Linda Dougherty

Surface Woes Lead to Penn National Cancellations

Following the refusal of jockeys to ride the remainder of the live card after two races had been completed Jan. 7, Penn National Race Course in Grantville, Pa., announced Jan. 9 it would cancel live racing and training for this week while attempts are made to fix "inconsistent" portions of the racing surface.

Jockeys Accept 'Challenge' to Assist Katrina Victims

Top jockeys from across the country, including several born in Louisiana, will participate in the Katrina Invitational Jockey Challenge at Meadowlands the evening of Nov. 10. They're donating all fees earned to the Race Track Chaplaincy of America to benefit Louisiana horsemen affected by Hurricane Katrina.

Festival Highlights New Jersey-Bred Program

As New Jersey owners and breeders prepare to celebrate the fruits of their labors at the third New Jersey Thoroughbred Festival at Monmouth Park Sept. 17, in which five stakes races and $700,000 in purses will be offered for horses foaled in the state, there is a growing sense of optimism about the state's racing and breeding program.

Atlantic City Opens Amid Reports of Sale

Amid reports of a sale to a major outdoors retailer and use of its mostly vacant grandstand by homeless people, Atlantic City Race Course is prepared for four days of live turf racing beginning April 29 with a steeplechase program.

Delaware Park to Offer Its First $1M Stakes

Delaware Park, which was the early proving ground last season for four probable contenders in the May 7 Kentucky Derby (gr. I)--Afleet Alex, Bellamy Road, Closing Argument, and High Limit--will offer its first $1-million race during a 135-day meet that kicked off April 30.

Servis: Foot Bruise Didn't Hinder 'Smarty'

Trainer John Servis revealed at a press conference at Philadelphia Park Wednesday that Someday Farm's undefeated Smarty Jones suffered a foot bruise before the May 1 Kentucky Derby (gr. I), but it quickly cleared up and the colt was able to maintain a normal training schedule.

Jersey-Bred Program Gets Boost From Subsidy

The New Jersey breeding program will benefit from a four-year agreement reached between New Jersey's Thoroughbred and Standardbred horsemen, as well as its casino industry, officials announced May 25 at a press luncheon at Monmouth Park to celebrate the May 29 opening of the 2004 racing season.

'Battery' Jockey Banished from Philly Park

A Commonwealth Court judge has affirmed an order by the Pennsylvania Horse Racing Commission that upholds the ejection of jockey Orlando Bocachica from the grounds of Philadelphia Park after he admitted to using a battery on numerous occasions during morning training hours, but not during an actual race.

Proposed Lease of Monmouth Park Topic of Meeting

The second of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority's Monmouth Park Stakeholders Committee meetings is scheduled for Feb. 11, and the topic is scheduled to be the lease of the racetrack. The NJSEA has said it's exploring the possibility of leasing Monmouth and Meadowlands.

New Jersey OTB Parlors Might Be On Fast Track

A "master participation agreement" between the three entities that operate racetracks in New Jersey as to how they intend to divide the 15 potential off-track wagering sites in the state will be considered at the Feb. 18 meeting of the New Jersey Racing Commission. Approval of the deal is seen as the first step toward jump-starting the process of getting OTB parlors operational, perhaps by the end of the year.

Casino Purse Supplement Considered in New Jersey

Under a plan being considered by the New Jersey legislature, the governor's office, and the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, Thoroughbred and Standardbred purses could be supplemented by revenue from Atlantic City casinos, possibly this year.

Judge: Motion Against New Jersey THA Without Merit

New Jersey Superior Court Judge Alexander Lehrer ruled Jan. 5 that the New Jersey Racing Commission's allegations of fiscal mismanagement against the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association were without legal merit, and that the commission cannot amend its complaint to include a claim against New Jersey THA counsel Dennis Drazin, specifically for the legal fees paid to him.

New Jersey Commission Seeks Fine of Horsemen's Group

Although the New Jersey Racing Commission has asked a state court judge to levy a large fine against the state's Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, and for permission to take over the finances of the organization because of gross mismanagement, one of its top officers said he is confident that the complaint will be dismissed.

Pennsylvania Slots Legislation Delayed Once Again

The Republican-controlled Pennsylvania Senate returned to a brief session July 28 but didn't consider racetrack slots legislation. It previously had buried a bill passed by the House, and it had predicted it would be after Labor Day before it considers the topic again.

Dates Cut in New Jersey Opposed by Horsemen

At a meeting of the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association at Monmouth Park Wednesday night, horsemen opposed a proposal to cut September dates at the Oceanport track to 3 days per week in order to keep purses at the current $300,000 level.

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