 1/8 M 1 1/8 M 1 3/16 M 1 1/8 M 1 M (T) 1 1/2 M (T) 1 1/2 M (T) 6 1/2 F

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volume 60/ # 4

winter 20 13


2 Message from the National HBPA

7 Industry News

12 HBPA News

14 Legislative Update



Research & Medication Update

18 Medication Committee Corner

20 2013-2014 Racing Schedule for North America


To Protect and To Serve

Affiliate News

Chaplaincy at racetracks helps backside workers—body, mind and soul






Bad Bugs and the Problem of Antimicrobial Resistance

Trainer Continuing Education Survey Results

First and Goal for Horse Racing’s International Riders

Seeking the Finish Line on Laminitis

Proper diagnosis, treatment and dosage can help prevent problems down the road

A breakdown of the responses to the National HBPA’s member survey about continuing education

How Donegal Racing founder Jerry Crawford and the National HBPA are working to achieve sports visas for international exercise riders

UC Davis continues to work on a possible solution for the deadly disease


hj in every issue

message from

the CEO

Dear Horsewomen and Horsemen of the National HBPA:

National HBPA 870 Corporate Drive Suite 300 Lexington, KY 40503 P(859) 259-0451 F(859) 259-0452

President/ Chairperson of the Board Robin Richards First Vice president Leroy Gessmann Secretary/ Treasurer Ron Maus Chief Executive Officer Phil Hanrahan Vice President Central Region Leroy Gessmann Vice President Eastern Region Randy Funkhouser Vice President Southern Region Rick Hiles Vice President Western Region Ron Maus


HJ Winter


In this issue of The Horsemen’s Journal starting on page 32, you will find the results of the trainer Continuing Education (CE) survey. I want to thank all of you who took the time to provide your answers to the survey, either online or by mailing us your completed survey. Although we only had approximately 50 people complete the CE survey, the results are enlightening. The current model rule (ARCI-008-020, A-4) requires four hours of CE per year. Very few states have adopted this model rule. With regard to CE topics, the survey question on horse care topics (bleeding/EIPH, lameness, nutrition and feeding and tying-up) covered the subjects people wanted to learn about. The results reinforce the fact that concern for the welfare of our horses is a high priority. Track surfaces were another topic many people wanted to learn more about. For those of you who attended the NHBPA Summer Convention, we had an excellent presentation on this topic by Javier Barajas (Canterbury Park), Irwin Driedger (Woodbine), Tommy McLaughlin (Tampa Bay Downs) and Dr. Mick Peterson (University of Maine, Racing Surfaces Testing Laboratory). Another question, which allowed people to select all the choices that applied, asked about how people wanted to receive CE. Nearly 80 percent of the respondents wanted to receive their CE via computer/online, while nearly 43 percent wanted to have their CE via a live instructor in a classroom setting. Perhaps the most interesting results related to the final question, which asked, “Should there be a per start minimum for the requirement of Continuing Education in a particular state? (For example, you must start six horses before you are required to take CE).” The concept behind the minimum starts requirement was to address those trainers who ship into a state just to run in one or two races a year. The vast majority of the responses (more than 89 percent) said there should not be a minimum number of starts requirement for CE; if you are training horses, you need to have CE. Medication issues continue to occupy our industry’s attention. The National Thoroughbred Racing Association recently sent a letter to all of the racing commissions in the United States urging the commissions to: (1) adopt the model rule with the list of 24 therapeutic medications; (2) adopt the Multiple Medication Violations (MMV) Penalty System model rule for medication; (3) adopt the model rule addressing restrictions on the use and administration of bleeder medications; and (4) support the mandatory accreditation of drug testing laboratories to ISO 17025 and Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC) standards. Conceptually, the NHBPA supports all of these programs. Our members are dedicated to the welfare of their horses and to maintaining the integrity of Thoroughbred racing. However, with regard to these four programs, the “devil is in the details” so to speak. The NHBPA is conducting a survey of racetrack veterinarians to determine and quantify what additional medications should be added to the list of 24 for the health and welfare of the horse. For the racetrack vets who are reading this column, if you have not completed the NHBPA’s medication survey yet, please contact me at and I will email the survey to you. The survey will only take you a couple of minutes to complete and you can email it back to me. The list of 24 therapeutic medications was adopted by the Association of Racing Commissioners International (RCI) as a “living document” allowing for the addition of medications. We intend to request additions to the list of 24 as soon as our survey is completed. We continue to maintain our position that medication regulations should be based on publically available, peer-reviewed scientific research. Only using such research can racing

commissions properly conclude what medications are appropriate for the horse and the industry. The NHBPA also intends to continue to work with the RCI and other industry organizations to have endogenous, dietary and environmental substances recognized and codified in the model rules. With regard to the MMV system, as noted in my last column, the RCI did accept several of the changes Dave Basler and the NHBPA’s Model Rules Committee requested. Several of the changes we wanted, such as adjustments to the Class B, C and D point values and adjustments to the expungement times for Class C and D violations, were not incorporated into the MMV model rule. We will continue to advocate for these changes and several other changes in order to have a more balanced rule that recognizes that, after due process, multiple violation offenders should be appropriately sanctioned. The RCI’s model rule regarding furosemide (Lasix/Salix) was recently adopted. In general, the NHBPA (although not all of our affiliates) concurs with this model rule. There have been some challenges in terms of implementing this model rule in certain locations, but for the most part the regulatory veterinarians have overcome these challenges and the issue of the regulation of furosemide has moved to the back burner (at least for now). The NHBPA supports the concept of national testing lab accreditation using the ISO 17025 standards as a base, augmented by the additional RMTC standards. One or two RMTC standards, in our opinion, need some clarification, but in general national standard accreditation is good for the integrity of racing. To the extent the adoption of the national standards is going to result in an increase in the testing cost per sample, the payment of these additional costs must be explored, defined and agreed to prior to adoption of the national testing standards. On a totally different subject, by the time you get this issue of The Horsemen’s Journal, the 2013 Claiming Crown will have taken place at Gulfstream Park. More than 270 trainers submitted their nominations. This year the Claiming Crown added an additional race, and thanks to the Florida HBPA, the total purse money was raised to $1 million. We are hoping to have full 14-horse fields for each race, which should make the event very attractive from a wagering point of view as well as from a spectator point of view. Look for a recap of the Claiming Crown in the next issue of the magazine. As always, if any of you are in Lexington, please stop by the NHBPA’s office. We welcome your comments, feedback and visits. May the Racing Gods smile on you, and may you have many visits to the winner’s circle.


Phil Hanrahan Chief Executive Officer

contributors Kimberley Brewer, DVM Abelardo Morales Briceño, DVM Brian W. Fitzgerald Kimberley French Craig McDougal Shelby O’Neill Aniceto Méndez Sánchez, DVM Heather Smith Thomas William Velie


National HBPA

Would Like To Thank Its Corporate

sponsors Affiliates Board of Directors - Affiliates Dr. David Harrington, Alabama J. Lloyd Yother, Arizona Linda Gaston, Arkansas David Milburn, Canada Randy Funkhouser, Charles Town Mark McGregor, Colorado Dave Brown, Finger Lakes Phil Combest, Florida Mark Buckley, Idaho Brian LaMew, Illinois Joe Davis, Indiana Leroy Gessmann, Iowa Rick Hiles, Kentucky Stanley Seelig, Louisiana George Kutlenios, Michigan Tom Metzen, Minnesota R.C. Forster, Montana John W. Baird, Mountaineer Park Todd Veerhusen, Nebraska Anthony Spadea, New England Tim Hamm, Ohio Bill Anderson, Oklahoma Sue Leslie, Ontario Steve Fisher, Oregon Tim Shea, Pennsylvania Robert Jeffries, Tampa Bay Downs Dr. Tommy Hays, Texas Horsemen’s Partnership, LLP Davis Ross, Virginia Ron Maus, Washington

The views expressed on these pages are those of the authors and/or advertisers, and they may or may not reflect the positions and/or beliefs of the National Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association, its officers, or Board of Directors. The Horsemen’s Journal, Volume 60 #4. Postal Information: The Horsemen’s Journal (ISSN 0018-5256) is published quarterly by the National Horsemen’s Administration Corporation, with publishing offices at P.O. Box 8645, Round Rock, TX 78683. Copyright 2013 all rights reserved. The Horsemen’s Journal is the official publication for members of the Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association, a representative association of Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse owners and trainers. HBPA is a non-profit 501(c)6 Kentucky corporation. Members receive The Horsemen’s Journal as a benefit of membership paid by the national office from affiliate dues. Annual non-member subscriptions are $14. Single-copy back issues, if available, are $7. Canadian subscribers add $6. All other

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subscriptions outside the U.S. add $20 payable in U. S. funds. To order reprints or subscriptions, call (866) 245-1711. The HBPA National Board of Directors has determined that the publication of this periodical is necessary in the transaction of the public business required of the association. Views and opinions expressed are those of the authors and/or advertisers and do not necessarily represent the opinion or policy of the publisher or HBPA board or staff. Query the editor prior to sending any manuscripts. Periodicals Postage Paid at Round Rock, Texas and additional mailing offices. CANADA POST: Publications mail agreement no. 41530527. Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to: P. O. Box 503, RPO West Beaver Creek, Richmond Hill, ON L4B 4R6. Postmaster: Send address changes to The Horsemen’s Journal, P.O. Box 911188, Lexington, KY 40591-1188.




industry news

hj news

Breeders’ Cup Handle and Attendance Increase

Total two-day common-pool handle for the November 1-2 race cards of the 30th Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Park was $160,704,877, representing an 11 percent increase over the 2012 figure of $144,272,332, Breeders’ Cup officials reported. Wagering on Saturday’s 12-race Breeders’ Cup card was $109,183,731, up 13 percent from the 2012 handle of $96,685,567. The on-track handle for the two days at Santa Anita was $21,043,110, a 2 percent increase over the $20,680,143 total for the 2012 event at the iconic Southern California racetrack. A crowd of 58,795 was on hand Saturday for the second day of the Breeders’ Cup, bringing the two-day total attendance to 94,628, up more than 5 percent from the 2012 two-day attendance of 89,742. Saturday’s crowd was 6.6 percent more than the 2012 Saturday crowd of 55,123. The two-day wagering total on the 14 Breeders’ Cup World Championship races was $136,539,014, a 7 percent increase over last year’s 15 Breeders’ Cup race total of $127,676,366.

“We enjoyed a spectacular two days of racing topped off by Mucho Macho Man’s thrilling victory in the Classic before a primetime television audience and courageous repeat performances by Wise Dan in the Mile, Groupie Doll in the Filly & Mare Sprint and Mizdirection in the Geico Turf Sprint,” said Breeders’ Cup President and CEO Craig Fravel. “We’re thrilled with the crowd over both days, strong wagering levels and our gracious hosts here at Santa Anita, Arcadia and the greater Los Angeles area.” Breeders’ Cup Two-Day Attendance and Handle (common-pool) history: Year Track Attendance Handle 2013 Santa Anita Park 94,628 $160,704,877 2012 Santa Anita Park 89,742 $144,272,332 2011 Churchill Downs 105,820 $161,512,867 2010 Churchill Downs 114,353 $173,857,697 2009 Santa Anita Park 96,496 $153,271,176 2008 Santa Anita Park 86,588 $155,740,328

Purses and Handle Rise in October, Nearly Even for Year to Date Equibase Company released its Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators through the end of October, and the figures show that both purses and handle for U.S. racing increased during the month despite a reduction in race days, and the year-to-date totals show small increases.

In October, $804,303,623 was wagered on U.S. racing, a significant jump of 8.3 percent from last year’s monthly total of $742,671,714. Purses ticked up slightly by 0.3 percent to $93,286,965 for the month, even though the number of race dates in October dropped to 409 from 434, a decrease of 5.8 percent. Purses for the year through October totaled $951,152,650, up 0.3 percent from last year, and wagering increased by 0.6 percent to $9,268,404,702 with a decrease in race days to 4,449 from 4,596, a drop of 3.2 percent.

The Jockey Club Announces Plan to Fund Baseline Concussion Tests for Jockeys The Jockey Club announced that it will fund baseline concussion testing for all jockeys who use the Jockey Health Information System (JHIS). Created in October 2008, the JHIS is a database that stores jockeys’ updated medical histories and enables emergency medical personnel at racetracks to instantly access that information in the event of injury. There is no cost for any racetrack or jockey to participate in the JHIS. It can be accessed via a new module of InCompass’ Race Track Operations system. “Baseline concussion testing has become an integral part of any safety regimen in professional and amateur sports alike,” said James L. Gagliano, president and chief operating officer of The Jockey Club. “The topic was addressed at the International Jockeys’ Health, Safety & Welfare Conference at Monmouth Park in September, and we’ve all read about the testing being done with football players and, most recently, NASCAR drivers. We are pleased to use the platform of the JHIS to offer this service to the riders.” “On behalf of the Jockeys’ Guild and its members, I want to truly thank The Jockey Club for its continued support for the welfare of riders,” said Terry Meyocks, national manager of the Jockeys’ Guild. “It is my hope that every rider

will take advantage of this opportunity, and we look forward to working with the tracks and riders to see that it is widely promoted.” The creation and development of the JHIS featured collaboration among InCompass, The Jockey Club Technology Services Inc., the Jockeys’ Guild, Keeneland and Dr. Barry Schumer, Keeneland’s medical director, who developed the original concept and consulted on the project. Keeneland is the only track in the country that requires jockeys to sign up for the JHIS. InCompass, a subsidiary of The Jockey Club, plans to acquire a package of the baseline concussion tests, which would be administered free of charge by a medical professional at each track if the rider agrees to enroll in JHIS. “This is a win-win situation for jockeys if ever there was one,” said Dr. Schumer, who has been associated with Keeneland for more than 30 years. “Baseline concussion testing is a crucial component that will help track medical personnel make appropriate return-to-ride assessments following head injuries. Storing this information securely in the jockey’s JHIS medical history makes it accessible whenever and wherever they ride and helps us protect our riders' immediate and long-term health and welfare.”



industry news The Jockey Club Releases 2012 Breeding Statistics, 2013 Report of Mares Bred The Jockey Club reported that 2,392 stallions covered 37,908 mares in North America during 2012, according to statistics compiled through September 9, 2013. These breedings have resulted in 22,001 live foals of 2013 being reported to The Jockey Club on Live Foal Reports received as of that same date. The Jockey Club estimates that the number of live foals reported so far is approximately 90 percent complete. The reporting of live foals of 2013 is down 2.2 percent from September of last year when The Jockey Club had received reports for 22,500 live foals of 2012. In addition to the 22,001 live foals of 2013 reported through September 9, The Jockey Club had also received 2,891 No Foal Reports for the 2013 foaling season. Ultimately, the 2013 registered foal crop is projected to reach 23,000. The number of stallions declined 8.7 percent from the number reported last year for 2011, while the number of mares bred decreased 4.8 percent from the 39,838 reported for 2011. Matt Iuliano, The Jockey Club’s executive vice president and executive director, stated that the breeding statistics are not a measurement of the live foals born in each state or province but are a count of live foals by conception area, regardless of where the foals were born. He also reiterated that the statistics should not be taken to represent the final fertility record of any single stallion or conception area. Kentucky annually leads all states and provinces in terms of Thoroughbred breeding activity. Kentucky-based stallions accounted for 41.1 percent of the mares reported bred in North America in 2012 and 48.8 percent of the live foals reported for 2013. The 15,569 mares reported bred to 249 Kentucky stallions in 2012 have produced 10,726 live foals, a 2.1 percent decrease on the 10,960 Kentuckysired live foals of 2012 reported last year. The number of mares reported bred to Kentucky stallions in 2012 declined 2.2 percent against the 15,918 reported for 2011 in September of last year. Among the 10 states and provinces in which stallions covered at least 1,000 mares in 2012, only Florida and New York stallions produced more live foals in 2013 than in 2012.

The Jockey Club also released Report of Mares Bred (RMB) statistics for the 2013 breeding season. Based on RMBs received through October 10, 2013, The Jockey Club reports that 1,698 stallions covered 34,174 mares in North America during 2013. The annual statistics represent approximately 90 percent of the mares that eventually will be reported as bred in 2013. According to historical trends, The Jockey Club expects to receive RMBs representing an additional 3,000 to 4,000 mares bred during the 2013 breeding season. The number of stallions declined 8.8 percent from the 1,861 reported in 2012, and the number of mares bred fell 3.4 percent from the 35,391 reported last year. The number of stallions covering 100 or more mares increased by one, from 87 in 2012 to 88 in 2013. These stallions accounted for a greater percentage of the total mares reported bred this year—34.0 percent of all mares bred in 2013 versus 31.9 percent of all mares bred in 2012 as reported last year. Further book size analysis shows a 2.9 percent increase in the number of mares bred to stallions with a book size of 100 or more in 2013 when compared to 2012; an 11.6 percent decrease in mares bred to stallions with a book size between 75 and 99; an 11.3 percent increase in mares bred to stallions with a book size between 50 and 74; a 15.9 percent decrease in mares bred to stallions with a book size between 25 and 49; and a 5.3 percent decrease in mares bred to stallions with a book size of fewer than 25. The stallion Into Mischief led all stallions with 210 mares bred in 2013. Rounding out the top five were Archarcharch, 187; Harlan’s Holiday, 187; Kitten’s Joy, 184; and Majestic Warrior, 176. During 2013, Kentucky’s 235 reported stallions covered 15,695 mares, or 45.9 percent of all of the mares reported bred in North America. The number of mares bred to Kentucky stallions increased 2.2 percent compared with the 15,361 reported last year. Of the top 10 states and provinces by number of mares reported bred in 2012, only Kentucky, Oklahoma and Texas stallions covered more mares in 2013 than in 2012. More information on both reports, including a breakdown by stallion, is available through the Publications and Resources link on The Jockey Club homepage at

OwnerView Launches Host Program to Assist Prospective Owners horsemans_journal_half_vert_Layout 1 10/2/2012 11:40 AM Page 1

To enhance the information available to prospective owners of Thoroughbred racehorses, OwnerView announced a new service called “OwnerView Host.” The free service will provide a further source of basic information for people interested in owning Thoroughbred racehorses, covering topics such as business plans, ownership options, licensing, costs and expenses, and aftercare. “There is a lot of information available to prospective owners before they hire a trainer or make that first horse purchase, and OwnerView hosts will help them digest many of the basics of owning Thoroughbred racehorses,” said Gary Falter, project manager for OwnerView. “We won’t offer specifics on the selection of agents, trainers and horses, but we will explain where to go, how to make contacts and what to do to become a Thoroughbred owner.” 8

HJ Winter


Anyone interested in using the OwnerView host service can fill out a form at available through the link, “Contact us to discuss your plans.” “When we receive a request, we will reply to the prospective owner to set up an initial discussion,” Falter said. “After the introductory contact, prospective owners will have the opportunity to speak to an OwnerView host who can walk them through ownership topics at and answer questions.” OwnerView was launched by The Jockey Club Information Systems Inc. and the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association in May 2012, in the wake of McKinsey & Company’s economic study of the sport that recommended a central resource that would encourage Thoroughbred ownership and provide accurate information about purchasing and owning a Thoroughbred. OwnerView includes information relevant to Thoroughbred owners, including information on trainers, racing syndicates, licensing, aftercare and state incentive programs. For more information, visit

James Hastie Named Executive Director of TAA The Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA) announced that it has hired James Hastie as the organization’s executive director, effective November 18. Mike Ziegler, who has served as the TAA’s executive director since March 2012, will remain with the organization through a transition period before returning full-time to his role as executive director of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Safety and Integrity Alliance. Hastie joins the TAA from Cazenovia, New York, and brings to the role 15 years of executive management, fundraising and communications experience. Most recently, he served as major gifts officer for the American Red Cross in Syracuse, New York, where his responsibilities included identification, cultivation, solicitation, stewardship and communications with major donors. He also held roles as interim chief development officer and public affairs specialist at the American Red Cross. His prior experience includes leadership roles at State University of New York, Zurich Rowing World Cup, IMG/TWI, the U.S. Equestrian Team and Walt Disney World Inc. Hastie holds a Master of Science in Communications Management from Syracuse University and a Bachelor of Science in Communications and Marketing from LeMoyne College in Syracuse. He will be based in the TAA’s Lexington, Kentucky, offices. Hastie also brings a long history of involvement with equestrian sports. He served as director of communications for the U.S. Equestrian Team from 1997 to 2000, and as executive director of the Morrisville College Foundation, he spearheaded fundraising efforts to build the Morrisville State College Equine Rehabilitation Center. He was also involved in organizing the 2012 American Express Ride for the Red Cross, a trail ride in Wellington, Florida, featuring Olympic riders and benefiting the American Red Cross National Disaster Relief Fund. “We’re pleased to welcome James to the TAA. His leadership and fundraising experience, combined with his passion and appreciation for horses, make him uniquely qualified to lead the organization in its mission to establish an industry-wide solution for Thoroughbred aftercare,” stated Jack Wolf, TAA board president and Thoroughbred owner. “We would also like to thank Mike Ziegler for his dedication and leadership of the TAA. He has been integral in our initial accreditation and fundraising and in establishing industry-wide support for our efforts.”

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EPO EQUINE Natural Supplement Providing EPO-Like Effects

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. EPO-Equine® 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.

By: Mark Hansen

That’s when the BRL team dug deeper and discovered a proprietary, horse-friendly strain of a common herb that promotes optimal blood-building 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 EPOEquine in healthy horses. For 42 days, one group of horses was supplemented with the active ingredient in EPO-Equine 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, EPO-Equine® 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. EPO-Equine® can be ordered at or 1-800-557-9055, and comes with a 100% money-back satisfaction guarantee.



hbpa news

President’s letter Dear Members of the National HBPA: This January, we will deviate from our usual practice of having one of our affiliates host our NHBPA Winter Convention. Following up on an idea broached several years ago by Joe Santanna and Remi Bellocq, we will head the wagon trains west to sunny California. I seriously hope each affiliate will make an effort to be well represented. As guests of Santa Anita Park, we will enjoy Sunshine Millions Day, and that will be a treat. In addition, our day of panels will be open to other horsemen’s groups. The goal is to provide educational material to a wider audience of horsemen and promote lively discussion. You will read elsewhere in this issue of The Horsemen’s Journal Phil Hanrahan’s letter discussing proposed medication reform. Phil, along with the NHBPA Model Rules Committee, Medication Committee and Dr. Tom Tobin, has worked many hours identifying glitches and inconsistencies in the proposed rules in hopes of making them as fair and sensible as possible. While the Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, Thoroughbred Owners of California and the California Thoroughbred Trainers work along parallel paths with this, there is really insufficient communication. By getting together under one roof, maybe we can find a strategy to confer on a more regular basis. The other hot topic at our recent Executive Committee meeting in Lexington, besides medication, was immigration. Our lobbyist, Brian Fitzgerald, as well as Will Velie from Horseman Labor Solutions and lobbyists from the National Thoroughbred Racing Association and the American Horse Council, has come up

with language to insert into an immigration bill that may appear. Stay tuned. Again, getting good employees is a constant worry for trainers in every location. Horsemen speaking with one voice would be a powerful thing, and having a network to know what problems others are having would be helpful. Thanks to our capable and organized Treasurer Ron Maus, the Budget and Dues report to the Executive Committee required little discussion. Thanks to Phil, Robert and Laura, the budget was clearly presented. Good news here: Dues remain the same, the staff brought us in on or under budget and the staff will all continue next year as will our auditor. Thanks to Todd and Ron and Phil for their review of potential auditors. Also, of course, thanks to Denis and Jennifer, who have stuck to their budget and continue to put out an excellent magazine. All in all, as we near the end of 2013, our train (not to mix metaphors) is moving along pretty smoothly. Tom Metzen Jr. is working on sponsorships for the California convention, but what will really make it a success is your participation. Please come out and show support for your industry. We need your ideas and input. We will show you a good time, and you might just learn something! Sincerely, Robin Richards President

2014 National HBPA Winter Convention

Pasadena, California • January 22 - January 26, 2014 HOTEL INFORMATION The Westin Pasadena 191 N. Los Robles Ave. Pasadena, CA 91101 Online Reservations: Hotel Reservations: (866) 837-4181 $204 Single Occupancy $224 Double Occupancy $259 Triple $294 Quad $699 Suites + State Sales Tax 15.09% Deadline for group rate on hotel reservations is December 27



HJ Winter


SCHEDULE OF EVENTS Wednesday, 1/22 • 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. — Arrival Cocktail Party Thursday, 1/23 • Meetings all day Friday, 1/24 • Meetings all day Saturday, 1/25 • Meetings in a.m. only • Group transportation via bus from hotel to racetrack • Afternoon at Santa Anita Park, sponsored by Santa Anita Park Sunday, 1/26 • NHBPA full Board of Directors meeting

Members: $350 • Spouse/significant other: $150 To register online and pay with a credit card, go to, or call the NHBPA office at (859) 259-0451.

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Federal Government Shutdown and Avoiding Default on the Government’s Debt Preoccupies Congress The first half of October, Congress was consumed with the shutdown of the federal government and avoiding a default on the federal government’s debt. The federal government, with the exception of essential personnel, operations and services, was shut down between October 1 and October 16 as a result of Congress’ failure to enact either legislation appropriating funds to operate the federal government for fiscal year 2014 before October 1, the beginning of the federal government’s new fiscal year, or a continuing resolution for an interim authorization of appropriations for fiscal year 2014. The government shutdown ended October 16 when both the House and Senate approved legislation negotiated by Senate Leaders Harry Reid (D-NV) and Mitch McConnell (R-KY), H.R. 2775, that funds the federal government through January 15, 2014, at sequestration levels, an annualized spending level of $986 billion, and suspends the federal government’s debt ceiling until February 7, 2014. A House-Senate budget conference committee was established separately, but in conjunction with the House and Senate approval of H.R. 2775, when the Senate agreed to a conference with the House on their respective budget resolutions approved by each chamber earlier in the year. The intent is for Congress to agree to a budget that, at a minimum, would fund the federal government for the remainder of fiscal year 2014 in order to avoid another government shutdown early next year and to extend the debt ceiling through the end of fiscal year 2014. The 29 House and Senate conference committee members charged with reaching an agreement on a budget resolution for fiscal year 2014 by December 13, 2013, convened their first meeting on October 30. The next meeting was scheduled for November 13. Congress’ efforts to reach an agreement on a budget resolution for fiscal year 2014 will continue to distract Congress for the remainder of the first session. Below is a report on the current status of pending federal legislation of interest to National HBPA members.

Federal Medication Legislation As reported previously, U.S. House of Representatives Member Joe Pitts (R-PA) and U. S. Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) introduced new federal medication legislation, The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act of 2013, on May 16, 2013. The House bill, H.R. 2012, has four co-sponsors: Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-KY), Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Rep. Janice Schakowsky (D-IL) and Rep. Jose Serrano (D-NY). The Senate companion bill, S. 973, has one co-sponsor, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR). H.R. 2012 has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce Committee, chaired by Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), and its Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade, chaired by Rep. Lee Terry (R-NE). The Senate bill has been referred to the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, chaired by Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV). The bill has not been referred to one of the Senate Commerce Committee’s subcommittees. In past years, federal medication bills introduced in the Senate have been held at the full Commerce Committee level and not referred to any one of its subcommittees.


HJ Winter


To date, no formal action has been taken on either H.R. 2012 or S. 973; however, the House Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade Subcommittee may hold a hearing on H.R. 2012 sometime before the end of November.

Federal Internet Gambling Legislation As we also have reported previously, on June 6, 2013, Rep. Peter King (R-NY) introduced H.R. 2282, the Internet Gambling, Enforcement and Consumer Protection Act of 2013. The bill would legalize all forms of Internet gambling, with the exception of sports betting, when offered by federally licensed and regulated operators. Under the bill, the federal government would retain overall licensing and oversight over federal Internet gambling but would rely on the states for licensing and enforcement under a common federal standard. The bill would create an Office of Internet Gambling Oversight within the U.S. Department of Treasury that, as the federal regulator, would oversee state and tribal agencies carrying out licensing activity authorized by the bill. H.R. 2282 has been referred to three House committees: House Energy and Commerce and its Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade; House Financial Services; and House Judiciary and its Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations. The bill has one co-sponsor: Rep. Michael Capuano (D-MA). Also, as anticipated following the introduction of Rep. King’s bill, Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX), Chairman Emeritus of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, introduced his own Internet gambling bill, H.R. 2666, the Internet Poker Freedom Act of 2013, on July 11, 2013. In contrast to Rep. King’s bill, Rep. Barton’s bill would allow only for Internet poker similar to the bill, H.R. 2666, that he introduced in the 112th Congress. H.R. 2666 has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce Committee and its Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade and the House Financial Services Committee. No Internet gambling legislation has yet been introduced in the Senate. However, in July 2013, the Senate Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Insurance, chaired by Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) and Ranking Subcommittee Member Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV), held a hearing on The Expansion of Internet Gambling: Assessing Consumer Protection Concerns. The hearing focused on concerns about the potentially negative impacts of expanded Internet gambling on consumers, the potential for corruption and other potential negative effects on the public.

Immigration Reform Legislation On May 21, 2013, the full Senate approved by a vote of 68-32 the comprehensive immigration reform bill, S. 744, Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act. In the House of Representatives, the Republican leadership and the Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), stated that they do not intend to take up consideration of the Senate-passed bill. Rather than pursue a comprehensive bill, they intend to consider a number of smaller bills. In June, the House Judiciary Committee approved four separate immigration bills: H.R. 2278, the Strengthen and Fortify Enforcement (SAFE) Act,

that strengthens interior enforcement and border security; H.R. 1773, which creates a new agricultural guest worker program; H.R. 2131, which addresses high-skilled visas; and H.R. 1772, which expands the current E-Verify system. The House Homeland Security Committee approved one additional bill, H.R. 1417, which directs the Department of Homeland Security to develop a plan for achieving operational control of security in high-traffic areas along the border within two years, and the entire southwestern border within five years. It is unclear when and how the House Republican leadership will proceed with immigration reform. Since the end of the federal government shutdown in mid-October, the various proponents of immigration reform have been increasing their efforts and visibility on Capitol Hill, as well as orchestrating grassroots efforts across the country, to try to convince the House Republican leadership to move immigration reform legislation to the House floor for consideration. On October 2, the House Democratic leadership introduced a comprehensive immigration reform bill, H.R. 15, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act, to serve as another vehicle for demonstrating support in the House for moving immigration reform legislation. The collective efforts of the NHBPA, and others in the industry, to address the labor needs of the horse racing industry in the pending immigration reform effort are ongoing at this time.

Federal Legislation on Pharmaceutical Compounding On September 28, the House of Representatives approved H.R. 3204, the Drug Quality and Security Act, by voice vote. The bill is a rare bipartisan, bicameral House-Senate compromise that was negotiated behind the scenes by the members and staff of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the Senate Health, Education and Labor Committee. The bill, as approved by the House, would amend the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act with respect to human drug compounding and drug supply chain security. The bill would expand the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s oversight of compounding pharmacies, institute a system of tracing drugs through the supply chain and strengthen licensure requirements for wholesale distributors and third-party providers. H.R. 3204 does not address compounded animal drugs. The bill does include authorization of a broad Government Accounting Office (GAO) study to be completed within 36 months of enactment of the legislation on pharmacy compounding and the adequacy of state and federal efforts to assure the safety of compounded drugs. However, the GAO study provisions included in H.R. 3204 do not specifically address animal drugs as had been included in a study that was provided for in the Senate bill, S. 959, that was approved by the Senate Health, Education and Labor Committee in June. Senate Majority Leader Reid stated on the Senate floor on October 28 that he intends to have the Senate take up consideration of the House-passed bill, H.R. 3204, prior to the Thanksgiving recess.

Federal Legislation to Amend the Horse Protection Act of 1970 H.R. 1518, the Prevent All Soring Tactics Act of 2013, introduced in April by Rep. Whitfield, has strong support with 216 House members co-sponsoring the legislation. The bill would amend the Horse Protection Act of 1970 to prohibit a Tennessee Walking Horse, a racking horse or a spotted saddle horse from being shown, exhibited or auctioned with an “action device” or “a weighted shoe, pad, wedge, hoof band or other device or material if it is constructed to artificially alter the gait of the horse and is not strictly protective or therapeutic.” The bill excludes from the term “action device” soft rubber or soft leather bell boots or quarter boots. The bill would also increase fines and penalties for violations of the Act. The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade Subcommittee will hold a hearing on the legislation in November. A Senate companion bill to H.R. 1518, S. 1406, was introduced in July by Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA). The bill has 26 co-sponsors and has been referred to the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee for consideration. To date, no formal action has been taken on the bill.

Federal Tax Legislation As reported previously, Rep. Andy Barr (R-KY) introduced two tax bills of interest to NHBPA members, H.R. 998, the Equine Tax Parity Act, and H.R. 2212, the Race Horse Cost Recovery Act. There have been no formal developments on either of these bills. H.R. 998, the Equine Tax Parity Act, would make horses eligible for capital gains treatment after 12 months, similar to other business assets (except cattle). Under current law, horses held for breeding, racing, showing or draft purposes qualify for the capital gains rates only if held for 24 months. Under the current federal tax code, gains by individuals from the sale of property used in a trade or business, including horses, qualify for long-term capital gains and are subject to the maximum capital gains tax rate of 15 percent for taxpayers earning less than $450,000 or 20 percent for those earning more than $450,000. In light of the fact that the individual tax rate can go as high as 39.6 percent, the lower capital gains rate is quite favorable. H.R. 2212, the Race Horse Cost Recovery Act, would permanently put all racehorses in the three-year category for depreciation purposes. In 2008, the Farm Bill approved by Congress included provisions that allowed all racehorses to be depreciated over three years, regardless of their age when placed in service. These provisions are scheduled to expire at the end of this year unless extended by Congress either permanently, as proposed by H.R. 2212, or temporarily. The two bills have been referred to the House Ways and Means Committee, which has jurisdiction over all revenue bills. It is unlikely either of these bills will be considered as standalone legislation, but instead will be sought to be added to a suitable legislative vehicle, along with a revenue offset to cover the estimated “cost” to the U.S. Treasury as a result of the expected loss of revenue associated with the two tax provisions. Ackerley Images




+ research medication update

NTRA Continues Push for Uniform Medication Rules and Reform

A nationwide movement to adopt uniform national reforms addressing changes to medication regulation, enforcement and laboratory testing continues to gain support and momentum, according to a press release issued by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA). As of November 1, nine states, including the entire Mid-Atlantic region, have approved the new medication reforms that are a central component of the reform effort. The states are Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia. The rules are currently under consideration in Arkansas, California, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, Ohio, New Mexico and Wyoming. Three laboratories that conduct equine drug testing for six racing jurisdictions have received accreditation from the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC), and laboratories conducting testing for 19 other racing states have applied for RMTC accreditation. Laboratories receiving full RMTC accreditation are the University of California, Davis (which tests samples for racehorses in California and New Mexico) and HSL Sports Science (which conducts testing for Kentucky, Maine and Virginia). The Ohio Department of Agriculture has been granted interim accreditation by the RMTC, with only a site inspection remaining before it receives a full accreditation designation. Industrial Laboratories (which conducts testing for Arizona, Colorado, Minnesota, North Dakota, Oklahoma and Wyoming), Truesdail Laboratories (Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Jersey, Oregon and Washington), Dalare Associates (Delaware and West Virginia), New York Drug Testing and Research Program (New York) and Pennsylvania Equine Toxicology and Research Laboratory (Pennsylvania) have applied for RMTC accreditation. Significant progress is also being made in the area of third-party administration of furosemide (otherwise known as Lasix or Salix). The furosemide restrictions require that furosemide be the only medication authorized for administration on race day and limit furosemide administration to no less than four hours prior to post time for the race in which the horse is entered. The furosemide restrictions also require that the administration of furosemide be performed only by third-party veterinarians or veterinary technicians who are prohibited from working as private veterinarians or technicians on the racetrack or with participating

licensees. The program is under way or in the process of being established in no fewer than 14 states, including Colorado, Delaware, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania (at Penn National Race Course), Texas (at Lone Star Park and Sam Houston Race Park), Virginia and West Virginia. A total of seven states have committed to implementation of the Multiple Medication Violation (MMV) Penalty System, and regulators in many other states have indicated a desire to adopt the MMV Penalty System once the uniform medication rules are passed in their respective jurisdictions. “We urge all racing states to adopt these rules in their entirety. They are comprehensive and far-reaching, and they establish a process for future modification to reflect the latest scientific research and development,” said NTRA President and CEO Alex Waldrop, who also serves as Chairman of the RMTC. “These rules are in the best interests of the health and safety of our human and equine athletes, enhance the integrity of our sport, ensure a level playing field for our competitors, assist horsemen who race in multiple jurisdictions and accomplish the uniform regulation of racing in the United States.” The reforms were developed by the RMTC, the industry’s scientific advisory organization consisting of 25 major racing industry stakeholder organizations, and the Association of Racing Commissioners International (RCI), the industry’s association of state regulatory bodies responsible for the integrity of racing. RMTC recommended the reforms to RCI, and RCI voted to incorporate the reforms into their official model rules earlier this year. Individual regulatory bodies must now move to adopt the reforms. In late September, the NTRA sent a letter to pari-mutuel regulators urging them to adopt uniform national reforms addressing much-needed changes to medication regulation, enforcement and laboratory testing. The letter was co-signed by more than 50 racetracks and industry organizations. Several more racetracks have signed on as co-signatories to the letter. The new co-signatories are Churchill Downs, Arlington Park, Fair Grounds Race Course, Calder Race Course, Tampa Bay Downs and Kentucky Downs. The National HBPA was not one of the co-signers, and while the NHBPA supports the main concepts of these reforms, the organization also has some concerns it wants addressed, including the list of 24 therapeutic medications. For further explanation, see NHBPA CEO Phil Hanrahan’s letter on page 2 of this issue. The reforms are accessible online at

American Horse Council Seeks Industry Input on 2015 NAHMS The American Study Horse Council (AHC) is asking its member organizations, their members and the entire horse community to help Equine in the drafting of the 2015 National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) Equine Study, which is in the preparation stages now. NAHMS is within the U.S. Department of Agriculture and is working with the National Agricultural Statistics Service to prepare for its Equine 2015 study. The horse industry’s input is essential if this study is to address the priorities and questions the horse community has about itself. All organizations should pass this request on to their members so that as many horse owners, breeders and stakeholders can participate in the preparation of the 2015 study goals. This important study can go a long way in filling information gaps in equine industry data. NAHMS is seeking input through the end of 2013. The AHC stresses that the horse community has the opportunity to help determine the objectives of the study by identifying what information 16

HJ Winter


it would like to know about itself. The AHC is asking horsemen to complete a five-minute survey at This needs assessment survey can help ensure that the Equine 2015 study will be the best possible. The survey is intended to identify the specific information that members of the horse community deem valuable. Surveys must be completed by December 31, 2013. This will be NAHMS’ third national study of the equine industry. It is scheduled to begin in summer 2015. The study is conducted every 10 years; the last one was in 2005. Results of previous NAHMS equine studies are available at Any comments or questions can be addressed to Dr. Josie Traub-Dargatz at (970) 494-7261 or

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Medication Committee Corner

More Acute Sudden Death from EIPH at Higher Altitudes By Kimberley Brewer, DVM, Abelardo Morales Briceño, DVM, and Aniceto Méndez Sánchez, DVM, Director, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Córdoba, Spain

Denis Blake

As interest in outlawing the use of furosemide in racing ramped up in 2010, we began to revisit the scientific and racing literature on the incidence of exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH) and the efficacy of furosemide in preventing EIPH and related syndromes. We chose to focus on an important aspect of EIPH that has received little scientific attention, namely the incidence of acute sudden death in racing horses associated with EIPH, because this poses obvious risks for the health and welfare of horses and also the jockeys involved in Thoroughbred racing. Horsemen have long known that EIPH can cause horses to slow down or pull up abruptly, thereby endangering the lives of horses and jockeys. What was less well understood until a key paper by Gunson and co-workers (at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine) in 1988 was that horse racing is also associated with a small but very clear-cut rate of acute sudden EIPH-related death in racing horses in which the horse collapses, either acutely on the track or very soon after racing. In fact, the bleeding into the lungs can be so acute that horses can collapse and die on the track with no signs whatsoever of bleeding from the nostrils. In these cases, a full necropsy is required to identify acute sudden EIPH as the cause of death. These acute sudden EIPH-related deaths became apparent in Kentucky as soon as Kentucky commenced its post-race necropsy program. A dramatic case occurred in 1996 when a horse racing at Turfway Park went down suddenly early in a race. The necropsy showed a fractured cervical vertebra, i.e., a broken neck, which occurred when the horse actually hit the surface of the racetrack. However, what had caused the horse to hit the racetrack so hard was an incident of acute pulmonary hemorrhage, EIPH, and the cause of death in this horse was acute sudden EIPH, the lungs of the horse being full of blood although no blood whatsoever was visible at the nostrils.


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Reviewing the scientific literature on this matter, Harkins and colleagues noted the seminal 1988 work of Gunson, Sweeney and Soma on this matter. These researchers surveyed the cause of death in racing at two Pennsylvania racetracks and reported that EIPH was by far the most common nonmusculoskeletal related cause of death in Pennsylvania racing. Harkins, et al. wrote this particular case up for publication and were careful to extend the definition of EIPH to include a small but identifiable number of EIPH-associated acute sudden deaths in racing horses, a condition that was considered in Pennsylvania to account for about 82 percent of non-musculoskeletal injuryrelated deaths. Reviewing the incidence of such EIPH-related acute sudden deaths in 2011, we became aware of research work from Caracas, Venezuela, where a much higher incidence of acute EIPH-associated deaths was reported in horses racing at the Caracas city racetrack, La Rinconada. The rate of these deaths appeared to run at about 15-fold greater than the rate reported by our Pennsylvania colleagues, and we wondered about the basis for the much higher EIPH-related acute sudden death rates at La Rinconada as compared with the rates in Pennsylvania. We specifically noted that La Rinconada was at a relatively high altitude, about 3,066 feet, but also noted that South African literature suggests that the incidence of EIPH is higher at sea level than at altitude. Revisiting this matter, our Venezuelan colleagues collected data on the rates of EIPH at three different Venezuelan racetracks, the 3,066-foot altitude track La Rinconada, and two other tracks, De Valencia at 1,460 feet and Santa Rita at about 80 feet, as close to sea level as one is likely to find a racetrack. The results of this comparison were interesting, with the rates of EIPH acute sudden death at sea level being entirely comparable with the rates at the

Pennsylvania tracks and elsewhere at tracks close to sea level. On the other hand, the rate at the intermediate altitude Venezuelan racetrack was about sixfold greater than at sea level and the rate at La Rinconada being, as previously reported, about 15-fold greater that at tracks close to sea level. One must also note that our colleagues’ data show that Venezuelan horsemen appear to be fully aware of a greater risk of EIPH at altitude. The necropsy samples taken from these horses were analyzed for the presence of furosemide. Review of the data showed that the rate of use of furosemide increased with altitude, from no furosemide in the single acute sudden death EIPH horse at sea level, to 20 percent of horses at 1,460 feet and 65 percent of horses on furosemide at La Rinconada. These data are fully consistent with horses racing at higher altitude in Venezuela being perceived by Venezuelan horsemen as being at greater risk of EIPH. Additionally, the data also suggest that Venezuelan horsemen consider furosemide to be an effective preventative of EIPH. Given these clinical facts, we next looked for altitude-associated factors possibly associated with EIPH. From the experience of horsemen in the western United States, where American Quarter Horses run faster at higher altitudes, we reviewed the track records for three different length races at each of these three different altitude Venezuelan racetracks. As one might expect, the track records for the three different race distances are slowest at sea level at Santa Rita, somewhat faster at 1,460 feet at De Valencia and even faster at La Rinconada, the highest of the three racetracks for which we compared track records. Of particular interest was the fact that the longer races at sea level are highly sensitive to the slowing effect of low altitude, since horses at sea level have to push considerably more air out of their way during a race than horses racing at 3,066 feet, and this effect shows up clearly in the longer distance races. 11/14/13 10:31 AM Page 1 619333_AD

One might also note that these findings are fully consistent with the experiences of equine veterinarians and American horsemen racing and working at higher altitudes in the western United States. These horsemen have long been of the opinion that the incidence of EIPH is greater at higher altitude, as is also supported by the furosemide usage patterns of Venezuelan horsemen. These findings stand in sharp contrast to South African reports that epistaxis, which is bleeding from both nostrils post race, is more prevalent at sea level than at altitude. Also of note is that the sudden acute death form of EIPH has not been scientifically studied in South Africa, although there is at least one reported South African case of acute sudden EIPH-related death in a recent South African doctoral thesis. It is also interesting that some of the first unequivocal veterinary literature reports of acute sudden EIPH-related deaths come from the early reports of Pfaff working in South Africa. Pfaff was one of the first researchers to report the occurrence of epistaxis-related acute sudden death in the veterinary literature. With respect to the scientific literature, it is at this point clear that the Venezuelan research shows that its sea level incidence of acute sudden EIPH-related deaths is very similar to those reported at close to sea level elsewhere in the world, for example, the data from Pennsylvania and Singapore. Additionally, the data from Venezuela regarding the altitude-related effect on EIPH sudden death are also particularly clear-cut and convincing. What remains unclear is whether the reports from Venezuela showing that increasing altitude is apparently directly associated with increasing rates of EIPH-related acute sudden death are consistent with what occurs elsewhere in the world. This is an obvious area for further scientific research.

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HJ Winter


Jul. 16 – Sep. 3, Nov. 5-30, 2014

Dec. 26, 2013 – Jun. 29, 2014

Dec. 28, 2012 – Dec. 22, 2013, Dec. 28, 2013 – Dec. 22, 2014

Dec. 26, 2013 – Jun. 29, 2014, Sep. 25 – Nov. 2, 2014

Del Mar

Golden Gate Fields

Los Alamitos Race Course

Santa Anita Park




Sep. 5-21, 2014

Barretts @ LA County Fair


Aug. 15-16, 2014

Aug. 31 – Sep. 6, 2014

Apr. 12-25, 2014

Jun. 8-22, 2014

May 3 – Aug. 9, 2014

Aug. 2-10, 2014

May 4-25, 2014

Jul. 4-13, 2014

Aug. 17 – Sep. 14, 2014

Cassia County Fair

Eastern Idaho County Fair

Gem County Fair

Jerome County Fair

Les Bois Park

Oneida County Fair

Pocatello Downs

Rupert Downs

Sandy Downs

Feb. 21 – Apr. 27, Oct. 1 – Dec. 31, 2014*

Hawthorne Race Course

Dec. 1, 2013 – Jun. 29, 2014

Tampa Bay Downs

Apr. 29 – Sep. 1, 2014*

Jan. 21, 2014

Ocala Training Center

Fairmount Park

Nov. 29, 2013 – Feb. 23, 2014

Hialeah Park

Apr. 28 – Sep. 30, 2014*

Dec. 6, 2013 – Jun. 30, 2014

Gulfstream Park

Arlington Park

Sep. 1, 2013 – Jun. 30, 2014

Calder Race Course

Apr. 19 – Nov. 1, 2014

Hastings Racecourse

British Columbia, Canada

Oct. 5, 2013 – May 6, 2014

Turf Paradise

Jan. 10 – Apr. 12, 2014

Apr. 26 – May 4, 2014

Santa Cruz Co. Fair @ Sonoita

Oaklawn Park

Feb. 8 – Mar. 30, 2014

Rillito Park




20 20 racing 13 14

May 9-11, 2014

Fonner Park Horsemen’s Park


New York

New Mexico

Feb. 21 – May 3, 2014




Belterra Park (River Downs)


Zia Park

SunRay Park

Sunland Park

Ruidoso Downs

The Downs at Albuquerque

Lincoln Race Course

Aug. 1 – Sep. 1, 2014

Canterbury Park


Nov. 2 – Dec. 17, 2013, Jan. 6 – May 3, 2014

May 8 – Oct. 19, 2014

Nov. 1 – Dec. 31, 2013

Aug. 2 – Oct. 26, 2014

Apr. 18 – Jun. 22, 2014

Dec. 6, 2013 – Apr. 15, 2014

May 23 – Sep. 1, 2014

Aug. 2 – Oct. 26, 2014


May 16 – Sep. 13, 2014

May 3 – Sep. 28, 2014

Mount Pleasant Meadows


Jun. 2 – Nov. 29, 2014*

Apr. 3 – Jun. 7, 2014

Pimlico Race Course Suffolk Downs

Sep. 19, 2013 – Mar. 29, 2014, Sep. 5 – Dec. 31, 2014

Laurel Park

Jan. 11 – Mar. 26, May 2 – Sep. 21, 2014

Nov. 22, 2013 – Mar. 30, 2014

Fair Grounds Race Course Harrah’s Louisiana Downs

Oct 2 – Dec. 19, 2013, Apr. 9 – Aug. 30, 2014

Evangeline Downs

Oct. 11, 2013 – Mar. 15, 2014, Apr. 25 – Jul. 12, 2014

Jan. 1 – Mar. 30, Dec. 4-31, 2014

Delta Downs

Sep. 6-24, 2014

Apr. 4-25, Oct. 8-25, 2014

Keeneland Race Course

Turfway Park

Jul. 3 – Sep. 1, 2014

Ellis Park

Kentucky Downs

Apr. 26 – Jun. 29, Sep. 1-28, Oct. 26 – Nov. 29, 2014

Churchill Downs





*Pending approval

West Virginia

Jan. 2 – Dec. 28, 2013, Jan. 1 – Dec. 28, 2014 Mar. 1 – Dec. 20, 2013, Mar. 1 – Dec. 20, 2014

Hollywood Casino @ Charles Town Races Mountaineer Race Track

Nov. 21-30, 2014

Jan. 17 – Mar. 9, Mar. 20 – May 11, 2014

Sam Houston Race Park Valle de Los Tesoros

Oct. 24-25, 2014

Saddle Brook Park

Apr. 10 – Jul. 12, Sep. 19 – Nov. 15, 2014

Lone Star Park

Oct. 4 – Dec. 28, 2013, Jun. 6 – Aug. 9, Sep. 5 – Nov. 29, 2014

Aug. 22-31, 2014

Laredo Downs

Retama Park

Jul. 4 – Aug. 24, 2014

Gillespie County Fairgrounds

Jan. 3 – Dec. 28, 2013, Jan. 2 – Dec. 28, 2014

Penn National Texas

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31, 2013, Jan. 4 – Dec. 30, 2014

Parx Racing


Mar. 3 – May 17, Sep. 6 – Nov. 8, 2014

Will Rogers Downs

Jul. 21, 2013 – Jan. 26, 2014

Aug. 16 – Dec. 15, 2013, Mar. 7 – Jun. 1, Aug. 15 – Dec. 14, 2014

Remington Park

Portland Meadows

Jun. 7 – Aug. 1, 2014

Apr. 18 – Nov. 16, 2014

Nov. 24 – Dec. 30, 2014

Fair Meadows


Mahoning Valley



Schedule is based on available information at the time each issue goes to press. All racing jurisdictions have differing schedules and policies regarding the granting of future race dates that impact availability.

hj dates

n n



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Chaplaincy at the racetracks helps backside workers—body, mind and soul By Shelby O’Neill

On the backside of a racetrack, a number of people care for the horses— trainers, veterinarians, farriers, exercise riders, hot walkers and grooms. But who, in turn, cares for those caretakers, specifically those backside workers who may be from another country and dealing with feelings of isolation? That’s where racetrack chaplains come in. Across North America, they fulfill a unique niche through which they offer not only spiritual guidance to backside workers but many more services as well. “It’s a ministry of presence,” said Chaplain Ed Underwood, who works at Canterbury Park in Shakopee, Minnesota, and is the husband of Minnesota HBPA Executive Director Patrice Underwood. “It’s about being available and being around for a lot of hours. It’s a very demanding ministry, but it’s very rewarding. I have some great friends on the backside, and at the end of each meet, it’s hard for them and for me to say goodbye when we’ve been close.” Because race meets by definition are for a finite time period, save for a few year-round tracks, backside workers often are faced with an itinerant lifestyle that presents many challenges, and chaplains step in to fill these gaps as best as they can. “Ninety percent is hands-on in meeting the physical needs of the people we serve,” said Chaplain Tom LaPointe, who works in South Florida at Gulfstream Park, Calder Race Course and Palm Beach Training Center. “Ten percent is the spiritual part of it.” Often chaplains, like Underwood and LaPointe, also serve as pastors of churches in addition to their service to the racetracks. Many chaplains are affiliated with the Race Track Chaplaincy of America (RTCA) (see sidebar), a national organization founded in 1972 and based in Lexington, Kentucky. “A chaplain is looking out for the social, spiritual, physical and educational needs of our people on the racetrack,” said RTCA Executive Director 22

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Courtesy Ed Underwood


Chaplain Craig N. Wiley, a retired U.S. Army Colonel with 42 years of military experience. “Our chaplains are our boots-on-the-ground ministers. A racetrack chaplain does everything you would expect a minister to do—marries, buries, counsels, baptizes and gives communion. The racetrack is a community, and our chaplains are given access to that community by horsemen.”

More than Chapel When you think of a racetrack chaplain, naturally your thoughts drift to church services, but the ministry of chaplaincy extends well beyond the bounds of Bible study, although chaplains definitely find time for that, too. “One of the important aspects of chaplaincy is doing what you might call administrative presence,” Underwood said. “It’s all about connecting with people where and when I can.” In order to be available to those who might need them, chaplains work long hours at the track, often beginning with devotionals over the loudspeaker during morning training. From there, chaplains might head to the track kitchen to share meals with the backside workers. The rest of the day can be spent in any number of different ways, from offering counseling services, driving workers to doctor appointments, visiting sick or hurt backsiders in the hospital, preparing for chapel services, leading AA meetings, providing computer access for workers to email home, planning family activities such as movie nights or coordinating trackwide soccer tournaments. Chaplains also help stock food and clothing pantries and line up educational courses teaching English, computer skills or professional advancement, such as the Groom Elite program. Above: Canterbury Park Chaplain Ed Underwood (far right) prays with members of the track’s gate crew before the races get underway.

Courtesy Florida HBPA

“I make sure I’m wherever anybody needs me,” LaPointe said. “It keeps us busy, keeps us going. On Mondays and Thursdays, I pick up 2,000 pounds of food, all sandwiches, prepaid and donated through the 7-Eleven. I give them out to all the backside workers, security and anybody that’s not making a lot of money.” Food, not so surprisingly, plays a large role in the ministry on the backside. At the South Florida tracks, LaPointe coordinates barbecues, special Thanksgiving and Christmas meals and a backside appreciation day, which has garnered Christmas-like anticipation from backside workers. During the event, around $10,000 worth of gifts are given to workers and their families. Past gifts have included televisions, small refrigerators and, last year, 130 bicycles. In addition to feeding backside workers emotionally, spiritually and—sometimes—literally, chaplains also strive to ensure that people at the racetrack receive the necessary health care. That means providing transportation to doctor appointments, bringing in medical professionals at low-cost or no-charge rates or, in the case of Gulfstream, offering an on-site healthcare facility. The Florida HBPA took on the responsibility of paying for a trailer to be converted into a clinic complete with three examination rooms and capabilities for X-rays and taking blood. “A lot of the guys get sick and don’t like leaving the track,” LaPointe said, noting that a lack of transportation also makes it difficult for backside workers. “When they come in and have the clinic right there, it just runs smoothly. It lets you keep your focus on taking care of the guys.” Chaplaincy extends into mental health as well, offering counseling and drug and alcohol abuse treatment.

“On Saturday mornings, I share my office with a drug and alcohol counselor,” Underwood said. “Anybody that comes in, the Quality of Life Foundation (a Canterbury-specific charity) will pay for treatment for them. They do an intake to determine the treatment a person needs, and they’ll pay for it whether it’s outpatient and even inpatient.”

Partnering with the HBPA “A trainer cannot do his job if his grooms or hot walkers are not in good holistic health, spiritually, physically and mentally,” Wiley said. Because of this mutual benefit to horsemen and backside workers, the National HBPA and state affiliates have played a role in the success of racetrack chaplaincy. In some cases, state affiliates provide funding for chaplaincy operations and activities, such as group recreational opportunities that make a tremendous impact on morale. “The Florida HBPA is fabulous,” LaPointe said. “I’ve been so fortunate between the FHBPA and Gulfstream and Calder management. They’ve been a real blessing. This summer we took a group up to the Rapids Water Park in West Palm Beach. We took maybe 70 people, and the FHBPA paid for the bus. That goes over big time. Every month we take a boat out fishing with 50 to 60 people, and the FHBPA sponsors a big part of that, providing lunch and snacks and transportation. They love that a lot.” In Minnesota, a joint effort among Canterbury Park’s management team, horsemen including the Minnesota HBPA, the Quality of Life Foundation Above: With car ownership being a rarity for backside workers, a bicycle can be an important means of transportation, and more than 130 of them were given out last year in Florida.



Courtesy Florida HBPA

and others yielded big results when the track opened an on-site chapel. Construction began in 2007, and the chapel was dedicated in August 2008. “A lot of the horsemen and a lot of the owners contributed substantially for the building of the chapel,” Underwood said. “Because of some of the businesses they’re in, horsemen and owners donated the product or the workers for that to happen. We had different silent and live auctions, and Pat Day came for the fundraising and again for the dedication.” Underwood attributes the chapel’s construction, as well as other backside programs, to the support he receives from horsemen and the track. “The success I feel I have on the backside is because of the HBPA, the Quality of Life Foundation and management at Canterbury,” Underwood said. “They are very open to being a team. Even though I’m not a highly visible person on the frontside, they still support and are very open to what we do. That’s very empowering.” Nationally, the RTCA feels the support of the HBPA and horsemen as well. “We have a tremendously close relationship with the HBPA,” Wiley said. “In many cases, they provide financial support for our chaplains and keep 24

HJ Winter


programs afloat. We help by sharing information with one another, too. The HBPA can alert the chaplain if they have a particular issue important to their work on the backside, and the chaplain helps assist the HBPA folks in keeping their folks as healthy as possible. The HBPA also helps us by providing other types of resources, such as facilities to help with our programs.” LaPointe credits the Florida affiliate with providing him with more time to spend on his ministry. “The backing of the FHBPA has been astronomical because it frees me up for all the stuff we’re able to do,” LaPointe said. “Everything that we do in our chaplaincy is because they allow me to spend all my time focusing on the needs of the people on the backside. I get a lot of support and a lot of the credit for the stuff we do, but it’s because everybody has that same desire to reach out to anybody who’s in need.” Above: Florida Chaplain Tom LaPointe (white shirt) organizes a variety of family-friendly outings during the year for the children of backside workers, including this trip to a local water park.

How the RTCA Reaches the Racetracks Founded in 1972, the Race Track Chaplaincy of America (RTCA) came about when Horace “Salty” Roberts began ministering on the backside of Gulfstream Park and Monmouth Park. Today, that organization has grown to include 33 RTCA chaplains serving 48 racetracks in 19 states, in addition to a presence in Canada and Australia. “The overall mission of RTCA, through its councils and chaplains, is to make disciples for Jesus Christ through teaching, preaching and ministering to the spiritual, emotional, physical, social and educational needs of those persons involved in all aspects of the horse racing industry,” said Chaplain Craig N. Wiley, the executive director of RTCA. After more than four decades of military service and retiring as a U.S. Army Colonel, Wiley stepped into his role with RTCA in April 2012. Since that time, he has traveled the country, visiting chaplains from his home base of the RTCA National Service Center in Lexington, Kentucky. “It’s a great ministry,” Wiley said. “I’ve witnessed the backside and the folks back there. What I have found out is that when we get a chaplain in the organization that they seem to stay around with us for quite a long time. Last year, I gave a service plaque to one chaplain for 30 years with us, another for 25 years and another for 10 years. Our ministers to the racetracks have a lot of passion for what they do.” RTCA chaplains provide backside workers and their families with a number of services, including organizing clothes and food closets, opening the chapel for language classes and facilitating healthcare services, such as reduced-price or no-cost visits from dentists or chiropractors. Other services include transportation, educational workshops, recreational activities and legal and financial referrals. Since 2003, RTCA has presented the annual White Horse Award in conjunction with the Breeders’ Cup World Championships. The award is given to recognize an individual who acts in a heroic way that benefits human or horse, thus honoring the unsung horse racing heroes. Another important function of RTCA is providing resources to the chaplains within the organizations to support their ministries. “Not only am I the executive director, but I’m also a chaplain myself,” Wiley said. “My primary mission is to be the chaplain to the chaplains. We’re here to serve our folks, not to have them serve us.”

Courtesy Ed Underwood

For more information on the RTCA, go to

Through the cooperation of the Minnesota HBPA, Canterbury Park management and the Quality of Life Foundation, along with some fundraising help from Hall of Fame jockey Pat Day, this chapel on the backside of the track opened in 2008.


© Photography


Bad Bugs and the Problem of Antimicrobial Resistance

By Heather Smith Thomas

Proper diagnosis, treatment and dosage can help prevent problems down the road

Several “bad bugs” can affect horses and humans, and a big concern today is that some of these pathogens are becoming resistant to the antibiotics we use to treat them. Dr. Elizabeth Santschi, an associate professor at The Ohio State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, says responsible use of antimicrobials is important for horse owners, since the problem of resistance is becoming a larger issue. 26

HJ Winter


“This responsibility involves not just the choice of individual drugs, but also the duration and concentration of a drug,” Dr. Santschi said. “If we need to use antibiotics, they should be used at sufficient concentration for the appropriate amount of time to do the job. Where we get into trouble is when we use an improper dose or use the drug for too short a duration.” If the antibiotic therapy has not completely eliminated the bacterial infection by the time you stop using the drug, the remaining bacteria are the ones that are the hardiest. They are the ones that survive to reproduce, which can lead to the development of antibiotic resistance. “Most of the antibiotics we use today are actually created by fungi in the environment,” Dr. Santschi explained. “It’s part of their war with bacteria. Fungi produce antibiotics in order to kill bacteria before bacteria kill them. All microorganisms are competitors. Antibiotics are a natural substance.” But using antibiotics at higher concentrations than naturally found in the environment changes the balance. By putting antibiotics into the equine population, we change the population dynamics of bacteria. In short, we are trying to kill the bad ones and leave the good ones, but this can be a tricky challenge. “We are also handicapped in equine medicine and surgery because we have a limited number of antibiotics available that are safe to use in horses and also economical,” Dr. Santschi continued. “Some antibiotics that we routinely use in pets or humans are prohibitively expensive for a large animal like a horse because they would cost hundreds or thousands of dollars a day because dosage is determined by body size and weight.” Even if the antibiotics are not prohibitively expensive, they may require IV administration as opposed to a pill that a horse owner or trainer can give the animal. IV administration may require hospitalization or a lay-up facility to administer the antibiotic. This will increase the total cost of treating the horse. And the longer the horse is in the hospital, the greater the chance of developing complications with something else because the sickest patients are in the hospital, as are the most aggressive microbes. Many people worry about methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), but other bacteria pose drug resistance problems as well. These include Salmonella, Enterobacter and Enterococcus, along with other gram-negative bacteria that live in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Most of these bacteria just need an opportunity, such as a weakened immune system or injury to the gut (or a surgical site), to cause disease. There has been an increased focus in recent years on prevention instead of having to treat disease. To that end, many veterinarians prefer using local treatments (rather than systemic drugs) and allowing the animal’s immune system to help with the healing process. Today, many equine surgeons do not treat every incision infection with systemic antibiotics. Often, they just use local treatment—opening up any pockets of infection and allowing these to drain, and the horse is able to heal itself. This is sometimes preferable to using an antibiotic. Some veterinarians now feel that every time an antibiotic is used, it puts selection pressure on the bacteria, with only the ones resistant to the drug surviving. All the susceptible ones are killed. Thus, every time a horse receives antibiotic treatment, a more resistant population of bacteria results. Another issue with horses is that their GI tract requires “good” bacteria to help ferment and break down their food. The GI tract is therefore very sensitive to antibiotics. If antibiotic treatment kills off too many of the normal, helpful bacteria, the horse will have other problems. There is a fine line to walk on treatment.

Know what you are treating, or not treating Before beginning antibiotic treatment, it’s important to have a proper diagnosis. Many viral infections resolve themselves with supportive care and without antibiotics. The antibiotic won’t kill the virus and is a waste of money. When a veterinarian prescribes a course of antibiotics, it should be given at proper dosage and schedule and the entire course needs to be completed. The owner needs to make sure that the animal actually consumes the entire amount (if it’s a pill), even if he or she has to use a dose syringe rather than put it in the feed. Sub-therapeutic dosing or missing a dose may allow the stronger bacteria to survive and this can lead to future issues with bacterial resistance. Dr. Josie Traub-Dargatz, professor of equine medicine at Colorado State University, says horse owners should use antimicrobial drugs judiciously to avoid encouraging the increase of resistant organisms.


Denis Blake


The improper use or overuse of antibiotics can be detrimental not just to an individual horse but also to the entire population of horses. “We don’t have very many up-and-coming drugs in the pipeline if bacteria become resistant to the ones we now have available,” she said. “Horse owners should work with a veterinarian in deciding what is needed and which antimicrobials to begin treatment with. I believe it’s appropriate to select a drug that’s worked before in a certain type of case, such as a bacterial respiratory infection, without having to do a culture on every animal. But if the horse fails to respond or has severe disease, you need to work with your veterinarian to more critically assess the treatment plan.” Horse owners need to be aware of the problem of antimicrobial resistance and the need for responsible use of antimicrobials for the conditions they are treating. “Rely on your veterinarian for the best advice on antimicrobial usage in your area,” Dr. Santschi advised. “Don’t use the 10 tablets (that you still have sitting on the shelf) for the next horse at a later date. Check with your veterinarian first to see if that’s a reasonable thing to do.” In many cases, it’s best to try to isolate the organism (for proper diagnosis) before treating an infection. “It’s not always possible to culture a ‘bug’ if the animal was treated with antibiotics before a sample is taken—in spite of the fact the antibiotics don’t seem to be getting the job done,” Dr. Santschi said. “For serious infections— including things like joints and tendon sheaths—it’s wise to get a sample before antimicrobial therapy is started, so we have some idea what’s there. If

we just put the horse on a drug, the likelihood that we could grow the bug later if we need to would be much lower.” Dr. Scott Weese, a professor at the University of Guelph’s Ontario Veterinary College, says that all too often the person treating a horse chooses the most powerful antibiotic to treat an infection, when a more common drug would do the job. This practice is not only expensive, but dangerous, because the pathogens in the body may become resistant to that antibiotic, leading to future infections that are more difficult to treat. “It’s important to reduce antibiotic use, using these drugs only when we really need them,” he advised. “We shouldn’t use antibiotics for viral infections. It’s also wise to get cultures to know what you are dealing with. If there’s a wound infection, we can treat it with antibiotics or we can culture it first. If it does have a bacterial infection then we can start treating it more quickly with the proper antibiotic, which will give us a better outcome. Getting cultures earlier is important in reducing antibiotic use.” Just as with human patients, it pays to resist the temptation to simply find the most powerful drug to “knock out” the problem. Instead, a more prudent course of action starts with a quick and accurate diagnosis, including a determination of whether the problem is viral or bacterial. If antibiotics are needed, they should be used judiciously and properly dosed to ensure a complete recovery, both for the short- and long-term.

“It’s important to reduce antibiotic use, using these drugs only when we really need them. We shouldn’t use antibiotics for viral infections.” – Dr. Scott Weese 28

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Several kinds of Staphylococcus bacteria exist, including S. aureus that is normally found in the nose of about 30 percent of healthy humans and about 10 percent of horses. These bacteria are opportunists, waiting for a chance to multiply. They usually cause no problems in a healthy body because the immune system keeps them in check. If the person or horse becomes injured or sick, however, these pathogens can take advantage of weakened defenses and cause infection. There are several strains of S. aureus. Some are susceptible to certain antibiotics and some are resistant. S. aureus is categorized as either methicillinresistant (MRSA) or methicillin-susceptible (MSSA). The MRSA strains are resistant to all antibiotics in the family that includes methicillin (some of the common antimicrobials such as penicillins and cephalosporins). Some strains of MRSA are resistant to other antimicrobials as well, which makes these infections more difficult to treat. According to Dr. Scott Weese at the University of Guelph’s Ontario Veterinary College, studies in North America and Europe have confirmed that MRSA is present in the nose, intestinal tract or skin of approximately 10 percent of healthy horses, but on some farms more than 50 percent of the horses may carry MRSA. Most horses that become colonized with MRSA do not have an active infection, but they are at higher risk for infection if they become stressed, injured or sick. “MRSA also seems somewhat geographic—particularly the incidence of antibiotic-associated diarrhea in horses,” said Dr. Elizabeth Santschi at The Ohio State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. “There are drugs that are safe to use in horses in the Midwest that are not safe to use in Southern California, for instance.” The “bugs” in different regions don’t have the same resistance problems. “It’s related to the flora in your horse’s GI tract, and there’s also individual susceptibility that may be different from horse to horse,” she explained. “You could give a certain antibiotic to 10 horses, and one of them gets diarrhea. “We warn people about this when horses are put on antibiotics, but many horses handle antibiotics safely, with very few consequences,” she added. “Most loose bowel movements resolve once the antibiotic is halted. Once in awhile we run into overgrowth of a particularly virulent pathogen—such as Clostridium difficile or Salmonella—that can be a serious situation that may cause a horse’s death.”

Researchers say methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is present in about 10 percent of healthy horses, but the prevalence and treatment options can vary by geographic location.


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Trainer Continuing Education Survey Results Trainer Continuing Education (CE) was discussed at the National HBPA’s 2013 Winter Convention in Florida and subsequently a CE survey was printed in the summer issue of The Horsemen’s Journal. There is currently an existing Association of Racing Commissioners International (RCI) model rule requiring four hours of CE. The Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit (WSS) Education and Licensing Committee asked the NHBPA and other horsemen’s groups that are or could be affected by this CE requirement for feedback from trainers and owners regarding CE topics, cost, amount of CE and instructional media options. Following are selected answers from the CE survey of NHBPA members.

How many years have you been a licensed trainer? Less than 1 year 2.6% 1-5 years 7.7% 5-10 years 7.7% 10+ years 64.1% I have never been a licensed trainer 17.9%

Which of the following subjects would you be interested in learning more about? (please select all that apply)

Lameness 75.5% Colic 53.1% Bleeding/EIPH 81.6% Tying up 67.3% Treatment of wounds 38.8% Nutrition and feeding 69.4% Shoeing and hoof care 61.2% Dental care 32.7% Reading the condition book 32.7% Workers’ comp 44.9% Billing and accounting 38.8% Tack and equipment 34.7% Immigration issues 42.9% How to grow your business 40.8% Track surfaces 65.3% Other 12.2%

100% 80% 60% 40% 20%


How many hours of Continuing Education should be required each year?

0 12.2% 1 hour 0.0% 2-4 hours 46.9% More than 4 hours 40.8%


HJ Winter


How much would you be willing to pay for Continuing Education programs?

Free 22.2% No more than $5 per credit hour 15.6% No more than $10 per credit hour 26.7% Depends on the course and the teacher 35.6%

How would you prefer to receive Continuing Education? (select all that apply) 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30%

Via computer/online 79.6% Via live teacher in a “classroom� setting 42.9% Via CD/DVD 12.2% Other 10.2%

20% 10% 0%

Do you own a computer or other device, such as an iPad or smartphone, to access Continuing Education on the web?

Yes, I own a computer or iPad or smartphone No, I do not own a computer or iPad but I have easy access to one No, I do not own a computer or iPad and I do not have access to one

98.0% 0.0% 2.0%

Should there be a per start minimum for the requirement of Continuing Education in a particular state? (For example, you must start six horses before you are required to take CE).

Yes No

10.4% 89.6%




First and Goal for Horse R a c i n g ’s International Riders

Ackerley Images

How Donegal Racing founder J e r r y C r a w f o r d a n d t h e N a t i o n a l HBPA a r e w o r k i n g t o achieve spor ts visas for international exercise riders B y W i l l i a m Ve l i e a n d C r a i g M c D o u g a l 34

HJ Winter


Ackerley Images

Professional poker and video game players have been granted “athlete” visas, so the horse racing industry is working to get that same status for exercise riders

For much of the last year and a half, the founder of Donegal Racing, Jerry Crawford, with the support of the National HBPA and National Thoroughbred Racing Association, has pressed the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to grant visa status as athletes to exercise riders. Through their hard work, the horse racing industry hopes to soon reach the goal line of achieving labor stability for many of its valuable international workers. At present, exercise riders are considered unskilled laborers and are allowed only visas that last no more than just a few months. Through Crawford’s tireless efforts, along with NHBPA President and Chairperson of the Board Robin Richards and CEO Phil Hanrahan, exercise riders should soon be granted athlete visas that are valid for up to five years conditioned upon the athlete’s continued employment with a recognized horse trainer. In the Alice in Wonderland world of federal bureaucracy, recently both professional poker players and video game players have been granted professional athlete visas by USCIS while exercise riders, who are some of the best athletes in the world, are denied this classification. With the ongoing crackdown on employers who hire unauthorized workers, it is vital for the horse racing industry to achieve viable solutions for its trainers to legally employ its essential athletes. Given that USCIS is approving non-athletes such as card players and virtual e-gamers, there is no clear reason that the classification should not be granted to horse racing athletes as well. In addition to the P Visa classification, the horse racing industry has been working to ensure consistency in the approval of H-2B laborer visas for its grooms and hot walkers. The following are talking points that Crawford and the staff at Horseman Labor Solutions have submitted to several senators and congressmen who are strong advocates of the horse racing industry:

Dear Senator/Representative _________: Enclosed please find information regarding the urgent need that the American horse racing industry and American horse trainers have for USCIS approval of P-1A Athletic Visas to international exercise riders and why H-2Bs should be awarded to trainers who train in two different locations. Both requests contained herein are supported by current regulation and can be implemented through proper interpretation by USCIS of regulation that is already in effect. Unless these changes are made, horse racing will be crippled and trainers will continue to be harassed and be publicly embarrassed. The industry has undertaken significant steps to solve its labor shortage problem. Unfortunately, the positive impact these programs have had do not completely remove the need for foreign labor to fill the shortages in critical positions. The horse industry’s positive impact on the U.S. economy is without question. In a study completed in 2005 (the impact would be greater now), Deloitte Consulting LLP concluded that the total impact of the U.S. horse industry is $101.5 billion. In terms of the overall horse industry, 33 percent of the total economic impact is generated by racing. In addition, 383,826 (2005 numbers) Americans (and to a much lesser extent immigrants) are employed full time in the racing industry.



Efforts within the Industry to Hire U.S. Workers The entire horse racing industry in the United States has come together to find solutions to the labor shortage that has plagued the industry for years. Through free educational programs, the United States horse racing industry is making significant efforts at its own cost to recruit and train Americans to fill foundational level jobs essential to the industry. The Groom Elite program trains any willing participants at no cost throughout the United States at tracks, high schools, community colleges and correctional facilities. The Groom Elite program offers to train Americans at no cost to them to take groom positions in the horse industry.

THE HORSE INDUSTRY’S ReQUEST The horse industry is looking for two specific clarifications in current regulation that will help fill critical positions: (1) recognition of exercise riders as athletes eligible for P-1 Visas and (2) clarification that the definition of “temporary need” for H-2B status shall be determined by the specific location in the H-2B application and not all locations for the employer in the aggregate.

WHY P-1 Current regulation requires P-1 athletes to be coming to the U.S. to “compete.” Exercise riders should be included in this category through a proper interpretation of the term “compete,” because exercise riders are the essential athletes that prepare the horse for competition. Exercise riders are clearly integral and essential to their team’s competition and have corollaries in other sports whose similar athletes are granted P-1A Athlete Visas, such as practice team players in the NFL and team members in theatrical ice skating productions. USCIS’ current overly narrow interpretation of competition for the horse racing industry unnecessarily disqualifies athletes that are arguably more essential to the competitive chances of the horse racing team than any other athlete. By clarifying that exercise riders qualify for P-1A Athlete status, these athletes would be eligible for visas that more closely align with the realities of the sport. The benefits and reasons include:

Recognizing that exercise riders are athletes and not simply unskilled workers. The H-2B Visa (the only other option for most employers) is primarily for unskilled workers. No employer would hire an unskilled exercise rider to handle horses worth many thousands to millions of dollars. Beyond the danger to the horse, the athlete is in danger without the skill necessary to handle these animals. The skill and physical ability necessary to ride a Thoroughbred horse at over 40 mph proves definitively that exercise riders are athletes.

Longer duration than H-2B and H-2A Visas which match how the sport works. Horses do not race once, but instead build up toward top races (for example, the Kentucky Derby is for the top 3-year-olds). Trust between an exercise rider and horse is built during the time the exercise rider is on the horse. The horse’s instincts on race day come from hours with the exercise rider perfecting such details as starting out of the gate, pace, acceleration toward the finish line and running in the traffic of the other horses in the race.

Itinerary work allowed. The horse racing industry moves from track to track throughout the calendar year. Granting P Visa status would allow critical athletes to move with the race schedule. 36

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Other major sports are granted P-1 visas for practice squad players. At present, other major sports, for example the NFL, are granted P-1 Visas for athletes who are strictly practice squad players and do not participate directly in the competition. The same rationale for granting these practice squad players visas applies to granting exercise riders the same status. In both instances the contributions of the practice squad members are essential to the success of the team.

Team members of theatrical ice skating productions are granted P Visas. This is based on their membership on the team regardless of their achievement level. Exercise riders play a similar role in the athletic performance of trainer-led horse racing teams as many of the supporting cast of ice skating teams perform.

Non-athletic industries granted athlete visas by USCIS. USCIS has exercised wide discretion in interpreting P-1A regulations to grant several non-athletic industries approval as P-1A athletes. In 2006, USCIS began granting P-1A Athlete Visas to professional poker players, and in summer 2013 USCIS began granting P-1A Athlete Visas to professional video game players. While the horse racing industry does not object to USCIS’ expansion of P-1A Athlete Visas to non-athletic activities, it respectfully requests and urges USCIS to accord at least equal deference to the absolutely athletic activities of horse riders, including exercise riders who are an essential component of a horse trainer’s racing team.

H-2B Visas Starting in approximately March 2011, the Vermont Service Center (VSC) reinterpreted the definition of “temporary need” in the H-2B regulations to prohibit employers from filing H-2B petitions for separate areas of intended employment. The new interpretation was issued without notice or comment and departed from long-standing USCIS and Department of Labor (DOL) interpretation of the term. Historically, USCIS and DOL have agreed on the definition of “temporary need.” An employer would not have a year-round need if the employer filed an H-2B petition (labor certification application and I-129 petition) for different job duties or for the same job duties in a different “area of intended employment.” DOL and the California Service Center (CSC) continue to follow such an interpretation. Provided an H-2B petition is truly in different areas of intended employment, the application would not be considered to create a year-round need. The horse trainers move to different locations at the conclusion of the racing season in Louisville, Kentucky. Despite competing at the exact same location, two were approved and two denied. In contrast, horse trainers receive no denials from DOL and USCIS CSC. Clarifying the definition would settle the problem raised by VSC’s new interpretation and bring VSC back in line with DOL and CSC. The common approach throughout the H-2B regulations is to focus on the employer’s area of intended employment to the exclusion of operations outside the area of intended employment. Examples include:

Prevailing Wage. The prevailing wage rate is defined as the average wage paid to similarly employed workers in a specific occupation in the area of intended employment, not all areas within the U.S.

Recruitment. Employers must recruit U.S. workers through filing a state job order with the State Workforce Agency (SWA) serving the area of intended employment and publishing two print advertisements with the paper of major circulation covering the area of intended employment, which is in contrast to even the H-2A regulations, which require newspaper advertisements in areas designated by DOL.

Terms of Employment. The employer is offering terms and working conditions normal to U.S. workers similarly employed in the area of intended employment.

No Lay-offs. The employer has not laid off and will not lay off any similarly employed U.S. worker…in the area of intended employment within the period beginning 120 days before the date of need.

Place of Employment. The employer will not place any H-2B workers outside the area of intended employment listed on the Application for Temporary Employment Certification unless the employer has obtained a new temporary labor certification from the Department. An approach that distinguishes different areas of intended employment would promote transparency and further the spirit of the H-2B program. Such an approach is the simplest and most transparent approach to achieve the primary goal of the H-2B program—recruiting and hiring qualified U.S. workers.

The definition of “temporary need” can vary depending on where an H-2B visa is processed, and that can be problematic for trainers and grooms.

Finally, we must call your attention to the dangerous suggestion of the Department of Justice (DOJ) in Brown Racing Stable et al v. Napolitano et al, Case No. 2:2011cv04892 (E.D. NY 2011). In a settlement between DOJ and horse trainers from New York, the government agreed that trainers could continue to file H-2B petitions in multiple locations as long as the trainers would set up different companies for each separate filing. The Vermont Service Center has further perpetuated the dangerous idea of creating these shell companies. DOL opposes such a structure for obvious reasons—the employing entity should be transparent for easier oversight. All the New York trainers that were part of the lawsuit had their H-2B Visas approved, while horse trainers outside of New York continue to have H-2B petitions (based on identical facts) denied. Bringing the Vermont Service Center back in line with DOL’s interpretation and the California Service Center’s interpretation (temporary need being defined by job duties or location) eliminates the need for DOJ’s suggested end-run around the current regulations and instead leaving a very simple straightforward process—one employer/separate H-2B petitions for each job and each job location.

Denis Blake

Timeline of the Reduction in Access to All Visas by USCIS toward the Horse Racing Industry Since 2008, for unknown reasons, USCIS has steadily removed viable access to work visas for horse trainers and riders.

2008: USCIS and DOL published regulations that associations representing the horse racing industry could no longer file H-2B petitions on behalf of its trainer members. Prior to this ruling, Canterbury Park, for example, would pool its trainers who need visas for the summer meet and submit a blanket petition for each trainer who signed a letter attesting to their need and acknowledging their duties to provide designated wages and hours. The associations were able to substantially reduce filing and advertising costs by filing a single petition for all the trainers participating in the specific meet. 2011: USCIS Vermont Service Center determined that trainers who race in multiple distinct locations throughout the year have a year-round need and are not eligible to participate in the H-2B program at all. This determination is in direct contravention to DOL, which determines that temporary need is determined by location. So, for example, if a trainer races at Canterbury in Minnesota in the summer and Turf Paradise in Arizona in the winter, this does not constitute a year-round need. The California Service Center, which has jurisdiction over the western half of the United States, agrees with DOL and still approves H-2B Visas for trainers who race in multiple locations. 2012: USCIS Vermont Service Center has drastically narrowed the number of approvals it issues for horse riders. Jockeys and riders who have easily qualified for years are now being denied as not qualified under regulations. Evidence such as victories in distinguished races in the United States and abroad are now considered not distinguished enough. William Velie and Craig McDougal are attorneys with Horseman Labor Solutions, an immigration services company that represents horsemen throughout the United States in immigration matters. Horseman Labor Solutions, a sponsor of the National HBPA, can be reached online at or by phone at (877) 678-RACE.



Seeking the Finish Line on Laminitis Courtesy Don Preisler, UC Davis

UC Davis continues to work on a possible solution for the deadly disease

By Kimberly French

Dr. Alonso Guedes, with the Thoroughbred mare Hulahalla, is attacking laminitis with an experimental drug called t-TUCB

Of all the news that could come out of the field of veterinary research, a cure or effective treatment for laminitis would be at or near the top of the list for both horsemen and researchers. While no such announcement is likely to happen anytime soon, researchers at the University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine did publish a news release last November regarding their study of the experimental drug t-TUCB to treat the onset of laminitis and their plans to conduct a clinical trial. The actual paper on the study was published online in March by Veterinary Anaesthesia and Analgesia and subsequently in the journal’s July issue. “This is an unusual step for us to announce this so far in advance, but because euthanasia is often the only way to alleviate pain in severe laminitis, we felt that it was important to let the veterinarians and horse owners know that this compound has shown potential as a treatment,” said Dr. Alonso Guedes, an assistant professor in the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine and lead author of the paper. The study chronicles the use of t-TUCB on the then 4-year-old Thoroughbred mare Hulahalla. After sustaining a tendon injury, the racehorse was retired and donated to the college. She was a participant in another research project on stem cell therapy when she developed laminitis in her left foreleg. 38

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Hulahalla was treated by the most modern therapies currently available, including antibiotics, leg wraps, cold therapy, steroids and phenylbutazone, but her condition showed no signs of subsiding after seven days. According to Dr. Guedes, by that point, the mare was mostly lying in her stall, had an extremely high blood pressure and her pain was assessed to be a 9.5 on their visual analog scale of from zero to 10. Due to the disease’s progression, the veterinarians began to consider euthanizing Hulahalla. As a last resort, Dr. Guedes decided to administer t-TUCB. The main component of this drug is a soluble epoxide hydrolase inhibitor (sEH) that was discovered four decades ago by Dr. Bruce Hammock, a distinguished professor in the UC Davis Department of Entomology. Since Dr. Hammock’s discovery, he has expanded upon his research and discerned sEH does have anti-inflammatory processes in mice and rats. Dr. Guedes’ use of the drug, however, was the first occasion it had been used on a horse or mammal of the same nature. On the eighth day of her illness, Hulahalla was given an intravenous dose of the drug and within 24 hours showed visual improvement by standing in her stall as well as appearing interested in what was transpiring around her. After four more days of treatment, the mare’s blood pressure returned to normal, her pain scores dropped drastically and she showed no side effects from the

t-TUCB. Remarkably, Hulahalla has not endured any further episodes of the illness, which is known to return and has a roughly 25 percent survival rate. Today, she remains laminitis free at age 6. “I first became aware of these compounds when Bruce came to speak at Texas A&M University, where I was an assistant professor,” Dr. Guedes said. “I was working with analgesics in laminitic horses at the time. It just made biological sense to me that compounds could provide modulation of inflammation and pain relief in horses with laminitis. Our labs started collaborating and what we have been able to learn is much in line with our original thoughts.” Dr. Hammock, who has more than 800 peer-reviewed research publications and 100 patents to his credit, claims Dr. Guedes deserves all of the accolades for this study with equine laminitis. But clearly Dr. Hammock devoted much time, energy and intellect to detailing the characteristics and proficiency of sEH for medical purposes. In a 2011 article published in Pain Manage, Hammock and two colleagues describe how effective and exciting sEH inhibitors could be for the future of pain management for not only horses but in human medicine. “The sEH inhibitors have been shown to reduce inflammation with greater potency than NSAIDs in a number of models and actually to synergize with aspirin, NSAIDs and COXIBs,” he wrote. “The sEH inhibitors are more effective than morphine in relieving some pain conditions. Unlike many opiates, there is no reduction to pain perception in the absence of a facilitated pain state,

there is no detectable change of behaviour or sedation and there is limited hypoalgesia. However, the high potency and efficacy of sEH inhibitors in multiple pain models raises the hope that sEH inhibitors, as well as natural epoxidized fatty acids and mimics, can be developed as effective pain management tools.” Although much of the information available on sEH inhibitors is extremely technical and difficult for a layman to understand without perusing medical dictionaries, Hammock attempts to break it down for those who aren’t comfortable with the scientific terminology. “Alonso is the brains of this (operation),” he said. “We are only his helpers. All of the lab papers on this are in PDF files on or biopestlab. com. Most are pretty technical, but the epoxides of arachidonic acid (omega 6) and EPA and DHA are anti-hyperintensive and anti-inflammatory, and they reduce pain. They balance the COX and LOX metabolites of arachidonate-like prostaglandins that are pro-inflammatory and cause pain and hypertension. By inhibiting the soluble epoxide hydrolase, the epoxides (anti-inflammatory compounds) go up and the pro-inflammatory or diol products go down. The full mechanism is not known, but it reduces NFKb signalling and the usual inflammatory cytokines.” While that explanation might not be easy for the layman to follow, Dr. Hammock sums it up, “One can think of them as an aspirin or Advil acting to increase anti-inflammatory compounds while aspirin and Advil decrease inflammatory compounds.”

Courtesy UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine

Hulahalla’s pain was assessed to be 9.5 out of 10 and euthanasia appeared to be the only option until t-TUCB was administered



Courtesy UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine

Laminitis means inflammation of the laminae, and although great strides have been made in recent years to fully understand this disease, there are still far too many things the veterinary world does not know about the ailment. Based on a research paper by Dr. Peter Huntington, the director of nutrition for the Kentucky Equine Research Project in Victoria, Australia; Dr. Chris Pollitt, creator of the Australian Equine Laminitis Research Unit in Queensland, Australia; and Dr. Catherine McGowan of the Department of Equine and Small Animal Medicine, University of Helsinki, Finland, at this time, there are five theories as to how a horse contracts laminitis: • The enzymatic theory • The inflammatory theory • The vascular theory • The metabolic/endocrine theory • The mechanical/traumatic theory Although many in the field suspect there may be links between these five hypotheses as to why a horse contracts laminitis, it is fairly widely accepted that the disease does involve an increase in inflammatory cytokines. Cytokines are substances released by the cells that send messages to other cells within the immune system. There are two types of inflammatory cytokines: pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory. One set tells the immune system to produce antibodies and the other signals them to remain dormant. Since both cytokines work in tandem to balance out the immune system, many researchers refer to them as simply inflammatory cytokines.


HJ Winter


Hulahalla, now age 6, currently shows no signs of laminitis two years after treatment

A study published in the September edition of Equine Veterinary Journal and led by Dr. Nicola Menzies-Gow, a senior lecturer in equine medicine at the Royal College of Veterinary Medicine in London, England, could be the precursor or at least a base for shedding new light on how pro-inflammatory and antiinflammatory cytokines respond in a laminitic horse, as most specialists in the field thought the disease was characterized by an increase in pro-inflammatory cytokines. “There were significant effects of season, gender and bodyweight on the number of pro-inflammatory mediators or markers of inflammation,” she wrote. “The only marker influenced by laminitis status was adiponectin and concentrations of this anti-inflammatory marker were lower in previously laminitic animals. Recurrent laminitis may be associated with reduced antiinflammatory capacity rather than a pro-inflammatory state.” Dr. Menzies-Gow advised that before this theory could be given any substantial weight it must be backed by more thorough research results with more stringent methods. Adiponectin is a hormone produced by fat cells that plays a role in glucose regulation, fat breakdown and a cytokine (TNF-a) that encourages inflammation. In humans, adiponectin levels are low in cases of obesity and metabolic syndrome. In this study, the animals that had recovered from previous bouts of laminitis possessed low adiponectin levels. As far as the future of t-TUCB, Dr. Guedes and his colleagues commenced with their first clinical trial for the substance this summer. It is too early to determine anything concrete, but Drs. Guedes and Hammock are very optimistic about the future of the drug and what it could possibly do for laminitic horses. “Alonso is a champion,” Dr. Hammock said. “We are working very hard to get this to the clinic, but it is never easy to translate the work.”

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Views and opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the opinion or policy of the publisher or National HBPA board or staff. Alabama HBPA The Alabama HBPA will be holding elections this December. Nominations for the president and board member positions were taken at our general meeting in September. We have selected an accounting firm to oversee the sending and receiving of ballots to avoid any concerns about the validity of the election process. Should you receive a ballot, please take the time to vote. The Alabama HBPA is continuing to pursue the appropriation of funding from the Birmingham Racing Commission for a study on the feasibility of returning live Thoroughbred racing to Birmingham Race Course. Alabama HBPA Executive Secretary Nancy Delony has worked diligently to procure proposals from three reputable companies and was to present these to the Birmingham Racing Commission at the November 20 meeting. The executive secretary for the Birmingham Racing Commission has indicated that the funding for the study is not in question and that the Commission is supportive of a feasibility study. Based on those statements, a company should be selected and the project funded at the November 20 meeting. We will keep the horsemen and horsewomen informed. Updates will be posted on the Alabama HBPA website at The Alabama-bred Thoroughbred races were to be held at Fair Grounds Race Course on December 7. The Kudzu Stakes was for 2-year-olds with a purse of $25,000, and the Magic City Stakes was for 3-year-olds and up with a purse of $50,000.

Arizona HBPA Turf Paradise Turf Paradise opened for the 2013-2014 season on Saturday, October 5. Opening day was one of the biggest with attendance and handle being the best we have experienced in 15 years. More than 8,000 fans came out to enjoy the good weather and festivities. The feature race, the Bienvenidos Stakes, was won by Absolutely Cool, owned by Karl Krieg, trained by Valorie Lund and ridden by Rocco Bowen. Bob Beaubien, track superintendent at Turf Paradise for the last several years, left in late October to work at Delta Downs. Gary Kretschmer has now joined the staff at Turf Paradise as track superintendent. Gary comes with years of experience working for Steve Woods in California. The Arizona HBPA enjoyed working with Bob. We wish him the best at his new job and look forward to working with Gary. There have already been changes made for training hours. The training track will now be open seven days a week, taking a break from 7:30 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. Turf Paradise, like many other tracks, is experiencing a shortage of horses and veterinarians. In spite of the shortage of horses, we have been able to card races and maintain our number of racing days to date. Arizona HBPA President Lloyd Yother and Executive Director Tom Metzen have been working with track management to resolve many of the horsemen’s issues; however, they have not come up with a resolution to the lack of veterinarians. The Arizona HBPA and Turf Paradise again hosted a Thanksgiving feast for backstretch workers and employees on Wednesday, November 27, in the Turf Paradise clubhouse. Dr. Brokaw is back again this year in the medical clinic. Clinic hours are Thursday, Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. No appointment is necessary. Check out our new website at

HBPA Office Hours Live Race Days: 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Dark Days: Weekdays 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Check Cashing Live Race Days: 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Checks must be approved by the Arizona HBPA.

Arkansas HBPA The Arkansas HBPA and Oaklawn Park have been busy preparing for the 2014 season. The demand for stall space at Oaklawn, which opened its barn area November 11, has never been higher as horsemen from coast to coast are clamoring to come to Hot Springs for the 2014 race meet, which will offer a record $20 million in purses between January 10 and April 12. Among the horsemen allotted stalls for the season are five-time leading trainer Steve Asmussen, Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas, Kenny McPeek, Dale Romans, Steve Hobby, Donnie K. Von Hemel and newcomers Mark Casse, Rusty Arnold and Kellyn Gorder. Highlighting the 57-day meet is one of the most lucrative and productive Triple Crown trails in the country that culminates April 12 with the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1). Last season, eventual Travers Stakes (G1) winner and Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) runner-up Will Take Charge won the Smarty Jones and Rebel (G3) stakes, while his stablemate Oxbow finished second in the Rebel and was unplaced in the Arkansas Derby before winning the Preakness Stakes (G1). Overall, Oaklawn will offer 31 stakes in 2014, 19 of which received a purse increase. The minimum purse for all open stakes races was increased from $60,000 to $100,000, while the minimum purse for state-bred stakes was increased from $60,000 to $75,000. Additionally, Oaklawn is returning to a more traditional Racing Festival of the South schedule with stakes races once again extending over the final two weekends of the meet. The $400,000 Fantasy Stakes (G3) for 3-year-old fillies on the Kentucky Oaks (G1) path will now be held Saturday, April 5, after anchoring a Wednesday program the last two years. The Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (G3) has had its purse increased from $250,000 to $300,000 and will return to its traditional Thursday spot on April 10. In addition to the Arkansas Derby, the April 12 closing day card will also feature the $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap (G2), $100,000 Northern Spur Stakes and the $100,000 Instant Racing Stakes. Horsemen and fans alike will be greeted by a new public entrance off of Central Avenue in 2014. In August, Oaklawn began the initial stage of a $20 million, 50,000 square foot expansion to its gaming area. This phase included the new entrance as well as rerouting of water and power lines. The current work will cease December 24 and will not resume until after the race meet. Once complete, the new games will allow Oaklawn to generate even more purses for our horsemen. The Arkansas HBPA is getting ready to begin the racing season at Oaklawn, and our office is open and ready to begin work. Our medical clinic, which is so fortunate to again have the services of Dr. Kyle Roper and his wife, Jane, along with Loretta Brennan and all of the others who help out, will be attending to the medical needs of everyone who visits the clinic during the Oaklawn meet. The clinic will be open Tuesday and Wednesday, dropping the Monday hours, and we will open the clinic the first week in January.




Christmas will be here soon, and again this year the Arkansas HBPA will partner with the Arkansas Race Track Chaplaincy for our annual Christmas dinner for the backside. Our party this year has been scheduled for Thursday, December 12, at 6 p.m. in the Oaklawn track kitchen. Santa will be there! We will have a meal and cupcakes for dessert. Every child will receive a gift and 40-50 adults will receive a gift as well. Adults will be given a ticket, and we draw for the gifts. Everyone will leave with a goodie bag with candy, gloves, etc. It is always a great time to kick off Oaklawn 2014.

Charles Town HBPA Fall in Charles Town brings beautiful colors to our mountains, and the calendar becomes full of activities. The Eastern Panhandle Free Clinic invited our backstretch workers to participate in a CTHBPA President Randy Funkhouser gets his flu shot. free eye screening provided by the WVU Eye Institute. Anyone needing glasses paid $10 and received a voucher to get their glasses from the local Allegany Optical Store. As a community service project, Walgreens was on hand to provide flu shots to those who wanted to receive the inoculation. The CTHBPA also sponsored a Flu Shot Clinic in our office provided by the Jefferson County Health Department with approximately 64 members from the backstretch coming in for shots. October 19 was the 27th running of the West Virginia Breeders Classics. Congratulations to all of the winning owners and trainers. At this writing, our track kitchen owner Darlene Hostler and her staff were already planning their Thanksgiving Day dinner for our backstretch personnel. As a member of the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce, we participate in meetings and events. Open house events are conducted by many businesses throughout the county. On December 3, we opened our doors for the first time to invite local businesses to visit and learn what the CTHBPA provides to our community and to our horsemen and horsewomen.

Among the 45 classes at the annual horse show was the costume class including this Wizard of Oz entry with Jordan Schneider as Dorothy, Chelsea Dunkelberger as the Scarecrow, Ryan Moore as the Tin Man and Jordan’s pony Serena as the Lion. 44

HJ Winter


Chaplain’s News and Updates This year’s Backstretch Family Picnic was the largest attended in the history of the event. There was plenty of good fellowship, good

food and horseshoe competitions. The playground and moon bounce were filled with children, who also had an opportunity to have their faces painted and receive balloons twisted into animal characters. The finale of the day was the auction where lots of interesting items were sold. For the first time ever, the chaplaincy is sponsoring English as a Second Language with 24 students registered in September. The 8th annual horse show was held in October with 45 classes of English and Western competition and timed events, as well as classes just for fun. At Christmas, the chaplaincy will have the annual children’s party. From our affiliate to your affiliate and to the National HBPA, may you have a very happy and blessed holiday.

Florida HBPA The Florida Dates War Drags On The Florida Dates War between Calder Race Course and Gulfstream Park, which began July 1, continued through the end of October with no end in sight. As laid out in detail in the last issue of The Horsemen’s Journal, we currently have Calder operating alone on Friday and both Calder and Gulfstream operating concurrently on Saturday and Sunday. We have examined the results of this “war” from every possible angle and have concluded that while everyone is “losing” to some extent, Calder seems to be the biggest loser. Gulfstream is winning the war by having the majority of Calder’s best barns residing at and racing primarily at Gulfstream, but then Gulfstream has overpaid purses significantly while Calder has not. The horsemen, while inconvenienced by often running at both tracks on the same day and only racing three days a week, are actually the winners in that they are racing for more total purse money, $2,335,733, than they did for the same four-month period last year. Last year, Calder ran 76 race days and paid out $16,096,575, or $211,797 per day. This year, Gulfstream and Calder/Tropical have combined to race 88 race days and paid out $18,432,308, or surprisingly, a very similar $209,458 per day. During its 51 race days during the dates war, Calder/Tropical paid average overnights of $115,663 and average Florida Owner Awards (FOAs) of $8,350 for total average overnights of $124,013 and total purses paid of $9,379,708, or total daily purses of $183,916. Meanwhile, Gulfstream raced 37 days and paid average overnights of $201,216 and average FOAs of $9,503 for total average overnights of $210,719 and total purses paid of $9,052,600, or total daily purses of $244,665. For comparison, during the same fourmonth period last year, Calder alone paid average overnights of $144,075 and average FOAs of $11,998 for total average overnights of $156,063. Last year, Calder averaged 7.20 starters per race during this four-month period, and this year actually exceeded, although not by much, that average with 7.26 starters per race. Gulfstream topped Calder’s starters per race by having average starters per race of 7.76, but after getting off to a slow start, their starters per race were 8.08 after August 31. When one compares total handle on the live product, it’s pretty evident Gulfstream is “winning” the war. Calder’s live handle on their three-day race weeks is $58,165,920, while Gulfstream’s handle on their two-day race weeks plus an opening day Monday and the Fourth of July is $84,755,449. The actual head-to-head numbers, which would be a comparison of Saturdays and Sundays only, is even more lopsided in Gulfstream’s favor with Calder’s weekend handle of $37,478,938 more than doubled by Gulfstream’s $76,238,344 in live wagering handle.


The Dog and Pony Show Last winter, the Florida Legislature commissioned a $400,000 Gambling Impact Study by Spectrum Gaming Group. The results of this 708-page study were released partially in June with the final version out in late October. With the Spectrum Group being a gaming industry expert, we were quite concerned that it might suggest having slots throughout the state of Florida and not just at seven of the state’s 27 pari-mutuel facilities. While the study concluded that the parimutuels in general in Florida are not nearly as healthy as they were 30 or Retired racehorse Poco Chico proved to be quite 40 years ago, the popular, as he was photographed with Senator Charlie study made it clear Dean, Representative Katie Edwards and a group of Thoroughbred horsemen, including owner Carlo that Thoroughbred Vaccarezza (top, far left). racing was the one pari-mutuel that was still relying on its core racing product to survive and not just the slots. Upon the release of the entire Spectrum study, the Florida Senate Gaming Committee then decided to travel to four locations in the state to garner local testimonies and perspectives regarding the Spectrum study’s view of the future impact of gambling on the state. The Senate also hoped to get a general sense of the overall feelings of the state’s residents about different aspects of the gambling industry. The first and largest public hearing on gambling took place at Broward College’s Coconut Creek campus on October 23, and about 90 people spoke on various topics dealing with gambling. Besides all the Senators who were present, there were a number of State Representatives, local mayors and other elected officials in the auditorium. The dog tracks want to “decouple” from dog racing and just have a card room and slots parlor, an idea we fear may be looked at closely by a horse racetrack or two. Many spoke in favor of dog decoupling because they were


I don’t know how long this dates war will last, but it’s scheduled to continue until June 30, 2014.

against dog racing in general because of its inhumane aspects. And the state’s largest dog track had many speakers whine about it not being permitted to have slots like neighboring Broward and Miami-Dade county pari-mutuel facilities. Somehow these geniuses forgot that, when the coalition of tracks and horsemen from Miami-Dade and Broward was formed, they turned down the opportunity to join us and basically laughed at us for spending all that money on attempting to legalize slots which they pretty much guaranteed us would never survive a statewide referendum. By now, you see the “Dog” of the “Dog and Pony Show,” but what about the “Pony”? The “Pony” was an idea conjured up by FHBPA lobbyist/public relations person Jennifer Pierce. Jennifer thought that bringing a racehorse to the hearing would attract lots of publicity and make the Senators remember what the Thoroughbred speakers said at the first of the four hearings and remember it long after the other hearings concluded. But from where do we get a racehorse and jockey that could be shipped an hour north to Coconut Creek to be put on display and used for picture opportunities? Well, Carlo Vaccarezza, owner of four-time Grade 1-winning Florida-bred Little Mike, said he would take care of it, and that he did. He shipped “Poco Chico,” a retired racehorse, to the Broward College Omni Auditorium and had him mounted by a jockey decked out in racing colors. The next day in the South Florida newspapers, there was a picture of Poco Chico and his jockey surrounded by a number of backsiders in bright fluorescent yellow shirts with “Horse Racing Keeps Florida Running” written across the back. Yet another one of Jennifer’s great ideas. The FHBPA Board of Directors showed up in force with just about all of the local members present and in the audience wearing their fluorescent yellow shirts. FHBPA President Phil Combest spoke, as did Teresa Palmer, who drove down from Tequesta to be present. But the greatest sacrifice was made by Carlo Vaccarezza and his trainer Dale Romans, who both flew in from Santa Anita Park, interrupting their Breeders’ Cup preparations just to be present and speak at the Senate hearing. Much credit should also go to Chaplain Tom LaPointe and his assistant, Alberto Grimaldi, who organized the backsiders and got them on busses to be present at the hearing. Also, our thanks to Poco Chico, who had his picture taken with Senator Charlie Dean and Representative Katie Edwards among many other political luminaries. Well, once you have their attention, then you have to get your message across, and I thought we did a good job of that. We had owners Teresa Palmer, Phil Combest and Carlo Vaccarezza talk about the importance of our industry to them and the state. Dale Romans spoke about how important Florida racing was to him, and veterinarians Bob O’Neil and Joe Zirelli did the same along with jockey Juan Leyva. Small business owners Donna Collie and Joe Iadisernia spoke, as well as Calder President Austin Miller and three Calder employees who spoke of the job opportunity Calder gave them and their families. Chaplain Tom and I rounded out the Thoroughbred speakers with my talk mainly on the economic impact of Thoroughbred racing on the state of Florida. We got lots of media attention, and the Dog and Pony Show was a success…at least for the Thoroughbred industry. Backside Doings Before school started again, the FHBPA joined Calder and Gulfstream in giving out backpacks to the kids of parents who work at both tracks. Chaplain Tom LaPointe arranged a picnic at each track for those receiving the school bags filled with school supplies…Chaplain Tom also arranged another fishing trip for about 50 backsiders who had a great time…Somehow Chaplain Tom




and his people found time to repair the roof and floor of our Medical Clinic trailer… The Chaplain and members of his church held a Harvest Fest at the His Place Ministries Church on Halloween for the children of racetrackers from both tracks. They gave out more than 700 pounds of candy and had hot dogs and hamburgers, snow cones, cotton candy and more for the more than 300 kids who attended. They also gave away two bikes, one each to a boy and girl.

Indiana HBPA

Thoroughbred Horsemen Look Forward to 2014 Meet After a 2013 meet that saw all flat racing conducted at one track for the entire meet for the first time in Indiana and a two-month experiment with day racing, still more change is coming to Indiana Downs for 2014. 46

HJ Winter


Ackerley Images

2013 Indiana Downs Meet Shows Attendance, Handle Gains Attendance and wagering at Indiana Downs produced gains during the track’s first fully Thoroughbred and American Quarter Horse meet. The 120-day race meet concluded on Saturday, October 19, and showed promising increases over the prior year. The 12th season of Indiana Downs racing saw an 8.1 percent increase in live on-track racing handle and a 5.6 percent increase in export handle. Current and new racing fans visited the racetrack in larger numbers, resulting in an on-track attendance increase of approximately 8 percent. Track management credited these gains to a combination of the one breed/one track format, new marketing efforts, the support of horsemen in filling the entry box and higher quality of horses. Recently acquired by Indianapolis-based Centaur Gaming, Indiana Downs focused on providing an enhanced racing product from the first day of racing. “From the newly constructed barns for our horsemen to providing an entertaining on-track experience for our guests, we’ve made significant improvements that we look forward to building upon next year,” said Indiana Grand Racing & Casino Vice President and General Manager of Racing Jon Schuster. Indiana HBPA President Joe Davis commented, “The HBPA is appreciative of Centaur Gaming and their continued efforts to provide the highest quality horse racing and amenities for horsemen, new guests and loyal fans. This year’s meet has been one of the more successful in years.” Enhanced family-friendly promotions and new events such as a Fourth of July celebration at the racetrack were offered to bolster the fan experience throughout the meet. The 2013 meet also marked the first running of the Indiana Derby at Indiana Downs. Previously run at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino in Anderson, the 19th installment of the Grade 2, $500,000 Thoroughbred race drew national attention.

The major changes coming to Centaur Gaming-owned Indiana Downs include track and facility upgrades and a closer working relationship between the track and horsemen’s groups. More than 300 stalls will have been added to the backside of the track by the time the 2014 meet begins. Two barns are complete, with two more to go by spring. In addition, the one-mile dirt surface will get a major overhaul before the start of the 2014 meet. That process, which will involve stripping the track down to its limestone base, rebuilding it back up and restructuring drainage tiles on the inside of the track, has already begun. The track backside will also see the construction of new dorm space before the beginning of the 2014 meet. At the deadline for this publication, Indiana Downs had filed a 2014 dates request with the Indiana Horse Racing Commission (IHRC) that would call for racing to begin approximately the Tuesday after the Kentucky Derby, running four days a week through the beginning of July, then five days a week through the beginning of November. Post times could be a combination of day racing through the weekdays with a 5:05 p.m. start time on Fridays and Saturdays. The Commission requires race date requests to be filed by the first of November. The next IHRC meeting is scheduled for December 10. The December 10 meeting was also scheduled to include an important vote on the Initial Distribution Agreement between Centaur Gaming and the four horsemen’s associations. A change in state law this year put horse racing’s share of slot machine revenue in the hands of the tracks and horsemen’s groups. The amount


IHRC Alters Quality Guidelines for 2014, Allows Added Incentives for Indiana-bred and -sired Horses The IHRC has approved a change to its quality guidelines beginning in 2014 that will have the effect of allowing higher purses for Indiana-bred and -sired races than that of an equivalent open race and, potentially, a greater percentage of all monies paid out through purses, supplements and awards to go to Indiana-bred or -sired races. The IHRC action, which was sought by Indiana Downs and supported by the Indiana HBPA and Indiana Thoroughbred Owner’s and Breeder’s Association,


distributed—heretofore hostage to legislative favor or disfavor—now must be determined by negotiation committees that represent horsemen and the tracks. As part of the new language, the percentage of slots revenue to purses was changed from 15 percent to at least 10 percent and not more than 12 percent. The new figure applies to gross slots receipts collected by the tracks after December 31, 2013. Centaur agreed to the full 12 percent for 2014, with the potential for contractual renewal for an additional seven years. All parties agreed on “subordination” of slots funds tied to an expected effort by Centaur to refinance after February 2014. The deal allows Centaur to use about $56 million as collateral. The agreement, which would hasten additional improvements to the physical plant at Indiana Downs, would give Indiana racing and breeding a level of stability that the industry has not known. And it would be a reflection of the level of partnership that exists between horsemen and our track partner. Unfortunately, the initial attempt at ratification of the agreement failed during a meeting of the IHRC in late October. Indiana law requires that approval of the slots revenue agreement by the IHRC must be gained by January 1, 2014. The Commission deadlocked 2-2 when the existing agreement was brought for testimony, discussion and a vote. Thoroughbred horsemen are hopeful that, by the time of this publication, the agreement will have been approved and a new era will have begun for Indiana racing and breeding. Regardless, Indiana Thoroughbred horsemen have plenty of reason to look forward to 2014.

will allow any Indiana Thoroughbred Breed Development race to offer a purse equal to or higher than that of an open race with the same conditions. That will provide additional incentives and revenue for those participating in the Indiana program. Historically, when all pari-mutuel-derived purse monies, additional stakes monies and awards and supplements paid to Indiana-bred or -sired horses are added up, Indiana-bred or -sired horses have won more than 50 percent of all available monies in Indiana. That number has generally been calculated at 51 percent, plus or minus a few percent, depending on the year. Now, the aggregate amount of all monies paid out through purses, supplements and awards to Indiana-bred or -sired Thoroughbred races will be 50 percent, plus or minus 5 percent. “This change will more accurately reflect what has been happening over the last several years and it will more clearly define and stabilize for current and prospective Indiana-bred or -sired owners and breeders an accurate, easily understood account of what is truly taking place in our state with our program,” said Jon Schuster of Indiana Downs.

Iowa HBPA HBPA Office Planning for 2014 Race Meet Although Prairie Meadows racing has come to an end, our office will remain busy planning for the opening of the 2014 race meet at Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino. We are planning for a Groom Elite 201 class, our annual awards dinner and the Adventureland outing. This will be the first year in many that a Groom Elite 201 class has been offered. There are many Groom Elite 101 graduates who work on the backside of Prairie Meadows, and this will only help to further their goals of understanding more about the horses in their care. Dr. C. Reid McLellan of the national Groom Elite program will conduct the class and evaluate every individual’s aptitude for Thoroughbred care once the course is completed.

Denis Blake




Backside Upkeep As is typically the case during the off-season here at Prairie Meadows, there are improvements being made to the backside for the betterment of the horses and horsemen. Currently, Prairie Meadows is doing concrete work (replacing broken concrete pads throughout the barn area) and will begin resurfacing some of the asphalt roads. Also being done is the annual replacing of stall boards, putting clay in stalls, fixing damaged barn doors, cleaning dumpsters and looking at some drainage issues. The main track racing surface has had material added to it to get the composition back to where it should be, and new material has been added to the training track with a final grade and it has been compacted and sealed for the upcoming winter months. As always, please visit the Iowa HBPA Facebook page to stay current on Iowa HBPA matters. H.A.R.T. Continues Mission of Retraining and Adopting Out Retired Thoroughbreds In the course of only a couple of days back in August, H.A.R.T. (Hope After Racing Thoroughbreds) successfully placed two horses from the program in new homes. The two horses placed are Sly Spy and Tempo Five. Both adopters were found through the use of one of H.A.R.T.’s excellent partners, Middle River Ranch based in Winterset, Iowa, run by the husband-and-wife team of Rick Hildreth and Robin Sprafka. Robin and Rick are both former members of the Des Moines Mounted Patrol and have years of experience working with horses to perform many non-racing disciplines. Sly Spy’s new owner is Cole Ryan, along with his parents Carrie and Patrick. Cole is 15 and from Winterset. He has found a passion for riding horses and learning about overall horsemanship. Cole has prior riding experience but wanted a bit more of a challenge by working with a former racehorse. Sly Spy was just the type of horse Cole needed to accomplish his goal, and with help from Robin, he is well on his way. Sly Spy will remain at Middle River Ranch so Cole and Sly can continue to learn from Robin’s vast amount of knowledge of various riding disciplines. The other horse adopted a few days after Sly Spy was Tempo Five. Tempo’s new owner is Carie Steinkamp. Carie wrote an excellent letter to H.A.R.T. explaining why she wanted Tempo and what it means to have Tempo now in her life. Following is her letter: I am a fairly new horse owner, having bought my first horse a year and a half ago. Although I take lessons regularly, I still consider myself a novice rider. I have to admit, I was guilty of carrying a stigma. I never even considered owning a Thoroughbred, albeit a retired racehorse! I was wrong. I met Tempo Five at Middle River Ranch, where I take lessons and he is boarded while waiting for adoption. From the first time I rode him, I could tell he was special. He relaxed me. After the third ride, I was completely in love and knew that he would take care of me as a rider. I also feel that he is the kind of horse that will be good at whatever he does. He is smart, beautiful and deserves a great home. I am so happy no one discovered him before I did! I want to thank the H.A.R.T. Program for everything you do to help these deserving animals. Sincerely, Carie Steinkamp Since the first adoption of All the Love in October 2012, H.A.R.T. has continued to build and is celebrating its second full year of operation. Without question it has been a successful first two years. The nonprofit 501(c)(3) continues to retrain and accept Thoroughbreds off the backside of Prairie Meadows. Some of the accepted horses had very raucous starts


HJ Winter


into the H.A.R.T. program, with difficult injuries that needed to be addressed immediately upon acceptance. Others have simply been a little too slow for the racing game and needed to find a new area to excel. H.A.R.T. has been there to help these horses transition into the best direction for them. All horses accepted into H.A.R.T. have received excellent care through the use of our partner retraining and boarding facilities. Our partners to date have been Billy Lander’s Farm, Sage Creek Stable, Wendt Training Center and Middle River Ranch. H.A.R.T.’s successful partnerships ensure that horses will continue to be adopted out into the wider horse industry for all of the disciplines in which a retired racehorse can perform. Finally, H.A.R.T. says “Thank You” to everyone who has participated in the silent auctions by either donating or purchasing items and to all the owners who contribute $5 per start at Prairie Meadows to the program. Also, H.A.R.T. says “Thank You” to the people and organizations that have donated monetarily to support H.A.R.T. in these first couple years of operation. It’s this continued level of generosity that enables H.A.R.T. to help horses find homes and careers after they are done racing in Iowa. Currently, Jon Moss, Iowa HBPA Executive Director, serves as Vice President for H.A.R.T. and Barb Carroll, IA HBPA Secretary/Treasurer, serves as H.A.R.T.’s Treasurer. For more information on H.A.R.T., please go to our website at or email us at

Kentucky HBPA President’s Message We are holding our breath that perhaps a renewed effort to pass gaming legislation is successful. We will work closely with legislative leaders to assure that the racing industry is protected. An equitable share of the revenue to address potential cannibalization of wagering on racing and assurance that we have an adequate number of racing dates are essential if racing is to survive. The window of opportunity to benefit from gaming legislation is slowly closing. First, with the competition from Indiana and now racinos in Ohio, Kentucky will continue to struggle to provide full fields of quality horses necessary to attract betting patrons to Kentucky’s races. You may have read about the effort to develop uniform model medication guidelines. The reforms have been spearheaded by the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC). Recently, various affiliates of the National HBPA met in Lexington to discuss myriad issues including the RMTC proposal. Generally, there appears to be support for uniform medication but not necessarily in the form proposed by the RMTC. Specifically, there are concerns with limiting the medications available to 24 and the multiple medication violation penalty system. There are procedural shortcomings associated with the model rule that need to be addressed. We plan to inform the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission of the concerns. Congratulations to Fred and Buff Bradley on Groupie Doll’s stirring repeat victory in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint at Santa Anita Park. It is extremely difficult to win a Breeders’ Cup race, and to repeat is next to impossible. She is a true champion. Good luck in your racing endeavors. Rick Hiles, KHBPA President


Our Lady of Guadalupe Day Celebrated with Procession from Holy Name Church to Churchill Downs For seven years, Frank Agrinsoni, Backstretch Programs Director at Churchill Downs, has organized a day of celebration surrounding Our Lady of Guadalupe, the patron saint of Mexico. Following a Catholic Mass at Holy Name Church, Father Sanchez leads a procession from the church to Churchill Downs. A fourfoot likeness of the Lady of Guadalupe is carried by members of the backstretch community to a grotto on the backside of Churchill specifically built to house the statue where many people come to worship and bring flowers. The festivities continue in the Churchill infield with a Mariachi band, Spanish cuisine and plenty of dancing and good cheer. “This is a special day for so many of our Hispanic workers,” Frank explained. “Their faith is very important to them and the celebration is reminiscent of home.” Turfway Park’s Track Renovation in Full Swing Chip Bach, Turfway Park General Manager, reports on the progress of the track surface: Based on feedback from our horsemen on our racing surface, we asked Dr. Mick Peterson, a renowned track engineer and consultant, to analyze the track. While the results did not infer our racing surface was unsafe, it did show the wax and fiber had deteriorated over time. Dr. Peterson and a representative from Keeneland worked with us to arrive at a standard for our track surface. A few weeks ago, we added three tankers of a wax/oil mixture to the track. We are awaiting a shipment from Germany of approximately 25 tons of fiber, which will be added to the surface prior to the live race meet in December. This is the first fiber added to the track since 2008. The process of adding fiber and the wax/oil mix will continue in 2014 and 2015.


Father Frank Neihaus: July 30, 1929–September 26, 2013 For several years, “Father Frank,” as he was affectionately known by his many friends, conducted Catholic services at Turfway Park in the winter and River Downs in the summer. Through his Backstretch Works of Mercy he administered to the needs of the backstretch community. “He loved racing, but more importantly he cared deeply for the people on the backside,” Dr. Tom Beckman commented. “He will be greatly missed by so many of us.”

Frank Jones, Chairman of KHBPA-PAC, Reports on Legislative Contributions Frank Jones conducted a meeting of the KHBPA Political Action Committee. Members of the committee include Frank Jones, Rick Hiles, Mike Bruder, Tom Conway, Buff Bradley and Bob Benson. The committee approved donations to 28 legislators. “The KHBPA-PAC provides the opportunity to recognize the exemplary work of our Kentucky lawmakers in support of the Thoroughbred racing industry,” Frank explained. KHBPA members are asked to support the KHBPA-PAC by signing a PAC card, which allows a $2 deduction from each start in Kentucky. Contact the KHBPA office at (502) 363-1077 or Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund (KTDF) Advisory Board Appears Poised to Recommend Change to Regulation You may recall we reported that Buff Bradley, KHBPA director, appeared before the KTDF Advisory Board to request consideration for Kentucky claiming horses running in optional claiming races to receive the KTDF supplement. He expressed the view that a Kentucky claiming horse deserves to share in the supplement if he is competing against allowance horses and happens to earn purse money. In a recent email, Dave Switzer, Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Executive Director, reported that the advisory board is seriously considering recommending the change. Health Reform for Horsemen 101 Richard Riedel, Executive Director of the Kentucky Racing Health and Welfare Fund, has compiled a booklet on what you need to know to survive the onslaught of the Affordable Care Act. The booklet contains a summary in an easy-to-follow question-and-answer format for both large and small stables. Interested? Contact Richard directly at or Rex on Probation Rex, the new employee/houseguest of the KHBPA, has been placed on administrative probation according to Sara Toomey, KHBPA Office Manager. Rex, originally Bobby Barnett’s barn cat, quickly tired of early mornings and the hustle and bustle of racetrack life at Churchill Downs. He decided to try helping out across the street from the stable gate at Luckett’s Tack Shop. However, that arrangement went south when Kenny Luckett, the proprietor, fell and nearly injured himself while trying to rescue Rex from the roof where he had climbed in search of birds. Next, he became the unofficial greeter at the Middle Eastern restaurant next to Luckett’s. He soon wore out his welcome, lounging on the outside tables while people were attempting to eat. He decided to try his hand at the KHBPA office.




The HBPA is You The HBPA, established in 1940, is an organization of owners and trainers numbering approximately 30,000 nationally in 23 states and Canada and more than 6,000 in Kentucky. The association is governed by a board of directors consisting of owners and trainers volunteering their time and elected by the membership every three years. The HBPA is committed to working for the betterment of racing on all levels. The HBPA represents owners and trainers on several fronts: • The HBPA is present in negotiating sessions with each racetrack regarding purse structure, equitable share of simulcast revenues, overall track safety, sanitation and security. • The HBPA provides benevolence to horsemen in need, education and recreation programs to the backstretch, various insurance packages that include—free of charge to members—fire and disaster insurance and claiming coverage. Visit one of the fully staffed HBPA offices at the currently running racetrack in Kentucky for details. • The HBPA works in conjunction with the chaplaincy program and the Kentucky Racing Health and Welfare Fund to provide support and benefits for horsemen. • The HBPA supports scientific research and marketing initiatives on a regional and national level to help promote interest in Thoroughbred racing. • The HBPA is at the forefront in litigation and legislation on issues involving horsemen’s rights in regard to interstate simulcasting, proprietary rights, casino gambling, therapeutic medication, sports betting and many other areas of concern to horsemen. How can I join? You are invited to drop by the HBPA office to meet the staff and learn more about current projects and how you can get involved in helping to improve the industry. There are no membership fees. Remember, this is your organization. Become an active participant and one of the horsemen helping horsemen. To join, all you need to do is fill out our membership card and fax, mail or email it back to us. For more information, please visit our website at and click on “How to Join.”


HJ Winter


Louisiana HBPA Updates and Reminders • The Louisiana HBPA will conduct an election for all 10 board members and the president on March 25, 2014. Election ballots will be mailed in early March and must be received at the designated post office box marked on the ballot envelope by March 25. Please help us have a good 2014 election by making sure that the LAHBPA has your correct mailing address so that you may receive your ballot. Please contact the horsemen’s bookkeeper to verify and update your address at any of the Louisiana racetracks or at the LAHBPA main office at (504) 945-1555, as soon as possible. • Horsemen are reminded to have their jock and pony fees on deposit with the bookkeeper before their horse starts. • Workers’ compensation accounts should be funded and kept current. • If you wish to have the payroll checks of workers approved, please make sure you have a current executed agreement on file with the LAHBPA. Denis Blake

“He has a routine,” Sara explained. “He meets whoever arrives at the office first and expects to be fed. He then goes back outside hoping to catch an unsuspecting bird. He actually caught a bird and released it in the basement. The bird was fine, but we had a heck of a time catching it. He pretty much sleeps the rest of the day at his desk and is very vocal if anyone talks too loud.” Normally, Rex winters in Louisiana at Fair Grounds Race Course when Bobby’s stable moves after the November race meeting at Churchill Downs, but due to his wandering ways, it was decided that he would stay in Kentucky this year. Rex says he will see all of his friends next spring.



Fair Grounds Race Course 2013-2014 Race Meets

Delta Downs Racetrack & Casino 2013-2014 Race Meets

1751 Gentilly Blvd. New Orleans, LA 70119 504-944-5515 *

2717 Delta Downs Dr., Vinton, LA 70668 * 337-589-7441 * Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu



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2235 Creswell Lane Extension, Opelousas, LA 70570 Toll Free: 866-4-Racing *

8000 Hwy 80 East, PO Box 5519, Bossier City, LA 71171 318-742-5555 *

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Harrah’s Louisiana Downs 2014 Race Meets

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Evangeline Downs Racetrack & Casino 2013-2014 Race Meets

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Coady Photography

Michigan HBPA The Michigan HBPA is diligently working toward finalizing plans for the 2014 Thoroughbred race meets. The Michigan Gaming Control Board has approved 43 days of live racing next year, and our current plans call for an opening day for racing at Mount Pleasant Meadows on Saturday, May 3. As always, we are committed to constructing a plan to return to the Detroit cityarea for live racing, and our talks and negotiations are proceeding very well. Michigan Senate Bill 634, to allow for advance deposit wagering, was introduced in October and has received excellent support from the legislators and the governor’s office. We anticipate that this addition to the track wagering environment in Michigan will be approved and finally made a reality in 2014. This year also marks the 80th anniversary of Thoroughbred horse racing in Michigan. A luncheon/reception to commemorate this milestone was held in Lansing and was well attended by senators, representatives and staffers. Our rich history has seen tumultuous changes, but we fully expect that the process of returning enhanced wagering and horse racing to our state is on our horizon. George M. Kutlenios, MiHBPA President

Minnesota HBPA

Coady Photography

Canterbury Park Recap

as each team’s rider dives off of his horse and one jump later springs aboard his next mount. Will a new type of exotic racing regularly grace the Canterbury crowd along with ostriches and camels? Congratulations to Our 2013 Leaders and Their Connections Leading Owner: Midwest Thoroughbreds (Karen and Richard Papiese) 111 / 28-16-17 Leading Trainer: Mac Robertson (9th consecutive title) 232 / 51-45-29 Leading Jockey: Dean Butler (4th Canterbury title) 355 / 67-58-59 Horse of the Year: Heliskier (2nd year in a row), Heliskier also earned divisional titles in the categories of Sprinter and Older Horse. Looking at National Statistics, Minnesota Racing Shines With wagering around the country being relatively flat, our off-track wagering increased by 46.7 percent while average daily on-track wagering was up 4.8 percent. Off-track wagering on Thursday and Friday nights increased by 80.3 percent as racing was picked up by TVG. Nationally, purses increased by 0.3 percent, but Canterbury showed a 27.6 percent increase! Race days nationally decreased 3 percent while Minnesota had an 11.3 percent increase. Our attendance, field size and foal crop numbers are up, and purse money is more than double what it was in 2011. The future looks bright! Look at Canterbury Park for your spring racing venue! Plan to join us for the 2014 season! Racing will get under way Friday, May 16.


HJ Winter


Denis Blake

Every year in September, as does summer, the Minnesota horse racing season comes to an end. This year was different than others in recent history with purse increases (thanks to an agreement with the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community), a longer race meet, fuller fields, expert track maintenance, increased handle and many thrilling events that drew monster crowds. One crowd-pleasing event, new this year to Canterbury Park, was the Indian Horse Relay. Rearing, painted bareback horses carrying loin cloth-clad, athletic American Indian riders wowed the onlookers. With entrants from several Montana Crow tribes, the Sho-Ban (Idaho), Northern Cheyenne Nation (Montana) and Blackfeet tribe (Montana), one nation competed against another in several heats leading up to the championship race. Nine teams of four (a rider, a set-up man who holds the next horse, a holder who holds the third horse and a mugger who stops the charging incoming horse) work together



Mountaineer Park HBPA


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Mountaineer Park HBPA By-Laws Approved On October 10 at the regularly scheduled meeting of the Mountaineer Park HBPA Board of Directors, they opened the ballots, counted the ballots and accepted the results, which approved the by-laws. Members were given a copy of the by-laws that included the changes as well as the final version. A copy of the new by-laws is available in the Mountaineer Park HBPA office. Thank you to board members John Donofrio, Janice Hanna and Jeannette McIntosh for dedicating numerous hours to ensure that the by-laws accurately reflected the organization. Barn and Groom of the Month

structure will be maintained through the 2014 racing season with the highlight being the Grade 2 West Virginia Derby on August 2. Mountaineer Park HBPA Celebrates the Holidays Several events are planned during the holiday season including a turkey giveaway through the Chaplain’s office provided by Mountaineer Casino Race Track and Resort. Members of the backside community are also invited to a Thanksgiving feast at the Riverfront Buffet located in the casino. Children will enjoy meeting Santa Claus with crafts, games and special treats at the annual children’s Christmas party on December 19 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Glassroom at the Clubhouse. Best wishes for a happy holiday season from the Mountaineer Park HBPA!

Nebraska HBPA

October Groom of the Month winner Julio Garcia and Barn of the Month winner Donna Zook

Tricks and Treats Enjoyed at Halloween Party More than 30 children came out to enjoy a Halloween party at Donna’s Kitchen. Children participated in a costume contest with winning contestants chosen for prettiest, scariest and most original. The children and their parents played games, did crafts and enjoyed treats! 2014 Racing Calendar Includes No Friday Racing Mountaineer Casino Race Track and Resort will be running five days a week beginning on March 1 through December 20 on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. It is expected that the current purse 54

HJ Winter


Ackerley Images

The Mountaineer Park Chaplaincy Board instituted a Barn of the Month and a Groom of the Month program to recognize those on the backside who take pride in their work and in their barn. The winning groom receives a jacket and the trainer receives a plaque. Both receive a $25 gift certificate to Donna’s Kitchen. Following is a recap of the recent winners: August: Chris Wallace - Groom of the Month, Randall Russell - Barn of the Month September: Guadalupe Ramirez - Groom of the Month, Antonio Pizzuro Barn of the Month October: Julio Garcia - Groom of the Month, Donna Zook - Barn of the Month November: Christina Kaminski - Groom of the Month, Richard Markham Barn of the Month

2014 Race Dates Scheduled for Nebraska Four Nebraska racetracks will be running live in 2014 for a total of 51 days. This is a rough repeat of the live meet schedule for 2013. At the Nebraska Racing Commission hearing held in October, Fonner Park in Grand Island applied for 31 days to be run February through May. Omaha Exposition and Racing (OER) applied for three live days to be run in Omaha at Horsemen’s Park the weekend after the Kentucky Derby. OER also applied for one day to be run in Lincoln, and Columbus Exposition and Racing applied for 16 live days at the Platte County Ag society facility in Columbus. The schedule begins in February 21 at Fonner Park and ends May 3. Horsemen’s Park begins its meet on May 9 running through May 11. Live racing will take a break over the summer and start again in Columbus on August 1 running through September 1. Lincoln Race Course will also run one live day, with its date to be announced after the Fonner live meet begins. Simulcasting at the new Lincoln Race Course facility has begun in the new location at Highway 77 and West Denton Road in southwest Lincoln. The live day will be run at this location and details will be announced after the actual date is determined.


Suffolk Downs Update By Lynne Snierson

Architectural rendering of the proposed casino at Suffolk Downs In the aftermath of the voters of East Boston resoundingly rejecting a proposal by Suffolk Downs to develop a world-class destination resort casino on the grounds of the sole remaining Thoroughbred racetrack in New England, the horsemen remained optimistic that racing will continue at the 78-year-old facility. Voters in East Boston, where about 100 acres of the track are located, turned back the measure by a vote of 56 percent to 44 percent on November 5. Voters in the adjacent city of Revere, where approximately 50 acres of the track are situated, supported the measure by a vote of 61 percent to 39 percent on the same day. “Although we are extremely disappointed in the results in East Boston, we are heartened by the vote in Revere and are optimistic that an alternative plan can be formulated that will allow us to continue to race our horses at Suffolk Downs next year and beyond,” said New England HBPA President Anthony Spadea. Under Massachusetts legislation passed in 2011, any applicant for one of the three destination resort casinos to be located in three separate geographical regions of the state, or for the lone stand-alone slots parlor to be located anywhere in the state, may not be awarded a license without the support of the community where it is to be situated. The proposal from Suffolk Downs, which had partnered with casino titan Caesar’s several years ago on a plan to develop a $1 billion casino on the racetrack grounds and had completed Phase 1 of the application process and paid the non-refundable $400,000 application fee, lost critical momentum about 2 ½ weeks before the votes. That is when the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC), which is empowered to award the licenses, notified Suffolk management that its background investigation of Caesar’s uncovered information that would deem it an unsuitable partner and derail the application. At that time, Suffolk’s management requested that the partnership be dissolved, and Caesar’s officials complied. Suffolk officials immediately began the search for a major casino concern to partner with for the development of the project and to operate the gaming


New England HBPA

end of the business, while it planned to continue to operate the racing division of the business. At press time, no deal had been struck. Suffolk’s Chief Operating Officer Chip Tuttle said the track will now explore moving the entire development onto the Revere side of the city line. Nonetheless, that will call for a complete architectural overhaul of the plans for the $1 billion project. New traffic mitigation and a host of other studies would be needed. Meanwhile, time is running short. The completed Phase 2 application, which must include the new partnership agreement and final alternative development plans, is due to be submitted to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission by December 31. The failure at the ballot box may have dealt a lethal blow to the future of racing and breeding in New England. Suffolk Downs, which offers the lowest purses on the East Coast, has been losing millions of dollars per year for many years. Tuttle has said that racing isn’t viable without the casino, and Suffolk is the only track in the state with a one-mile oval and a turf course. Until recently, Suffolk had been considered a lock to win the sole casino license designated for the Boston area, widely held to be the most lucrative, as there were no other bidders. But then last year Steve Wynn struck a deal with the nearby city of Everett to construct a $1.2 billion project on the site of an old chemical plant, and Foxwoods Resorts jumped into the market with plans for a similar sized project in the suburban town of Milford. The Wynn plan received an 85 percent margin of approval from voters in Everett, and the Milford election was slated for November 19. Therefore, even if both East Boston and Revere had voted to support the Suffolk casino, the track’s bid to receive the lone Boston casino license faced very stiff competition. The MGC said it plans to award the license by the end of April 2014. It should be noted that under the state’s gambling legislation, horsemen will receive subsidies from a pre-determined percentage of the gross gaming revenue from the three destination casinos and single slots parlor regardless of which companies are awarded the licenses. Nonetheless, the percentages of the split between the Thoroughbred and Standardbred industries have yet to be determined. The NEHBPA and Massachusetts Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association recently co-authored a study demonstrating that the Thoroughbred industry generates 90 percent of the racing revenue in the state and thus deserves 90 percent of the resources to be awarded through the Horse Racing Development Fund. The study is currently under consideration by the MGC. It has yet to be determined what will happen to those funds designated for the horsemen and breeders if there is no live Thoroughbred racing in Massachusetts. Suffolk Improvement Plan Prior to the referenda, in late October Suffolk Downs announced that if it proves successful in winning the sole casino license designated for the Boston area and develops a $1 billion world-class resort, the track intends to devote $40 million for a racing improvement plan. Clubhouse and grandstand renovations, state-of-the-art technology, enhancements to outdoor viewing areas, construction of new dormitories and additional upgrades to the barn area, and new racing surfaces are all part of the plan unveiled in late October at Indian Rock Stables, a Thoroughbred breeding farm located in Saugus, Massachusetts. The existing clubhouse and grandstand, including the current dining areas, will be modernized to create an enhanced consumer experience for




both live racing and simulcasting. The clubhouse, grandstand and upgraded box seating areas will all offer spectators prime views of the racetrack. The simulcast viewing areas of the clubhouse will be redesigned and feature the latest audio/visual and wagering technologies. The facility will also include a dedicated horsemen’s lounge for owners and trainers. Technological improvements will include the replacement of the existing infield toteboard, installation of a jumbo-sized outdoor television screen, an upgraded sound system and a computerized global positioning system to chart race results. In addition to some of the technological improvements, the outdoor racing experience will be enhanced with an expanded grass picnic area, amphitheater seating and upgrades to the paddock and winner’s circle. “If we are successful in earning a gaming license, we will be looking to schedule more special events and enhance our racing program with the return of the Massachusetts Handicap and an open stakes program, and these improvements to our facility would allow us to do so in a way that would best serve our customers and our horsemen and women,” said Chip Tuttle of Suffolk Downs. Improvements to the barn area include new dormitories, a new track kitchen and recreation hall and new bathrooms and showers. Renovations to existing barns will include the replacement of roofs and sprinkler systems and upgraded water service. The plan features the resurfacing of the one-mile main track and installation of a new turf course, along with the replacement of rails and improved grading and drainage for both courses. “We are very excited about this improvement plan and the many benefits it will provide for our members,” said NEHBPA President Spadea. “We are pleased that Suffolk Downs has included us in their discussions and incorporated our feedback in developing their plan.” OTTB Show a Success The NEHBPA sponsored the North East Thoroughbred Sporthorse Association OTTB Horse Show on October 6, and George Brown, president of the Massachusetts Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association, was there along with a group of horsemen to root on Irishtown. Brown recognized the horse he had owned and trained in the in-hand class, as Irishtown had won several races at Suffolk Downs while in his barn.

Irishtown repeated his top call in the Thoroughbred in-hand class and placed consistently across several divisions to win the Irish crystal trophy, which was donated by the NEHBPA and awarded for overall “High Point Suffolk Downs/NE Raced Thoroughbred.” The NEHBPA also held its annual charity golf tournament in August at the Glen Ellen Country Club in Millis, Massachusetts, and the proceeds from the well-attended events benefited the retirement and aftercare of horses who had raced at Suffolk Downs. The chapter wishes to thank all of the event’s sponsors and those who donated racing-related memorabilia and items for the raffles.

Ohio HBPA River Downs’ $200 million-plus rebuilding project is in full swing, and the track is expected to reopen on May 1, 2014, with many changes, including a new name—Belterra Park. The new Belterra Park will feature many improvements for horsemen, including 16 new open-air barns. Existing barns at the track have had roof repairs and been given a facelift. The main track will feature a longer chute allowing for races to be run at 6 ½ furlongs. More than 100 new dorm rooms have also been added on the backstretch. Belterra Park will feature 1,600 VLTs as well as a sit-down steakhouse with a terrace overlooking the track. Other dining options at the track will include a 300-seat buffet and a large sports bar and restaurant as well as traditional walk-up food stands in the grandstand area. The Ohio HBPA has reached an agreement with Pinnacle Ohio, owner of Belterra Park, on a 100-day live racing season for 2014. Racing will begin on May 8 and run through October 19 with racing to be conducted four days per week on a Thursday through Sunday schedule. Thistledown’s racing schedule for 2014 has also been set with the Cleveland-area track scheduled to conduct 122 days of live racing, the same as in 2013. Racing will begin at Thistledown on April 18, 2014, and run through November 16 with the majority of the season being conducted on a Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday schedule each week. The Ohio HBPA has reached an agreement with Penn National for 80 days of live racing at Beulah Park and Penn’s new track in Austintown, Mahoning Valley Race Course, in 2014. Under the agreement, racing would be conducted at Beulah Park from January 6 through Kentucky Derby Day on May 3. Beulah will race on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays through March with Wednesdays being dropped from the schedule in April. Live racing would begin at Mahoning Valley on November 24 and run through December 30 with racing to be conducted on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays through December 17 when Wednesdays will be dropped from the schedule.

Oklahoma HBPA (Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma)

From left, NETSA President Melody Taylor-Scott, NEHBPA member Lee Lobelenz, Jill Weinstein, NEHBPA Executive Director Bruce Patten and NEHBPA President Anthony Spadea present the trophy for the highest-scoring OTTB. 56

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TRAO Owner/Trainer Nominations and Election Process On October 25, the TRAO Election Committee held a conference call with Election Committee members Bill Anderson, Joe Alexander and Van French. The Election Committee confirmed their nominations and recommendations. On


TRAO Board Member of the Month: Ellen Caines Ellen Caines has been involved with all aspects of equine reproduction for the past 30 years. She currently represents 10 stallions for the 2014 breeding season. She was elected to the TRAO board as a breeder director in January 2013, a role that she feels strongly about. “We have a good thing going in Oklahoma, and we need to work together as owners, breeders and trainers to keep it moving in a positive direction,” she said.


October 26, owner/trainer floor nominations were held at Remington Park in the track kitchen. Owner/trainer candidates nominated were Randy Oberlander, Joe Offolter, Kenny Nolen, Kari Craddock, Donnie K. Von Hemel, Tim Williams, Bill Anderson, Clinton Stuart and John Lowder with a nomination from the floor for Jim Roberts. Ballots were mailed November 19, and return ballots must be postmarked by December 31. Counting of the ballots will be January 6, 2014. The TRAO strongly encourages each member/partnership to fill out their ballot and mail it back to the address provided. As a member of the Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma, take advantage of your right to VOTE!

Fitting and representing sale horses is her next favorite thing once breeding season is over. “I love the sales and meeting people from all over the world and being able to look at great horse flesh,” she added. “You never quit learning if you are willing to have an open mind and do a lot of observing.” Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission Rules of Racing Rule of the Month Rule 325:75-1-16.1. Forfeiture of Unclaimed Awards: Any person entitled to monies from the Oklahoma Breeding Development Fund Special Account as a purse supplement, stake, reward or award (“awards”) will forfeit such monies if that person fails to comply with all requirements necessary for earning the awards. Further, any person will forfeit such monies if within one (1) year from the date of the race in which the award was earned that person does not submit the State voucher for payment or for replacement in the event of an expired voucher, or if that person fails to submit all documentation required by the Commission. In such event, forfeited monies will be made available for expenditure by the Commission for purposes established in the Act.

More Mares Bred in Oklahoma for 2013 According to a release from The Jockey Club, Oklahoma is one of three states to see an increase in Thoroughbred mares bred from 2012 to 2013. State 2012 Stallions 2013 Stallions Pct. Change 2012 Mares Bred 2013 Mares Bred Pct. Change Kentucky 224 235 4.9 15,361 15,695 2.2 Florida 126 126 0 3,070 2,853 -7.1 California 166 136 -18.1 2,406 2,332 -3.1 Louisiana 144 137 -4.9 2,072 1,833 -11.5 New York 60 62 3.3 1,641 1,560 -4.9 New Mexico 109 97 -11.0 983 971 -1.2 Oklahoma 93 89 -4.3 911 928 1.9 Pennsylvania 74 53 -28.4 1,061 902 -15.0 Texas 110 105 -4.5 835 865 3.6 Also according to Carter Sales Company, in 2013 there was a 41.6 percent increase in average compared to 2012. The 2013 sale included Thoroughbred 2-year-olds and horses of racing age, and the average sale price for the yearling session was $7,796 in comparison to $5,654 in 2012. The buyback rate fell from 28 percent to 22 percent. Ackerley Images




HBPA of Ontario Ontario Government Launches Five-Year Plan for Horse Racing Industry On October 11, the Ontario government released their much-anticipated plan, Building a Sustainable Future Together: Ontario’s Five-Year Horse Racing Partnership. A copy of the report can be found at about/transition/finalreport10102013.htm. Developed by the Horse Racing Industry Transition Panel, the five-year plan has been designed to strengthen the industry and support an environment for future growth through three pillars: reformed industry governance, public investment in horse racing and the integration of horse racing with the modernization of the Ontario Lottery and Gaming (OLG) Corporation. Composed of three retired Members of Provincial Parliament (MPPs), the panel was originally retained in June 2012 by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) to make recommendations on how the government could help the horse racing industry adjust to the abrupt cancellation of the Slots at Race Tracks Program (SARP) announced in March 2012. The plan is consistent with recommendations made to OMAFRA by the panel. Unfortunately, the plan will see significantly less revenue flow into the industry in Ontario as the total public funds the government will invest in the horse racing industry will not exceed $80 million per year or $400 million over the five years (April 1, 2014, to March 31, 2019) and will only support 900 race dates per year distributed over eight tracks. Prior to the cancellation of SARP, there were approximately 1,638 races dates across 17 racetracks in Ontario. Principal to the five-year plan is the restructuring of the Ontario Racing Commission (ORC) to fill two distinct roles—regulation/adjudication and development. The development arm will be referred to as Ontario Live Racing (OLR). OLR will be organized into three breed-based divisions—Standardbred Live, Thoroughbred Live and Quarter Horse Live—and will be responsible for the distribution of the public monies over the five years with a view to industry self-governance in the future. Leading OLR will be former Progressive Conservative MPP John Snobelen. Elmer Buchanan, a former New Democrat MPP, will assume the role of chair of the ORC, replacing Rod Seiling, who recently resigned from the post one year ahead of the end of his term. OLR will coordinate the racing calendar for eight centrally located tracks: Hanover, Clinton, Grand River, Western Fair, Flamboro, Georgian, Mohawk and Woodbine. OLR will manage the Horse Improvement Program (HIP), coordinate the centralized marketing of the Ontario racing product, will lead in promoting equine welfare and will be responsible for gaming initiatives. In addition to the $80 million per year, the Horse Improvement Program, which supports the breeding sector in Ontario (by all accounts the sector hardest hit financially by the cancellation of SARP), will continue to receive $30 million per year to March 31, 2019, from Pari-Mutuel Tax Reduction (PMTR) legislation, which became effective January 1, 1997, in Ontario and reduced the pari-mutuel tax rate from an average of 7.4 percent to 0.5 percent on all wagers. Prior to cancellation of the SARP, HIP received $40 million annually. Integral to the five-year plan is the integration of horse racing into Ontario’s gaming strategy through the modernization of the OLG. At the moment there is great speculation as to how the integration will eventually work, but it is thought the integration will include new forms of gaming to be introduced at the remaining racetracks who are receiving funding and the eventual collaboration with the OLG using the advance deposit wagering (ADW)


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services run by a single operator, as well as online gaming and new racingthemed products such as historical horse races and a race-based lottery. A member of the Horse Racing Industry Transition Panel, John Wilkinson (former Liberal MPP), is said will play a pivotal role in the integration of horse racing into the OLG gaming strategy. Expansion of Casinos in Ontario In March 2012, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation presented publicly its report Modernizing Lottery and Gaming in Ontario. In it, the OLG made three key recommendations to reform the province’s gaming and lottery industry. The recommendations were as follows: to become more customerfocused, expand regulated private sector delivery of lottery and gaming and renew the OLG’s role in oversight of lottery and gaming. The report called for the cancellations of Slots at Racetracks Program at the end of March 2013, a recommendation which the Ontario Liberal government acted upon. The OLG also suggested allowing for slot facilities beyond horse racing tracks so that sites can be located where, according to the OLG, “there is customer interest.” Since the announcement last March, city councils in several municipalities, including Toronto and several major municipalities outside of the greater Toronto area, have turned down the opportunity to build or expand a casino in their jurisdiction. Even though the Toronto City Council soundly rejected a major downtown casino at a special meeting this past May with a 24-20 vote, Woodbine Entertainment, which has now changed its status from a nonprofit organization to a for-profit corporation for tax purposes, continues to meet with City Councilors in an effort to sway them to re-open the contentious casino debate. It is hoped by Woodbine that if there is a debate it will take place prior to the 2014 Toronto municipal elections. Fort Erie Race Track The Fort Erie Live Racing Consortium (FELRC), which has been operating the track for the last three years, recently submitted to Nordic Gaming a conditional proposal to purchase the track; the track being defined as the track itself, the clubhouse and the backstretch. The HBPA of Ontario does recognize that the five-year plan for horse racing released on October 11 by the Ontario government was another tough pill for Fort Erie horse people as it clearly does not support a full race calendar for the historic track. The HBPA of Ontario would like to reassure members that the HBPA and the FELRC continue to discuss and negotiate with the Horse Racing Industry Transition Panel in an effort to keep the track open for live racing in 2014. Health and Dental Plan Rate Increase Effective November 1 The Manulife Health and Dental Insurance Plan is the HBPA of Ontario’s number one budget expense. This year there will again be increased costs in premiums. The HBPA will absorb 50 percent of the rate increase and members the other 50 percent effective November 1, 2013. The HBPA continues to substantially subsidize more than 50 percent of the plan costs on behalf of our members. It should be noted that the increased premium for the plan was effective July 1, and the HBPA of Ontario has paid the increase in premiums from July 1 to October 31, 2013. Plan members will receive notification of the new premium rates from AON Hewitt.


Oregon HBPA We are already into November and before you know it the holidays will be here and gone and then it will be a brand new year. Racing here at Portland Meadows has been doing quite well. With the higher purses, we have lured a lot of new trainers and owners. Thank you so much for joining us here. Oregon Championship Day was November 17 and, boy, it was expected to be a GREAT day. The Oregon Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association had a lot of outstanding events planned for that day, and we hope everyone brought a guest and enjoyed a wonderful day at the races. I hope everyone has an enjoyable holiday season and that your horses make you smile as you yell out loud for them.

Pennsylvania HBPA Pennsylvania horse racing is rapidly becoming a viable and exciting industry. The Pennsylvania Horse Development Fund, which was designed to rejuvenate the sport, has done just that. Handle trends through September have been positive for Pennsylvania racing. Penn National Race Course and Presque Isle Downs have exhibited some mixed results. Although on-track numbers have declined in attendance and on-site wagering at both tracks, an increase in off-track wagering bodes well for racing in the Commonwealth. Through 148 live racing days, Penn National shows an all-sources increase of 6.5 percent over last year and the daily average export handle is up 7.4 percent. Average on-track daily handle at Penn was $57,000 and showed a drop of 7.5 percent. Import wagering on simulcast races was down 12 percent this year. The quality of races at both tracks has been at an all-time high. On June 1, Penn National presented a series of stakes highlighted by the inaugural running of the $500,000 Penn Mile Stakes for 3-year-olds on the turf. The stakes-laden card included the $250,000 Mountainview Handicap and the $150,000 Pennsylvania Governor’s Cup and was complemented with additional quality races. A new record handle of $3.2 million was wagered on the card, eclipsing the previous record of $2.6 million. An ambitious pre-Thanksgiving Day program was to be presented on November 27, headed by the $250,000 Fabulous Strike Handicap. Rounding out the card was the $150,000 The Lady in Waiting, $150,000 Swatara and $75,000 Pa-Bred Blue Mountain Stakes. These events attract the attention of a national audience and bring great racing and superior horses and jockeys to race in Pennsylvania.


Service Canada Implements a Processing Fee for Temporary Foreign Worker Applications Effective July 31, 2013, Service Canada has implemented changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) geared toward reform to ensure Canadians are given first chance at available jobs. Employers applying to hire TFWs at the racetrack (grooms, exercise riders and jockeys) must now pay a processing fee of $275 for each position requested to cover the cost of the Labour Market Opinion (LMO). Employers must now advertise the position for a minimum of four weeks, however, the job must remain posted until a positive LMO is received, which could take as long as three months to obtain. Please note that these changes are only applicable to TFWs at racetracks. For additional information, please contact Corinne Phillips at the HBPA backstretch office at Woodbine by phone at (416) 675-3802 or by email at

At Presque Isle Downs, records fell repeatedly in 2013. It began with a new single day handle of $1,197,979 on Monday, May 13. This was followed by a record-smashing Masters Day handle of $1,295,066 and culminated in a final race day handle of $1,322,458. Adding luster to the list was Groupie Doll’s track record-breaking time of 1:14.88 in winning the Grade 2 Presque Isle Masters Stakes at 6 ½ furlongs. It was her second consecutive victory in the stakes and followed an Eclipse Award-winning performance in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint in 2012. Kudos and congratulations are once again in order for all of Groupie Doll’s connections, as she has now repeated her victory in the 2013 Breeders’ Cup. Maybe she will be awarded the triple-double by winning sprinter of the year again in 2013. All in all, it was a banner year for the little racetrack on the shores of Lake Erie. Final figures for the meet included a huge jump in total all-sources handle of 40.17 percent to $70,329,379 from $50,174,350. Live attendance and on-track handle were down by 15.8 percent but were offset by an increase of 15.47 percent in import simulcast wagering. New Start Horse Adoption Thoroughbreds arrive at the track to begin their racing careers accompanied by the dreams of races to be won and riches to be made. When their racing days are over, no matter what level of success they achieved fulfilling those dreams, there is much less thought about what’s next for this versatile horse, which is bred for speed and endurance and gifted with agility and intelligence. The Pennsylvania HBPA created New Start, a retired racehorse adoption program, to address this issue. New Start’s mission is to place horses with horsemen who will provide a safe, nurturing environment where the horses will get a new start on their second career. The PA HBPA had previously worked with outside rescue groups but decided the interests of the horses and the PA HBPA were better served with their horsemen in charge of placing the horses. “Our retired horses are finding great success doing dressage, showing and eventing. Some have even become Western pleasure horses and others are just companion horses,” said Lauren Zagnit, program coordinator of New Start. “Thoroughbreds are making believers of show horse trainers who are finding them to be adaptable to whatever discipline they practice. The advent of Thoroughbred-only horse shows are showcasing their abilities and building their popularity.” New Start is funded by a $10 fee paid by the owners of all horses that start in a race at Penn National Race Course and by donations (donations are not tax-deductible). New Start is managed by the adoption committee, which consists of trainers Murray Rojas, Gary Craig, Sandee Beattie, Stephanie Tate and practicing veterinarian Dr. Renee Nodine. The committee is responsible for accepting and rehoming qualified horses. Horse owners can donate horses to New Start if they meet the program’s qualifications. Horses not meeting the requirements may be submitted and will be considered on an individual basis. “The welfare of the horse is our primary concern, so we try to accommodate all horses nominated to the program, no matter what their soundness or eligibility might be,” said Zagnit, who has trained horses for over 30 years. “We recently completed arrangements with nearby equine surgical centers willing to provide low cost surgeries if needed, and we have farms for turnouts. Our goal is to have horses ready to be ridden and adoptable within 60 days of coming into the program.” New Start offers horses for direct adoption or for fostering. Foster farms receive a fee for fostering horses and then are free to offer the horses for adoption.




“Our committee tries to match the horse’s ability with what the adopter or foster farm is looking for in a horse,” Zagnit explained. “We’ve had great success placing horses through our foster farms.” New Start requires adopters to supply updates of the horse at two, five, nine and 12 months following the adoption. The committee aims for the best outcomes between the new owners and horses so they are available to offer advice, encouragement and answers. Information, applications and success stories are available on New Start’s website at

Washington HBPA Prodigious Fund’s Inaugural Thoroughbred Showcase

Tampa Bay Downs HBPA December 4 marks the continuation of the 88th season of racing that officially began on July 1. Thanks to increased simulcast revenue, due in part to the Summer Festival of Racing, which was held June 30 and July 1, Tampa Bay Downs has announced a purse increase of 15 percent. With the need for new sources of gaming revenue in order for purses to remain competitive with South Florida, Tampa Bay Downs HBPA President Bob Jeffries traveled to Lakeland on October 30 to speak before the Florida Senate Gaming Committee Workshop. Bob, representing Tampa Bay Downs’ horsemen, urged the committee to consider the increased revenue expanded gaming would bring to the state as a whole. Mark your calendars for our annual Christmas party on Tuesday, December 17, where the HBPA will be serving up holiday cheer on the backside from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Rumor has it that Santa will be stopping by. Tampa Bay Downs has a new and welcome addition to the backside, Papa Jim’s Kitchen. With many years of experience and much hard work, the Tsirigotis family has renovated the old track kitchen into one that we are proud of and appreciate having on the backside. They will be offering many daily specials at extremely reasonable prices. Hours of operation are dark days, 5 a.m. to 2 p.m., and race days, 5 a.m. to 6 p.m. Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season! The inaugural Thoroughbred Showcase featuring more than 30 former racehorses on view for prospective new owners was held on Saturday, August 31, at the WTBOA Sales Pavilion at Emerald Downs. Hosted by the Prodigious Fund, the Thoroughbred Showcase was not an auction or sale but a place for racehorse owners to network with prospective buyers of OTTBs and possibly negotiate a private sale. The event drew a large crowd eager to meet the horses aged 3 and up and which were currently or at one time in training at Emerald Downs. Veterinarians were on hand to take X-rays and perform pre-purchase soundness exams, if requested. The morning started off with a public viewing followed by an in-hand exposition of each horse in the sales arena. Liana Antanovich, FEI Dressage Competitor, Instructor and Trainer, and a former show jumper and eventer and author of several books about developing young horses, commented on each horse as they entered the ring, highlighting conformation and temperament characteristics that pointed toward suitability for eventing, hunter/jumper, dressage, trail, polo, light riding, companion horse, barrel racing and 4-H. Trainers or owners were given an opportunity to talk about their horse and answer any questions from the audience. The renovated Papa Jim’s Kitchen 60

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“Our goal was to make the Thoroughbred Showcase the ‘go-to’ place for your next sport-horse prospect,” said Emerald Downs Director of Marketing Sophia McKee. “By creating a competitive market for these horses after they are done racing, we can ensure their future success and security. The owners and trainers just want to find good homes for these horses.” Over half of the horses found new homes by the end of the event with an average selling price of $2,000. Amazingly, 18-year-old Enumclaw Bandit was one who was put on a trailer bound for Rock Meadow Stables in Issaquah. His new owner admired his calm temperament and perfect suitability for a schooling horse at her barn. Since the event and as of this writing, all of the remaining horses have either been sold or at least have a sale pending. “The showcase seemed to rekindle the OTTB market,” said MaryAnn O’Connell, WHBPA Executive Director. “Since the event, I have received numerous calls from people inquiring about a specific horse or looking for horses in general. The condition and temperament of the horses at the Showcase made me very proud of our industry.” After the event, Jill Hallin, an active Prodigious Fund volunteer and Washington Horse Racing Commission employee, said, “I heard nothing but great comments. Well done everyone, from the greeters to the trainers and everyone in between!” For more information, go to the Facebook page at prodigiousfund or contact Sophia McKee at The Prodigious Fund is an organization dedicated to recognizing and supporting positive efforts made within the Thoroughbred aftercare community for the rehoming, promotion and care of retired racehorses. Solar and Chesna Klimek Thrive in 100-Day Trainer Challenge

The five Challenge horses—two geldings, two fillies and one mare—all raced at Emerald Downs and were provided by Emerald Downs owners and trainers, who will receive a share of the proceeds when the horses are sold privately after the 100-Day Trainer Challenge. Solar, a 7-year-old gelding by Include, was winless in seven starts and retired from racing after one start at four and earnings of just over $8,000. The bay gelding, who is owned by Emerald Downs Vice President and Prodigious Fund Board Treasurer Jack Hodge, presented Klimek with the first-place check. Solar and Klimek received 10 points for finishing first in freestyle, five for finishing first in in-hand and three points for third in flat class. Dakota Demon and 57-year-old rider/trainer Mark Bolender took secondplace and a $500 prize with 13 points, finishing second in both freestyle and in-hand and fifth in flat class. Voted the Fan Favorite and awarded a special halter at the prize ceremony, Bolender and Dakota Demon amazed all those who followed their progress on YouTube during the 100-day competition. The 3-yearold filly by Demon Warlock last raced at Emerald Downs on June 6, barely three weeks before entering the challenge. Summer Snow, the oldest horse in the competition, finished third under the guidance of rider/trainer Devin Robel of Eugene, Oregon, and earned $250. The 9-year-old gelding, who last raced in May of this year at Turf Paradise, finished third in both the in-hand and freestyle and fourth in the flat class. Unlike many horses that show longevity, the beautiful moving, scopey 17-hand gelding by Snowbound ran in many Quarter Horse races. He had 41 career starts with a record of 6-5-5 and broke his maiden at Los Alamitos in his second start as a 3-year-old. Underfunded Fun, a 4-year-old filly trained by Ruel Johnson of Poulsbo, and The Last Say, a 6-year-old mare trained by Meika Decher of Lake Stevens, rounded out the order of finish. Undefunded Fun and The Last Say each totaled nine points. All competitors received blankets for their efforts. Horses not being kept by their new trainers are being offered for sale with proceeds being split between the owner and trainers. For more information, contact Sophia McKee at Emerald Downs or visit the Prodigious Fund Facebook page. The Sun Shines on OTTBs at Donida Farm

Chesna Klimek demonstrates hands-free riding aboard Solar. Solar and rider/trainer Chesna Klimek were the big winners in the Prodigious Fund’s 100-Day Trainer Challenge Competition at Donida Farm in east Auburn. The 100-Day Trainer Challenge Competition was one of the featured events at the Thoroughbred Horse Show, held before a large crowd on a picture-perfect afternoon. Solar and Klimek took first-place in two of three divisions—in-hand and a 3 ½-minute freestyle competition—and racked up 18 points to defeat their four competitors and earn the $1,000 first prize. The freestyle competition is what wowed onlookers the most as Klimek demonstrated jumping Solar without tack and at times hands-free.

After 10 days of record rainfall in the Seattle area, the sun came out just in time for the inaugural Prodigious Fund Thoroughbred Show. Held at Donida Farm in Auburn, the show was the last of three major new events in 2013 for the organization dedicated to supporting the after care and rehoming of offthe-track Thoroughbreds.




Ring and class sponsorships enabled the show to be a fundraising event for the Prodigious Fund, but more important, the large number of spectators was able to observe multiple rehoming success stories. Wapato Gold is one such story. The 13-year-old Stolen Gold gelding, who had a record of 39-8-6-5 as an earner of nearly $60,000 at the racetrack, won several classes in the hunter division at the show. Also showing at Donida was the multiple stakes winner Saltgrinder, who retired from racing at age nine after earning $217,742 on the racetrack. The now 14-year-old appeared to be totally enjoying his new life, soaking in the sun as he was walked on a loose rein around the show grounds. Unique to most horse events, the Prodigious Fund show brought together show horse people and racetrack personnel eager to be reunited with some of their old friends. Besides the various competitions, a lot of stories were shared about past lives and new careers. Compared to most horse shows, spectators were more engaged and participants (equine and human) were more appreciated, not only for the day’s events, but also for their contribution to the Thoroughbred racing industry. “Volunteers from both the racing and showing world are what really brought the show together,” said Hillary Hutchison of Emerald Downs who chaired the event. “Professional judges Tami Masters, Patti Burns and Jamie Gray volunteered their expertise, as well as WHRC Steward Amanda Benton, who kept order in the event as she does in the race office.” Thanks also go to Dr. John Stenslie of Sport Horse Medicine Inc. for volunteering his services for the event. Trainer Jeff Metz Earns 2013 Season Honors Jeff Metz, new to Emerald Downs in 2013, did not remain unknown for very long as the meet opened in April and he quickly catapulted to the top of the leading trainer standings. He remained at or near the top throughout the meeting and in the end edged out two-time defending champion Frank Lucarelli in a neck-and-neck stretch run on September 29, marking the close of the track’s 18th season. The 46-year-old Californian saddled 42 winners. Metz (Saratoga West) also was the meet’s leading owner with 20 wins, and his charge E Z Kitty captured Top Older Filly or Mare honors. The Washington-bred 5-year-old mare dominated this year’s older distaff division with three stakes wins. Lucarelli finished second with 39 wins, including five wins by 4-yearold filly Kind of Naughty, who became Lucarelli’s third horse in the last four years to be voted Top Claimer of the Meeting. It was the 12th time in the last 15 seasons Lucarelli has finished first or second in the trainer standings, a testament to the Washington native’s achievements. George Robbins and Darcia Doman’s Herbie D, who is 10-for-13 overall with earnings of $337,928 in his career, was voted Horse of the Meeting. The 5-year-old British Columbia-bred gelding was dominant in two starts while rolling to gate-to-wire victories in the $200,000 Longacres Mile and $50,000 Mt. Rainier Handicap. The Robert Gilker-trained bay earned the meet’s two biggest Beyers—a 101 in the 1 1/16-mile Mt. Rainier and a 100 in the Grade 3 Mile—and defeated a star-studded Mile field that included shippers from New York, Kentucky, California and Canada. Northwest Farms’ Stopshoppingdebbie was a unanimous choice for Top 3-Year-Old Filly, as the daughter of Curlin became the first horse in track history to sweep all four open stakes races for sophomore fillies, winning at distances of 6 ½ furlongs, one mile, 1 1/16 miles and 1 1/8 miles. Tom Wenzel received Top Training Achievement for his work with Stopshoppingdebbie. Another newcomer captured leading rider honors as 40-year-old Isaias Enriquez unseated Juan Gutierrez atop the jockeys’ standings by a 101-96 62

HJ Winter


total. For his superior first season at Emerald Downs, Enriquez also was voted Top Riding Achievement for 2013. Enriquez and Gutierrez (who missed the final two weeks with injury) dominated the jockey colony; both nearly doubled the win total of third-place finisher Eliska Kubinova (54 wins). Polish Dollar earned the nod as Top Sprinter, and the 7-year-old gelding is the oldest horse to win an Emerald Downs title in 2013. A winner of three races in 2013, Polish Dollar ended the meet with a stakes-placed finish in the Muckleshoot Tribal Classic, showing strong improvement from his bottom-level claimer maiden victory in 2010. The Bob Meeking trainee, owned by Sharon Radke, is 13-for-35 lifetime at Emerald Downs. The winner of the Muckleshoot Tribal Classic was voted Top Washingtonbred. Stryker Phd, a 4-year-old gelding, finished second in all four open stakes for 3-year-olds and up, including a runner-up effort to Herbie D in the Longacres Mile prior to his victory in the Classic. Trained by Margo Lloyd for Jim and Mona Hou, he finished the meeting with earnings just shy of $100,000 and career earnings of $125,646 (11-2-4-4). Del Rio Harbor, who runs for breeders Bar C Racing Stables Inc. and Desert Rose Racing LLC, earned top honors in the 2-Year-Old Male division. Trained by Doris Harwood, the chestnut gelding capped a spectacular four-win campaign with a 1 ¼-length victory in the Gottstein Futurity. Chu and You took 2-Year-Old Filly honors with four wins, including three stakes, for trainer Robbie Baze and breeders/owners Mike and Amy Feuerborn. Texas-bred Worldventurer, seven-length winner of the Emerald Derby, took honors as Top 3-Year-Old Male. Blaine Wright trains the consistent gelding for owner Peter Redekop Ltd. Emerald Downs 2013 Season Honors Horse of the Meeting: Herbie D (BC) Top WA-bred: Stryker Phd (WA) Top Older Horse: Herbie D (BC) Top Sprinter: Polish Dollar (WA) Top Older Filly or Mare: E Z Kitty (WA) Top 3-year-Old Male: Worldventurer (TX) Top 3-year-Old Filly: Stopshoppingdebbie (KY) Top Juvenile Male: Del Rio Harbor (WA) Top Juvenile Filly: Chu and You (WA) Top Claimer: Kind of Naughty (KY) Race of the Meet: 78th Longacres Mile, August 18 Leading Rider: Isaias Enriquez (101 wins) Leading Trainer: Jeff Metz (42 wins) Leading Owner: Saratoga West (20 wins) Top Riding Achievement: Isaias Enriquez (Wins title in first season) Top Training Achievement: Tom Wenzel (Stopshoppingdebbie) Durkan Award: David Martinez, Martin Pimentel Lindy Award: Connie Doll WHBPA General Meeting Features Dr. Michael “Mick” Peterson The annual meeting for Washington HBPA members was held on Saturday, August 31, at Emerald Downs. In competition with the opening Washington Huskies football game, the meeting was lightly attended. Those who participated, however, ranked the meeting as “one of the best” primarily due to racetrack surface expert Dr. Michael “Mick” Peterson, who traveled from Maine to attend the meeting. The 48 in attendance were treated to an informal lesson on racetrack composition and analysis that came across more as a conversation than a



lecture. Although the subject is technical and scientific, Peterson has a way of bringing it down to an understandable level. He clarified the problems concerning obtaining reliable data, noting that catastrophic incidents are a statistical rarity and occur with a variety of variables, therefore making it difficult to draw accurate conclusions. The positive side is that science is making headway on determining factors that can help prevent injuries. Mick’s humor and natural gift for teaching made for an enjoyable evening. Also discussed during the evening were new model rules being proposed by the Association of Racing Commissioners International (RCI), including a multiple medication violation penalty rule and one requiring continuing education for trainers. President Ron Maus, who was unavailable for the meeting, addressed the audience via video. Dr. Mick Peterson addresses Washington HBPA members

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The Horsemen's Journal - Winter 2013  

The official publication of the National Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association.

The Horsemen's Journal - Winter 2013  

The official publication of the National Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association.