Editorial

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Someday

By Susan Baldrige -- It was a simple farm, nothing fancy, with a quaint farmhouse and an old, stone barn with irregularly shaped box stalls. The farm had one tiny sign with a black horse painted on it that quietly announced you were there. That was exactly three years ago.

Building Blocks

By Ray Paulick -- Somewhere at the Aurora, Canada, corporate headquarters where Frank Stronach sits atop his Magna International and Magna Entertainment Corp. empire, there is a warehouse filled with architectural drawings and miniature models for changes to the racetracks Magna now owns.

Not So Smart

By Gary McMillen -- Sometimes it takes a thorn to get rid of a splinter. Like a Maryland blue crab dropped out of a basket, I scurried to the safety of my office. There were questions I needed to ask myself. Smarty Jones did not give me what I wanted but maybe he gave me what I needed.

An Outrage to Owners

By Ray Paulick -- Regulations that keep a trainer from defrauding an owner are not important enough to be enforced...

Ominous Clouds

By Dan Liebman -- Fletcher was very polished in congratulating Smarty Jones' owners, trainer, and jockey. But his ears had to be ringing from Churchill CEO Tom Meeker's comment that, "The sun wasn't shining too bright in Kentucky today but I have a slight feeling it was shining in Pennsylvania."

Bonus Round

By Ray Paulick -- Smarty Jones' win in the Derby will feed the dreams of thousands who own or breed on a modest scale...

Philly Faithful

By Tom LaMarra -- "The Chapmans are people with great hearts, the kind of people that really make the business go. If we didn't have people like them, we wouldn't have a Derby."

Dust at the Downs

By Ray Paulick -- Rather than focus on inconveniences, Derbygoers should take a look at what will be the finished product...

Derby Doings

By Evan I. Hammonds -- This year, there is one absolute. For the first time since 1956, the Kentucky Derby will be run without the presence of Joe Hirsch.

Song Well Sung

By Ray Paulick -- Robert Sangster was not only forward-thinking, he was universal in his approach to the business...

Bonuses and Purses

By Dan Liebman -- If Smarty Jones wins the Kentucky Derby it will be a great story...but it should not be allowed to distort Smarty Jones' earnings as a racehorse or his sire's place on the list of 2004 leading sires.

Spring Blossoms

By Ray Paulick -- This year's Derby promises to be especially interesting because with all but a couple of the major preps in the books, there is no clear-cut favorite.

Read On

By Chip Tuttle -- "...any student of media could tell you the trend away from full-time Turf writers at major metropolitan dailies has more to do with lower circulation, loss of ad pages, and rising costs of newsprint than lack of interest in horse racing."

Gotcha

  • TOBA

By Ray Paulick -- In racing's ongoing drug war, the fiercest battles are being fought on the backstretch.

Public Perception

By Bob Summers -- The racing industry might learn something from what I overheard recently at an off-track betting parlor in Niagara Falls, N.Y.

Buyer Beware

By Ray Paulick -- The Jockey Club of England apparently is poised to clamp down on the fleecing of horse owners by banning agents and trainers found to be in serious violation of an industry code of ethics from the country's 59 racecourses.

The Gripes of Wrath

By Graeme Beaton -- It may be one of the eternal truths that emerges on judgment day--that the cost of horse ownership is really a tax on stupidity.

Busch League

By Ray Paulick -- Michael Busch wields a great deal of power in Maryland. The Democratic speaker of the House of Delegates is such a force that he could single-handedly kill a major industry, one valued at $10.6 billion that provides more than 20,000 jobs in his state.

Weighing In

By Larry Levin -- The recent running of the Strub Stakes (gr. II) followed a pre-race diversion into the arcane area of weight assignments. Toccet's connections protested their impost of 123 pounds, arguing that the allowance conditions of the race, properly interpreted, called for only 117. The conditions were so poorly worded that Toccet's owner had to appeal the decision of Santa Anita's officials to the stewards to resolve the matter in Toccet's favor.

Sugar and Spice

By Ray Paulick -- The victories by Tabasco Cat in the 1994 Preakness (gr. I) and Belmont Stakes (gr. I) were looked upon by the late William T. Young as his happiest moments in racing.

Knock of an Angel

By Amanda G. Simmons -- If the walls of her "sunflower" room could only talk...she was a stranger to no one, and an impeccable hostess to all; she was an elegant woman from old Virginia stock, but a modern woman who pursued her career in the Thoroughbred industry long before it was fashionable.

Muscle Tussle

By Ray Paulick -- How serious is the drug problem in contemporary sports? Serious enough that President Bush, a former partner in Major League Baseball's Texas Rangers, has called for a White House summit to examine the use of steroids among amateur and professional athletes participating in football, basketball, hockey, baseball, and track and field.

Here Comes Malicious

By Morton Cathro -- Racing fans shopping for that increasingly scarce commodity, the equine hero, are finding slim pickings these days as the shelf life of star Thoroughbreds continues to deteriorate at an alarming rate.

Industry Dilemma

By Ray Paulick -- Horse slaughter is the most emotional issue facing the Thoroughbred industry, and there is widespread support within the industry for proposed federal legislation to ban the slaughter of all horses for human consumption.

A Humane End

By Priscilla Clark -- Cries of outrage are still being heard wherever horse lovers express their views, and the terror and suffering Ferdinand undoubtedly endured in a slaughterhouse sparked profound soul searching throughout the racing community.

Raises For Roses

By Ray Paulick -- It's only mid-February, but it's never too early to start talking about the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and the Visa Triple Crown Challenge.

Colorful Commentary

By Frances J. Karon -- A colleague remembers Joss Collins as a man even more colorful than the multi-colored shirt that was his trademark.

Forever Young

By Ray Paulick -- William T. Young will be remembered for many things by many people. He was kind, honest, brilliant, tough, funny, engaging, modest, independent, loving, and loyal...

Remembering W.T. Young

By John Y. Brown Jr. -- An associate retorted when Abraham Lincoln died, "now he belongs to the ages--he was a man--take him for all in all, we shall not look upon his like again." I think this can be said of Bill Young...

High Priority

By Ray Paulick -- This year-end headline could not have gone unnoticed by anyone operating a racing stable--large or small--or by the leaders of organizations whose mission is to improve the economics of the Thoroughbred industry: 2003 Handle Up Slightly, But Purses Decrease.

Grand Opportunity

By Jim Squires -- Being both an incurable reformer and a glutton for punishment, it is hard not to be envious of the opportunity Gov. Ernie Fletcher has given his newly constituted Kentucky Horse Racing Authority.

Capital Idea

By Ray Paulick -- An organized visit to Frankfort on Feb. 3 is strongly urged to let the horse industry's voice be heard...

Looking Forward

By Tim Smith -- We'll remember 2003 for its highlights, but right now it's time to hazard some predictions for 2004...

Signaling Trouble

By Ray Paulick -- In an age of telephone and Internet betting and rebates the price of the signal must be re-examined.

Czeched in the Stretch

By Paul Deblinger -- When the Breeders' Cup announced a few years ago that it would become the World Thoroughbred Championships I thought, why would a successful brand change to an unwieldy new brand? Would there really be an effort to make it a true world championship?

Shoeless

By Ray Paulick -- Shoemaker served as a spiritual leader and confidant to a new generation of riders.

Failure Not An Option

By Scott Davis -- Remembering "Glenners" -- a writer of great skill and courage.

Full Plate

by Ray Paulick -- The story of TJ's Lucky Moon is a fairy tale -- and one for the little guys.

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