News

Headlines and features from the Thoroughbred industry

Calder Offers Grand Slam I Saturday

On Saturday, Calder Race Course hosts Grand Slam I, with four stakes races offered with purses of $100,000 each. The four Grand Slam I races, consisting of three graded stakes and the Three Ring Stakes, will comprise a $100,000 guaranteed pick four.

The Wicked North to Silvernails

The Wicked North, Eclipse Award champion older male of 1994, and a leader among second-crop sires last year, has been moved from Mira Loma Thoroughbred Farm in California to stand the 2001 breeding season at James and Lorna Mack's Silvernails Farm near Pine Plains, N.Y.

Jockey Club Launches New Specialized, Real-Time Service

After more than a year of planning, The Jockey Club Information Systems, Inc. (TJCIS) announced today the launch of equineline.com, a new Internet-based equine portfolio service, scheduled to go on line Monday. The new service, developed with assistance from owners, breeders, trainers and farm managers nationwide, provides information constantly updated in real-time.

J.B. Faulconer, 'Father of the Eclipse Awards,' Dies

J.B. Faulconer, the fist full-time publicity director at Keeneland who is credited with starting the Eclipse Awards, died Tuesday in Vero Beach, Fla., at age 81. In addition to naming and organizing the Eclipse Awards in 1971, Faulconer was executive vice president of Thoroughbred Racing Associations of North America from 1976-1988 and was an assistant to Oaklawn Park chairman Charles Cella.

Bear Stearns is Bullish on Racing

New technology is giving the horse racing industry its greatest potential to convert millions of new fans and substantially increase profits, according to a recently released analysis by the Bear Stearns investment bank.

Tattersalls December Sales Continues to Soar

The average and gross continued to soar Wednesday at the December sale conducted by Tattersalls at its Park Paddocks in Newmarket, England, with U.S. interests well represented among the buyers. The day's top price of 1,700,000 guineas (about US$2,552,550) was paid by Eddie O'Leary for Brocatelle, a half-sister to group I winner and successful stallion Barathea owned by Gerald Leigh.

Dissidents Present Case to NTRA Board; Stronach Discussions Continue

No major developments emerged from a meeting of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association board of directors, which was presented with a report prepared by many of the 22 racetracks that said they are dropping out of the NTRA at the end of the year. Meanwhile, the organization plans to continue discussions with Magna Entertainment chairman Frank Stronach concerning his proposals for the NTRA.

Chemists: Drug Super Tests Could Create Nightmare

In a letter to the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, a group of chemists and veterinarians who form the Testing Integrity Program has warned that "super testing," as it is called, could create a public relations nightmare for the racing industry should the betting public believe use of illegal medications is rampant.

TCA Auction Tops $1 Million

A two-location auction of over 200 stallion seasons has raised more than $1 million for the Thoroughbred Charities of America (The exact dollar figure will be released when all tallies are complete).

Stronach Forum Rescheduled

Frank Stronach's forum to discuss the major issues facing Thoroughbred racing will be Jan. 14. The forum was moved to avoid a conflict with the Keeneland mixed sale.

French Deputy Going to Japan

French Deputy, an 8-year-old son of Deputy Minister, has been sold to Shadai Corp. of Hokkaido, Japan, according to Robert Clay, syndicate manager and owner of Three Chimneys Farm near Midway, Ky. The purchase price was not disclosed, and the deal is subject to a veterinary examination and blood testing. No travel plans have been announced for the stallion, yet.

LA Times: Few Details Released About Antley Arrest

Chris Antley and a friend were arrested in September after a drug-related incident at the late jockey's southern California home, but no charges were filed against the two, according to the Los Angeles Times. The newspaper reported Wednesday that Antley 34, and Timothy Tyler, 24, were arrested Sept. 24.

No Definite Timetable for Garden State's Demise

The sale of Garden State Park to a development company is viewed as the death knell for live racing at the southern New Jersey track, but officials weren't able to say when the last live race will be run. Pennwood Racing, which leases Garden State, is said to have applied for a Thoroughbred meet; the application must be in to the New Jersey Racing Commission by Friday. A previous request from Pennwood to race six days at Garden State in 2001 was rejected by the commission.

New Sires for 2001: Pegasus Parade

Every few years there's a new stallion prospect(s) that gets the world of horse racing excited. Think back to the 1970s; Triple Crown winners Secretariat, Seattle Slew, and Affirmed, along with Affirmed's rival Alydar, immediately come to mind. Then there is the 1980s with Spectacular Bid, Conquistador Cielo, and Devil's Bag, followed by Easy Goer in 1991 and Cigar in 1997. This time, it's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Fusaichi Pegasus.

NTRA Appoints Sponsorship Sales Agency

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Wedcnesday the appointment of Host Communications as the NTRA's sponsorship sales agency. A full-time NTRA account executive will be named by Host Communications to head up its national sales efforts and will be based in Lexington, Ky. The NTRA in-house team will be led by Bryan Pettigrew, who has been promoted from Special Assistant to the Commissioner to Vice President-Sponsorships, effective immediately.

Santa Anita Management Warns of Possible Layoffs

The president of Santa Anita cautioned Tuesday that downsizing and possible layoffs may occur at the Arcadia, Calif. track, which was purchased by his boss, Frank Stronach, two years ago. Only on the job for two weeks, Jack Liebau said that Stronach's company, Magna Entertainment, is re- evaluating operations at its seven racetracks across the United States. Liebau issued a one-page memo to Santa Anita employees last Thursday alerting them to potential future changes.

Del Mar Gives $10-Million to State of California

For the second year in a row, the State of California realized a payment of $10 million for the summer race meet conducted by Del Mar Thoroughbred Club on the fairgrounds at Del Mar. In addition to an exact rent payment of $7,170,000 tendered by DMTC for the 2000 racing season, the 43-day session generated net income of $2.8 million in food and beverage sales to push revenues to $10 million, equaling the record mark established in 1999.

Eclipse Dinner Date, Location Changed

The Eclipse Award dinner honoring champions of 2000 has been changed to a new date and location, according to the National Thoroughbred Racing Association. Originally scheduled for the New Orleans Ritz-Carlton on Monday, Jan. 29, 2001, the dinner will be held one day later, Jan. 30, at the Saenger Theatre, also in New Orleans.

Curious Activities

By Ray Paulick -- Far be it for a country bumpkin in Kentucky to understand the politics of racing in a place like New Jersey, but I try, and there are some things going on there that just do not make sense to this simple mind.

Nureyev Filly Tops Tattersalls' First Session

The Tattersalls December Mares Sale, Europe's leading breeding stock sale, got underway at Park Paddocks in Newmarket, England on Monday. The sales company reported the average was up 5% to 33,502 guineas on the corresponding day last year and the median rose 11% to 21,000 guineas, with the day's trade grossing 6,398,900 guineas.

Antley Memorial Tuesday; Probe Continues

As police continue their probe into the apparent murder of jockey Chris Antley, a memorial service will be held today in Arcadia, Calif. Antley, 34, was found dead late Saturday as a result of trauma to the head. The service will be at 1:00 (PST; 4:00 p.m. EST) at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Arcadia. The county coroner has also scheduled an autopsy for Tuesday.

Horse Mania Auction Nets $757,600

A handful of folks accustomed to making headlines in the Keeneland sales pavilion joined a group of horse-owning neophytes Saturday evening at the Horse Mania auction. The event began June 29 in Lexington with 79 fiberglass horses-turned-art set out around town. The culmination of Horse Mania, sponsored by Lexington's Arts and Cultural Council, took place Dec. 2 when 78 members of the herd brought $757,600 at auction.

Antley's Hometown Reflects on Favorite Son

Trainer Franklin Smith, who gave then 14-year-old Chris Antley his first job in racing, and others in the late jockey's hometown of Elloree, S. C. are trying to deal with the news that the rider was killed. Although Antley had not lived in Elloree for about 18 years, The (Columbia, S. C.) State newspaper reported he was a frequent visitor who never forgot his roots. "Everyone around this community kept up with Chris' career and asked about him all the time," Smith told the newspaper.

The Charismatic Chris Antley

By Lenny Shulman -- As tortured as he was inside, Chris Antley was warm and engaging to friends and strangers alike. His openness in revealing his inner thoughts was disarming. He told stories about trainers that would have cost him his business had they been printed. Chris Antley may well have trusted everyone else, including the person who ended his life, too much, and himself not enough.

Average, Median Prices Soar at Tattersalls Foal Sale

The average rose 29% and the median price was up 49% during the four days of foal sales conducted by Tattesalls Ltd. at the company's paddocks in Newmarket, England. The foal portion of the sale preceded the sale of broodmares and horses in training that began Monday. Tattersalls reported 608 lots sold for 14,677,400 guineas, with the average increasing 29% to a record 24,140 guineas and the median up 49% to 12,500 guineas. A total of 26 foals made 100,000 guineas or more compared with 21 last year.

New Texas Track Proposal Draws Local Opposition

Efforts to build a new racetrack in Austin, Texas, were dealt a blow last week when a local neighborhood council voted to oppose the Austin Jockey Club. The impact the action will have on the proposed track is unclear, because the council is not an official city agency, nor does it have any authority over local zoning changes.

Sky Jack Romps in Native Diver

Sky Jack set a brisk early pace under jockey Laffit Pincay Jr. and drew away to a seven-length win in the $100,000 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III), Sunday at Hollywood Park. The 4-year-old son of Jaklin Klugman completed the 1 1/8 miles in 1:46.81.

Chris's Thunder Retired After Leggio Win; To Be Bred to Charismatic

Owner Michael Schwartz announced the retirement of Chris's Thunder Saturday, shortly after the 5-year-old mare won the $60,000 Dr. A.B. Leggio Memorial Handicap at Fair Grounds. Chris's Thunder, who won five of her last six starts and each of her last five turf races, will be bred to Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner Charismatic in January.

Peslier Wins Jockey Series; Bailey Fourth

Olivier Peslier rode a winner on both days of the 14th World Super Jockeys Series en route to winning the four-race series by 13 points over Yutaka Take Sunday in Japan. Peslier was tied for third behind Jerry Bailey and Australian Damien M. Oliver after Saturday's two series races but rallied Sunday to clinch the victory.

Longtime Jockey Agent Dominguez Dies

Juan A. Dominguez Sr. died Sunday morning after a brief illness. In Dominguez's long career as a jockey agent, he handled the book for riders such as Eddie Maple, Miguel Rivera, Ruben Hernandez, and Eclipse Award winning apprentice Ramon Perez.

California Board Delays Approval of Advertising Plan

A proposal to allow advertisements on jockeys' and horses' equipment is having a hard time getting off the ground in California. The trial project has received support among owners', jockeys and some racetracks but the California Horse Racing Board delayed making the needed changes at its meeting Friday.

Police Pursuing 'All Possible Suspects' in Antley's Death

A purported associate of the late jockey Chris Antley has been arrested on charges unrelated to the rider's death Saturday night. Antley was pronounced dead at his southern California home as a result of "severe trauma to the head." Timothy Wyman Tyler Jr., 24, of Dana Point, was being held in lieu of $45,000 bail on warrants involving drugs and driving under the influence, police said.

Timber Country to Dubai

U.S. classic winner and overseas stallion Timber Country will stand the 2001 season in Dubai. The 8-year-old son of Woodman will stand under a lease arrangement at Sheikh Mohammed's Emirates Stud Farm.

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