Leading owner/breeder Harry T. Mangurian Jr. and California senior steward Pete Pedersen have been named co-recipients of the Eclipse Award of Merit.
A committee of representatives from the Eclipse Award-presenting organizations -- the NTRA, Daily Racing Form, and National Turf Writers Association -- selected Pedersen and Mangurian.
Mangurian entered racing in 1966. He developed the 1,100-acre Mockingbird Farm in Ocala, Fla., into a breeding and racing operation with more than 800 horses. He led all breeders in North America from 1999 through 2001 in earnings and races won. He has bred or raced more than 150 stakes winners.
Mangurian donated $1 million to the NTRA-Heroes Fund to help the families of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
A former owner of the Boston Celtics, Mangurian is a member of The Jockey Club. He has served on the board of the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders' and Owners' Assoc. for 25 years, and is a founder and the original chairman of the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co.
In 1998 and 2000, the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association named Mangurian Breeder of the Year. Over the past three years, Mangurian has dispersed his breeding stock and sold his farm.
Pedersen, 81, was a navy pilot during World War II. He attended a War Relief Racing Day at Bay Meadows, where he decided that if he returned from the war he would become a racing steward.
In 1955 Pedersen was named a steward in California. During his career in racing, he has worked at nearly every track on the West Coast, starting with Longacres in Washington, and making his way south. He now serves as senior steward at Santa Anita.
In addition to his racing duties, Pedersen has written for the Los Angeles Times and the San Francisco Chronicle, as well as racing publications such as Thoroughbred Times and Daily Racing Form.