A memorial service for Kjell H. Qvale, a former majority owner and president of Golden Gate Fields and a longtime owner and breeder of racehorses in California, will be held Nov. 14 at 2 p.m. PST in San Francisco.
Veteran Northern California trainer Dennis Patterson, a well-respected horseman known for his old school approach to conditioning, died at his home in San Mateo on the night of April 4 with his family at his side. He was 77.
Nat Wess, a longtime presence on the racing scene in California and Minnesota, retired December 31, 2009, completing a 45-year career in thoroughbred racing.
The California Horse Racing Board got a bit of good news March 19 when the president of Hollywood Park assured commissioners that it would run its 2009 fall/winter meet as planned. The board also received an update on bankruptcy developments from Magna Entertainment Corp.
A lawsuit aimed at preventing redevelopment of the Bay Meadows race track site has been dropped by a San Mateo preservationist group that agreed to settle the case with the property owner and the city of San Mateo.
Industry stakeholders received a tongue-lashing from Richard Shapiro, chairman of the California Horse Racing Board, as the agency took its first swipe at a race dates calendar for 2009.
A group trying to prevent the redevelopment of the Bay Meadows race track won a round in court and gained a delay in a hearing of the petition it has brought against the developer and the city of San Mateo.
On Aug. 22 the Honorable Judge George Miram of the San Mateo County Superior Court denied a temporary restraining order sought by the Friends of Bay Meadows seeking to halt the scheduled auction of Bay Meadows memorabilia and commercial assets.
At least two lawsuits styled as class-action efforts have been filed in California against Scientific Games Corp. over the "quick-picks" wagering situation that came to light following the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).
Bay Meadows wrapped up 74 years of racing with the $63,450 Last Dance Stakes Aug. 17 and fittingly, it was trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, winner of 37 consecutive training titles at the San Mateo track, who had the honor of winning the final race with a filly named You Lift Me Up.
All assets of Bay Meadows, the historic California track which is conducting its final 10-day meet, will be auctioned Aug. 23-25.
Hollywood Park plans to race for at least one more year, the California Horse Racing Board was told June 27, while the racing industry in Southern California has "coalesced" around Fairplex Park as the region's eventual replacement for the Inglewood track.
Bay Meadows developers plan to move ahead with its demolition schedule in spite of a pending Oct. 10 court hearing on a lawsuit by a group trying to preserve the track, a senior planner for the city of San Mateo said June 25.
A request for an additional 1% takeout hike to help pay for facility improvements at Alameda County Fair, the heir apparent to the closing Bay Meadows, hit a wall of opposition before the California Horse Racing Board May 20.
All-time leading jockey Russell Baze won his final race at Bay Meadows, known over the years as "Baze Meadows" due to his long record of success there, as the San Mateo track's last winter/spring meet came to an end May 11.
After more than 15 years of uncertainty over its future, Bay Meadows appears headed for its last call. May 11 is the final day of the current spring stand for the oldest continually operating racetrack in California.
With the hour glass emptying on Bay Meadows and perhaps Hollywood Park as well, the California Horse Racing Board heard from industry representatives working on contingency plans for the future of Thoroughbred racing in the state without two of its major tracks.
Bay Meadows Race Course, whose final spring meeting ends next month, is hosting a reunion of retired jockeys and other racing personnel during its April 26 racing program, which is headlined by the $125,000 Bay Meadows Breeders' Cup Handicap.
Jockey Russell Baze won five races at Bay Meadows April 3.
Autism Awareness, 62-1 winner of Bay Meadows' El Camino Real Derby (gr. III) March 8, is off the Triple Crown trail with an injured left foreleg, owner Johnny Taboada said March 11.
The March 8 El Camino Real Derby program at Bay Meadows was marred by a four-horse spill in the fifth race. Jockeys David Lopez and Luis Martinez were taken to Stanford Hospital following the race.
Heavy favorite Vicarino broke the five-furlong track mark at Bay Meadows Feb. 21 even though he spotted his rivals a head start in the $42,400 sprint feature.
Golden Gate Fields experienced an increase in all-sources handle and a decrease in catastrophic injuries during its first meet with a synthetic surface.
Now that voters in California have decisively approved a massive increase in Indian gaming for four large Southern California tribes, the chairman of the state's horse racing board says it is time for the tribal casinos to help out his ailing industry with financial mitigation.
The Thoroughbred Owners of California has given limited consent to New York's off-track betting corporations to accept wagers on California races, but is holding firm on its stance against allowing wagers from the companies'out-of-state account deposit wagering customers.
TVG's will air on-site reports from the Northern California track.
The racing industry in California is split on referendums that would allow Indian tribes to add thousands of slot machines to their casinos.
Bay Meadows Race Course begins its final regular season meet next month, but questions remain about whether this is really the farewell stand for the 74-year-old track.
The impact of television on account wagering will be watched closely during an experiment in California that began Nov. 7 with the opening of Golden Gate Fields and Hollywood Park.
- By Jack Shinar
Jockey Russell Baze, who went into the Bay Meadows program the night of Oct. 19 with 12 wins in his past 14 mounts, cooled off under showery skies at the San Mateo, Calif., track.
Opponents of California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's deals with four Indian casino tribes -- which would substantially increase the number of slot machines in the state -- began turning in signatures they hope will allow voters a chance in February to challenge the compacts.
Given reasonable assurance that Bay Meadows would remain open throughout 2008 for training and stabling, the California Horse Racing Board approved a statewide dates plan for the coming year during its Sept. 27 meeting in Arcadia.
Live racing at Bay Meadows Race Course would end with the conclusion of the San Mateo County Fair race meet Aug. 18, 2008, under a dates plan given preliminary approval by the California Horse Racing Board's strategic planning committee Sept. 20.
California fairs offer a realistic option for horse racing's future at a time when two major racetracks in the state are facing redevelopment and other privately held venues are pressured by stockholders for greater revenue returns amid escalating property values.
An apologetic Russell Baze was suspended for 15 days by Bay Meadows stewards and fined $2,500 Aug. 26 for misusing his whip as the result of a complaint arising from an incident at the Bay Area track last week.
Bay Meadows stewards say they are deliberating whether to take action against Hall of Fame jockey Russell Baze following a hearing the morning of Aug. 25 into a riding incident that generated contoversy.
Trainer Armando Lage recorded career victory 1,000 Aug. 13 when his 3-year-old colt Son Montuno rallied from off the pace to win the fourth race at the San Mateo County Fair at Bay Meadows.
Trying to cure a scheduling headache, the California Horse Racing Board has started planning for the future -- with or without Bay Meadows and Hollywood Park. At an Aug. 10 meeting at Del Mar, the CHRB's dates committee took the first step in piecing together a cohesive three-year calendar.
The California Horse Racing Board has approved a one-year conditional waiver from the state mandate for synthetic surfaces for Bay Meadows.
Legislation that would change the current membership of the commission that oversees horse racing in California and require other "ethics reform" was introduced by State Senator Leland Yee June 26.
The California Horse Racing Board agreed in principle June 19 to a one-year waiver in 2008 from the state's synthetic track mandate for Bay Meadows. But the board can't make it official until its next meeting.
With State Sen. Leland Yee in attendance at its May 22 meeting in Sacramento, the California Horse Racing Board threw open the possibility that Bay Meadows could resume racing in 2008.
The California Senate budget review committee said it would remove funding for the California Horse Racing Board unless the regulatory agency addresses problems and improves communication.
By John C. Harris - I sadly realize that Bay Meadows, which is the longest continually running racetrack in California history, is destined to go away, probably in the not-too-distant future. However, Northern California may be irreparably damaged if the track is not even part of the mix for 2008 when racing dates are discussed by the CHRB later this year.
- By Ray Paulick
By Ray Paulick - The CHRB's mandate is not only the right thing to do for the safety of horses, it is a benefit to owners, too, and ultimately for the tracks. Fewer injuries ensures there will be more horses in training, which will lead to larger field sizes, which usually translates to increased pari-mutuel handle. Owners are always happier to have horses racing and training rather than convalescing or recovering.
California state senator Leland Yee introduced a resolution March 29 calling for the resignation of Richard Shapiro, the chairman of the California Horse Racing Board, following a vote a week earlier causing the likely closure of the historic Bay Meadows horse track in San Mateo.
Faced with eventual closure of Bay Meadows, the California Horse Racing Board doomed the 73-year-old race course rather than grant a two-year waiver of its edict mandating that all major Thoroughbred tracks in the state install synthetic surfaces by the end of the year.
The California Horse Racing Board will webcast its March 22 meeting at Bay Meadows and will consider continuing the experiment at subsequent monthly meetings.
Wagering on races from Bay Meadows and Santa Anita Park wasn't available anywhere in Ohio March 10 as a dispute between Beulah Park and horsemen lingers.
Trainer Brian Pitnick has been fined $3,000 by Bay Meadows stewards for rule violations after a horse under his care, Theycallme Mr. Tim, exceeded the regulatory threshold of 37 millimeters for total carbon dioxide, the California Horse Racing Board reported March 7.
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