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Headlines and features from the Thoroughbred industry

Equine Abortions on Decline in Central Kentucky

Equine abortion numbers continued to decline in Central Kentucky when compared to last year, the University of Kentucky's Livestock Disease and Diagnostic Center in Lexington reports.

'Greatest Game' Plans Events for New Owners

The Greatest Game, Inc. , the horseracing industry program that seeks to expand Thoroughbred ownership by attracting new investors in the sport, will host a series of receptions in Maryland, Florida and Georgia beginning March 17, Gay Fisher, the organization's president announced.

Becerra Taking Things Slowly with St Averil

Even though Rafael Becerra feels St Averil could be the best 3-year-old he's ever trained, the 49-year-old native of Mexico prefers not to look past Sunday's $250,000 San Felipe Stakes (gr. II) at 1 1/16 miles.

Legislators: Industry Greed Killed Kentucky Bill

Kentucky legislators have left open the possibility expanded gambling could be revisited in the future, but they claim greed and resistance by the horse racing and breeding industry put a casino bill on the shelf for the 2004 session. Industry officials disagree with that perspective.

'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.

MEC's Losses Hinder Parent Company MI Developments

MI Developments, a publicly traded real-estate company that owns 59% of the equity in Magna Entertainment Corp., reported big losses during the fourth quarter of 2003 largely as a result of MEC's poor financial performance.

Roussel Offers $30 Million for Fair Grounds

Louie Roussel III, who owned a controlling interest in Fair Grounds until 1990, is the latest to make an offer for the New Orleans track. A week after Churchill Downs Inc. bid $28.5 million for Fair Grounds, Roussel upped the offer to $30 million, according to published reports.

Despite Rough Winter, Turfway Numbers Up

Despite numerous cancellations because of weather or track conditions, Turfway Park has registered business gains during the winter/spring meet that extends through April 1. And with live racing set to resume March 10, it appears the racing surface finally has dried out after a washed-out weekend.

Belinda Stronach Wins Nomination for Canadian Race

Belinda Stronach, daughter of Magna International owner Frank Stronach, won the Conservative Party nomination in Canada March 9 over Lois Brown, a long-time Canadian Alliance worker.

'Field' Opens as Favorite in Second Derby Future Wager

Fountain of Youth (gr. I) winner Read The Footnotes and Lane's End Breeders' Futurity (gr. II) winner Eurosilver are favored among the individual horses, but the wagering interest that includes "all other 3-year-olds" has been installed as the 3-1 morning line favorite for Pool Two of Churchill Downs' 2004 Kentucky Derby Future Wager.

Washington Passes Account Wagering Bill

A bill that would allow account wagering by residents of Washington State passed the state's House of Representatives on March 4 79-17 and yesterday passed the Senate 38-10. Senate Bill 6281 now heads to Gov. Gary Locke for his signature.

Elections Set for Nine Seats on NTRA Board

Elections for nine seats on National Thoroughbred Racing Association board of directors will begin in earnest in late March, but if history holds, the look of the board isn't expected to change that much.

Oklahoma Gaming Bill Signed Into Law

Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry signed a bill Monday that allows electronic gaming machines at three racetracks in the state. A bill-signing ceremony was scheduled for Tuesday.

North Dakota Wants RSI Bankruptcy Case Dismissed

A North Dakota judge has been asked by state Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem to dismiss the Racing Services Inc. bankruptcy case filed by owner Susan Bala because the wagering-company was under the control of a state-appointed receiver at the time of the filing.

Mandella Shooting for Weekend Double at Santa Anita

Trainer Richard Mandella, who last year saddled Halfbridled and Action This Day to wins in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) and the Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I), respectively, will look to make history this weekend by scoring a weekend double in Saturday's $300,000 Santa Anita Oaks (gr. I) and Sunday's $250,000 San Felipe Stakes (gr. I) with his pair of juvenile champions.

Churchill Addresses Kentucky Derby Seating

Patrons accustomed to a bird's-eye view of the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) from Millionaires' Row will instead be watching from the infield this year as a consequence of Churchill Downs $95 million clubhouse renovation.

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