Articles posted January 14, 2002

Headlines and features from the Thoroughbred industry

West Coast Race Fields Improve as Gulfstream Park Feels Slump

While California has worried about declining field sizes for about two years, Santa Anita Park has created hope this year by attracting 20% more starters per race in its first two weeks. On the East Coast, however, average field size has gone from boom to bust. Gulfstream Park came out of its 2001 season with an 8.2% increase in average starters per race, but this year field size lagged 18% during the first week of racing.

Trainer Mendoza Cleared in Medication Case

A board of three stewards at Santa Anita Park ruled that no penalty should be assessed against trainer Jesus (Jesse) Mendoza for a morphine positive found in a horse he trained in June, 2000. The Jan. 10 ruling stated that Mendoza had "mitigated the circumstances of the charge."

Big Spruce Euthanized at Age 32

Prominent runner and successful sire Big Spruce was euthanized Dec. 28 because of the infirmities of old age. The 32-year-old pensioned stallion resided at Graham J. Beck's Gainesway Farm near Lexington. He leaves behind fellow pensioners Lyphard (now 33), Stop the Music, and Irish River.

Ky. Commission Approves Derby Future Wager Dates

The Kentucky Racing Commission on Monday approved the dates for the three Kentucky Derby Future Wager pools. The first pool will run Feb. 14-17, with Pool 2 opening March 14 and closing March 17. The third and final pool will run April 4-7. All pools run from Thursday through Sunday. The 128th renewal of the Derby will be May 4.

William T. Young's Wife, Lucy, Dies

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Lucy Maddox Young, whose husband, William T. Young, built Overbrook Farm near Lexington into one of the nation's leading nurseries, died Jan. 13.

Magna Plans $5-Million 'Sunshine Millions'

An eight-race, $5 million series of races for California- and Florida-bred horses has been approved by the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners Association, the California Thoroughbred Breeders' Association and Magna Entertainment Corp., at whose tracks the races would be run. The plan, however, may face a challenge from the Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association.

Farish: Ambassadorship is Challenging, Exciting

The role of the U. S. Embassy in London, England has taken on added significance since the terrorist bombings of Sept. 11, according to William S. Farish, the Lane's End Farm owner who began his tenure in the diplomatic post last July.

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