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Headlines and features from the Thoroughbred industry

Battle Won Gets Post Five in Hong Kong Sprint

Battle Won Gets Post Five in Hong Kong Sprint

Battle Won, the lone American runner in the Dec.12 Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Sprint (HK-I) at Sha Tin, drew post five in a field of 13 runners for the $10 million (HK) 1,000-meter (five furlong) race. The four-race Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International race card was drawn inside the new $410-million (HK) retractable roof walking ring at Sha Tin.

John Lee Elected President of Turf Publicists

John Lee, director of broadcasting for the New York Racing Association, was elected president of the Turf Publicists of America, which announced its slate of officers during the Racing Industry Symposium at the University of Arizona Dec. 8.

Antonius Pius Gets Outside Post in Hong Kong Mile

Irish jockey Jamie Spencer will have multiple views of Sha Tin Racecourse Dec. 12 during the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Races. He will guide Powerscourt from the inside, breaking from barrier one in the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup (HK-I), Brian Boru from barrier four in the $14 million (HK) Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Vase (HK-I), and Antonius Pius from the far outside barrier 14 in the $14 million (HK) Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Mile (HK-I).

Big Sport of Turfdom Awarded to John Servis

John Servis, the Philadelphia Park-based trainer who nearly guided Smarty Jones to the Triple Crown while at the same time accommodating a throng of media following them, has been named the winner of the 2004 Big Sport of Turdom Award presented by the Turf Publicists of America.

Worldwide Woes

Worldwide Woes

By Ray Paulick - In many ways, the Japan Racing Association is the envy of the racing world. As a branch of the national government's ministry of agriculture, forestry, and fisheries, the JRA controls all facets of the industry, including racecourse management, scheduling, marketing, licensing, drug testing, and pari-mutuel operations.

Original Thinking

By Pete Spanos - With the leaves still falling from Keeneland's splendid 2004 fall meet, it is appropriate, perhaps obligatory, to offer a fan's salute to the old guard's open minds, adventurous spirits, and free-thinking ways. Yes, I said Keeneland. Who would have thought they could be such radicals?

Guild Extends Matrix Capital Contract Through 2009

Guild Extends Matrix Capital Contract Through 2009

The Jockeys' Guild wrapped up its annual assembly Dec. 7 with the announcement that the contract of Matrix Capital Associates, headed by Dr. Wayne Gertmenian, has been extended through 2009. In addition, jockey Kent Desormeaux, who has said he was conducting due diligence into Guild business practices, failed to win re-election to the Guild senate and no longer sits on the executive committee.

VLT Legislation Introduced in New York

VLT Legislation Introduced in New York

Legislation has been introduced in New York to sweeten the pot for racetracks operating video lottery terminals, and to encourage the New York Racing Association's VLT partner to begin construction of a new casino at Aqueduct.

Prominent Producer Blitey Dead

Prominent Producer Blitey Dead

Blitey, a homebred graded stakes winner and stakes producer for the late Ogden Phipps, was euthanized Nov. 26 at the Hancock family's Claiborne Farm near Paris, Ky., because of complications from the infirmities of old age.

Guild Tight-Lipped at Assembly; King Voted Out

Guild Tight-Lipped at Assembly; King Voted Out

The Jockeys' Guild began its annual meeting Dec. 6 with a call for solidarity -- even in the face of the dismissal of member Eddie King, who had sued the organization -- and a call for members not to talk to the press.

Fund Overseers Confident New Plan Can Work

Former jockeys associated with the Disabled Jockeys' Fund, which will be terminated at the end of the year, on Dec. 6 said they're comfortable with a plan by the Jockeys' Guild to make payments to disabled riders from the Guild's primary account.

ReRun's Headquarters Relocate; Co-Founders Depart

ReRun, Inc., the national Thoroughbred adoption program founded by Shon Wylie and Lori Neagle, will relocate its national headquarters from Kentucky to New Jersey, effective in January.

For NTRA, Membership Scheme a Priority for 2005

With membership contracts set to expire at the end of 2005, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association is formulating a long-range strategy that is expected to rely on dues in some form. Meanwhile, the search for a chief executive officer won't begin until the master plan is in place.

Despite Increasing Controversy, Guild Seeks Solidarity

As the Jockeys' Guild prepares for its annual meeting in Irving, Texas, Dec. 6-7, organization management is under increasing fire from the racing industry and some of its own members. Still, the Guild appears poised to make a case for solidarity, and it remains to be seen whether substantial change will come about during the two-day meeting.

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