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California Jockeys, Guild Work on Health Insurance

Jockeys in California, concerned over the rising costs of insurance offered by the national Jockeys' Guild, are looking elsewhere for alternative coverage, though they're continuing talks with Guild management, several California jockeys confirmed Dec. 12.

Equine Affaire to be Held at Fairplex Park

Equine Affaire, a North American horse exposition, will return to Fairplex Park near Pomona, Calif. Feb. 1-4 with a line-up of clinics, demonstrations, and seminars.

California ADW Rivals Near Signal Agreement

California customers of rival account deposit wagering companies TVG and XpressBet would be able to play any track in the state with their preferred carrier under an agreement being negotiated on a one-year experimental basis.

Baze, Pincay Prepare for Record

Baze, Pincay Prepare for Record

Russell Baze, with 9,519 career wins, still needs 11 victories to equal Laffit Pincay Jr.'s record as the winningest jockey of all time. But both riders are already getting geared up for the big moment.

Account-Bet Dispute Lingers; CHRB May Act

The simmering dispute between the organization representing California's horse owners and the racing television and wagering network TVG appeared unlikely to be resolved heading into the Oct. 26 meeting of the California Horse Racing Board.

Council OKs Dixon Downs; Opponents Want Vote

Dixon Downs, Magna Entertainment Corp.'s "dream track" for Northern California, got a giant step closer to reality the evening of Oct. 23. But a local group that opposes the project is pushing for a referendum on the project in 2007.

Lava Man Ships Early, Settles in at Keeneland

Lava Man Ships Early, Settles in at Keeneland

After shipping into Kentucky Oct. 10, the California-based Lava Man is adjusting well to his new surroundings at Keeneland Race Course as he preps for the $5- million Breeders' Cup Classic - Powered by Dodge (gr. I) at Churchill Downs Nov. 4. According to trainer Doug O'Neill, the 5-year-old gelding settled in without a problem and is galloping daily over Keeneland's new Polytrack synthetic surface.

Reducing Races, Not Days, Goal of CHRB Committee

Reducing Races, Not Days, Goal of CHRB Committee

Reducing the number of racing events without the loss of a significant number of actual racing days in the North was the goal of the California Horse Racing Board's Strategic Alliance Planning Committee, which met for the final time Oct. 12 before making a final 2007 dates recommendation to the full board.

Shapiro: No Quick Fixes for California Racing

California racing has declined dramatically in the past 20 years and it needs to stop looking for easy answers, said Richard Shapiro, chairman of the state's horse racing board, during a dinner attended by about 150 breeders Sept. 22.

Arthur Tells Breeders He Wants Vets Accountable

Dr. Rick Arthur, the new equine medical director of the California Horse Racing Board, told a meeting of state horse breeders Sept. 22 that he plans to hold veterinarians accountable when trainers they advise are found in violation of horse medication rules.

Return for Deposit

Return for Deposit

By Ray Paulick - Increased distribution along with the convenience of telephone or Internet betting resulted in double-digit increases of advance deposit wagering handle in 2003-2005. Del Mar reported a 24% increase one year ago, which makes this year's 7% drop all the more puzzling -- and alarming.

California Implants Microchips in 500 Thoroughbreds

Under a no-cost-to-the-owner, voluntary program approved by the California Horse Racing Board utilizing federal grants, microchips have been implanted in almost 500 Thoroughbreds at Southern California racetracks over the last two months for health, security, and inventory purposes, and there is sufficient funding for another 3,500 horses, or roughly a third of the Thoroughbreds that race in Southern California during any 12-month period.

California Stewards: Valenzuela Can Exercise Horses

California Stewards: Valenzuela Can Exercise Horses

Embattled jockey Patrick Valenzuela, who hasn't ridden since the conclusion of the spring/summer meet at Hollywood Park July 16, was given clearance to resume exercising horses Sept. 7 after meeting with Del Mar stewards the morning of Sept. 6.

CHRB Group Focuses On Revamping Dates

Reducing the dates calendar while increasing the overall quality of racing and the possible closure of two major racing facilities remained the focus of the California Horse Racing Board's "Strategic Alliance Planning Committee," which met for the second time at Del Mar on Aug. 28.

City Staff Urges Approval of Dixon Downs Plan

Six years after Magna Entertainment Corp. first pitched its idea, Dixon, Calif., city staff officially recommended the approval of Dixon Downs, a $250 million state-of-the-art racetrack and training center proposed for the rural town 20 miles west of Sacramento.

Lost in the Fog to Undergo Tests Friday

Lost in the Fog to Undergo Tests Friday

Doctors at the University of California-Davis veterinary school will run extensive tests on Lost in the Fog Friday in order to determine whether they will perform surgery to remove what is believed to be a cancerous mass from his spleen.

Lost in the Fog Treated for Colic

Lost in the Fog Treated for Colic

Last year's Eclipse Award-winning sprinter Lost in the Fog is being treated for "a slight case" of colic at the University of California-Davis veterinary school, according to his trainer, Greg Gilchrist, who accompanied his stable star to Davis.

TOC Acts on Northern California Recommendations

As part of an effort to address concerns raised by several Northern California members, the Thoroughbred Owners of California held an open forum July 28 at Golden Gate Fields and pledged to act on several recommendations.

Owner Levels Conflict Charge at Calif. Steward

Disgruntled horse owner Jerry Jamgotchian, whose colt Past Tender was disqualified from victory in a July 28 race at Del Mar, has filed a conflict of interest complaint against one of the stewards involved and also protested the decision to the California Horse Racing Board.

Mullins Awaits Split-Sample Results; Barns Searched

Mullins Awaits Split-Sample Results; Barns Searched

Trainer Jeff Mullins said he was informed by the California Horse Racing Board that one of the horses in his care, Robs Coin, tested positive for a prohibited amount of the anesthetic mepivacaine, and that he is awaiting the results of split-sample tests.

CHRB Looks at Safety, Out-of-Competition Testing

The California Horse Racing Board is studying ways to promote the health of racehorses and reduce on-track injuries, as well as implement a plan for out-of-competition testing.

I Declare

By Morton Cathro - If recent action by the California Horse Racing Board should become permanent and be embraced by other states, racing might well see the return of the old, largely forgotten "declaring to win" rule invoked by the umbrella-wielding gentleman of yesteryear--with the unintended consequences it sometimes brings.

Eclipse Expansion

Eclipse Expansion

By Ray Paulick - Keeneland's director of racing, W.B. Rogers Beasley, earlier this year made an interesting case for expansion of the Eclipse Awards from 11 to 15 equine categories (including steeplechasers). Suggested additions were 3-year-old males and 3-year-old fillies on turf, filly and mare sprinters, and turf sprinters.

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