News

Headlines and features from the Thoroughbred industry

NYRA Hopeful for Quarantine Exemption

Hoof and mouth quarantine restrictions on imported European horses is keeping some horses out of major Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships prep races at Belmont Park. NYRA hopes to secure an exemption to the quarantine rules next week and have a quarantine facility at Aqueduct set up in time for races on Sept. 29.

Point Given Retired After Injury; Stud Plans Undecided

Leading Horse of the Year candidate Point Given has been retired because of a strain to the suspensory tendon of his left foreleg, trainer Bob Baffert announced on Friday. The strain was detected on Thursday morning, when Point Given had been expected to return to the track for the first time after his victory in last Saturday's Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga. "I've had to retire a lot of good horses, but I never felt like this," Baffert said. "We were just beginning to tap into his greatness."

Portland Meadows Opening Delayed

Portland Meadows will not open Sept. 1 as planned because the Environmental Protection Agency has rejected a plan to keep contaminated storm water from leaving the racetrack property. Magna Entertainment was notified Tuesday that the plan was rejected. The environmental problems could accelerate the company's plans to build a new racetrack in the area.

Policy, Finances Reduce 'America's Day' Numbers

Policy issues and financial considerations have reduced the number of tracks participating in America's Day at the Races, which will be held Labor Day. The event, first held in 1997, could be retooled in the future, a National Thoroughbred Racing Association official said.

Millionaires Top Palomar Field

Millionaires Tranquility Lake and Tout Charmant head a field of seven fillies and mares in Saturday's grade II, $150,000 Palomar Handicap at 1 1/16 miles over Del Mar's Jimmy Durante Turf Course.

Tiznow Works Toward Return to Competition

Tiznow, last year's Horse of the Year and Breeders' Cup Classic winner, worked seven furlongs on the fast main track at Del Mar this morning in 1:25 4/5. Trainer Jay Robbins plans to ship the horse tomorrow to Belmont Park, where he will run in the grade I, $500,000 Woodward at nine furlongs on "Super Saturday," September 8.

Virginia Plan Irks Maryland Commissioner

At the Aug. 30 Maryland Racing Commission meeting at Ocean Downs, commissioner Terry Saxon erupted in anger over a letter from Colonial Downs president Ian Stewart in regard to the Virginia track's plan to apply for another summer meet next year.

Broken Vow to Stand at Pin Oak

Broken Vow, who won the Aug. 26 Philip H. Iselin Handicap (gr. II) at Monmouth Park for his third consecutive stakes win and his fourth in his last five starts, will enter stud in 2002 at Josephine Abercrombie's Pin Oak Stud near Versailles, Ky.

Youbet Opens Oregon Hub, Adjusts Price for Users

Youbet.com today announced the opening of its new Oregon wagering hub. The new hub allows Youbet.com customers access to racetracks previously available only through the TV Games Network. Along with the new hub, Youbet has adjusted its price. The service now charges a fee per transaction instead of a monthly fee.

Team Valor Announces Scholarship Winner

Team Valor has selected Iona College sophomore Marie Taylor as the recipient of its inaugural Valordictorian Award. The 19-year-old resident of Floral Park, N.Y., will be presented with a $25,000 check by Team Valor president Barry Irwin after the fifth race at Saratoga Friday.

Penn National Gaming to Buy Colorado Casinos

Penn National Gaming has agreed to purchase the assets of the Bullwhackers Casino operations from Colorado Gaming and Entertainment Co., a subsidiary of Hilton Group, for $6.5 million in cash. The Pennsylvania-based company already has gaming holdings in Louisiana and West Virginia.

NTRA Ups Prize, Expands 'Mystery Voucher' Promo

The grand prize for the National Thoroughbred Racing Association's Mystery Mutuel Voucher promotion has been increased from $1 million to $1.25 million, effective with the Nov. 23 promotion. In 2002, the NTRA will offer four Mystery Mutuel Voucher promotions successively worth an additional $250,000 until the grand prize is won.

Seabiscuit and Best-Selling Author Featured on National TV

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Seabiscuit, the rags-to-riches Thoroughbred hero of the 1930s, and Laura Hillenbrand, the author who wrote the best-selling book detailing the life of the horse and his connections, were featured Wednesday on ABC's "Good Morning America" program.

Kentucky Offers Itself as Drug-Testing Model

The Kentucky Racing Commission believes it is at the forefront of equine drug testing, and it plans to take the lead in implementing recommendations of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Racing Integrity and Drug Testing Task Force report released Aug. 19 in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

Kentucky Industry Again Makes Its Pitch

More than 30 legislators listened Wednesday afternoon as Kentucky racing officials explained the challenges faced by the industry, including mare reproductive loss syndrome and competition from gaming operations in neighboring states. No solutions or suggestions were offered during the hearing at Papa John's Stadium in Louisville, but they might be just around the corner.

Tourtelot, Granzella Appointed to California Committee

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Robert Tourtelot, chairman of the California Horse Racing Board, appointed himself and Commissioner Sheryl Granzella to an ad hoc committee on Wednesday to assist in implementing the labor provisions of a new law.

Sabona to Illinois

Grade I winner Sabona has been moved to Illinois Stud near Woodstock, Ill., where he will stand for $1,500.

Hettinger to Receive Industry Service Award

John Hettinger, winner of a Special Eclipse Award in 2000, has been selected recipient of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association Industry Service Award. Hettinger, owner of Akindale Farm in Pawling, N.Y., will receive the award at the TOBA National Awards Dinner Sept. 7 at Adena Springs Farm in Midway, Ky.

Travers Report: Glory Train

Beads of sweat trickled down the face of Prince Ahmed Salman as he entered the winner's circle to await his conquering hero. He was so overwhelmed by what he had just witnessed, even the roar of 60,486 appreciative fans, the largest crowd in Saratoga history, was drowned out by the beating of his own heart.

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