A West Virginia court has ruled the state racing commission is prohibited from conducting hearings on racetrack exclusions because it "lacks the authority to unilaterally reinstate an ejected permit-holder over the objection of a racing association."
The Alabama Supreme Court has affirmed a circuit court ruling that vacated a 2006 election of board members of the Alabama Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association and ordered a new election.
No ruling was issued July 8 after a hearing in the ongoing exclusion case involving horsemen at Charles Town Races & Slots in West Virginia.
The growth of casino-style gaming at racetracks has brought with it executives with little or no experience in horse racing, something horsemen said makes them more vulnerable to exclusionary practices.
Joe Santanna has been elected to another three-year term as president and chairman of the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association.
The expansion of gaming at racetrack casinos doesn't always guarantee more money for purses and breed development programs, horsemen said July 2 during a sobering discussion that showed horse racing's challenge to stay relevant in a revenue-driven environment.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association said July 1 it plans to be more involved as the racing industry considers medication and drug-testing policies horsemen believe could be detrimental and counterproductive.
Backstretch programs, racetrack gaming, and exclusionary practices are the primary topics for forums scheduled for the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association summer convention June 30-July 3 in Shepherdstown, W.V.
The right of racetrack exclusion is being tested in West Virginia, where Charles Town Races & Slots is seeking to keep the state racing commission from holding hearings to consider granting three individuals reinstatement to the facility.
The president and two members of the Mountaineer Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association board of directors have been suspended in what some members are calling a "hostile takeover" of the organization.
Magna Entertainment Corp. chairman Frank Stronach is advocating a charter for "horsemen's rights" and said his company, the largest in North America in terms of racetrack holdings, would work with horsemen to accomplish it.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will discuss aftercare for racehorses, equine medication and drug-testing thresholds, and synthetic surfaces during its winter convention Jan. 30-Feb. 2 in Hollywood, Fla.
The Winners Federation, which advocates for healthy lifestyle choices by racetrack workers, plans to re-establish a professional development and informational conference in 2009.
A July 18 forum on equine welfare and safety gave participants a chance to offer a perspective not provided during a June congressional hearing at which the horseracing industry was slammed, horsemen said.
Betfair, the Great Britain-based online betting exchange, continues to negotiate with officials in the United States and is inching closer to a deal by which it would compensate horsemen for use of their product.
The Thoroughbred Horsemen's Group, which advocates a new economic model for pari-mutuel wagering and has been engaged in high-profile battles in the racing industry, isn't going away anytime soon, its president said July 18.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association is formulating a "strategic plan" for equine health and safety and will seek support from various industry organizations when the document is released, probably in early fall.
It began in 2006 with an anonymous flyer questioning the effectiveness of the Mountaineer Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, and snowballed into allegations, a protest, litigation, and paper trail that led some to question the validity of the association's most recent election.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will tackle equine health and welfare issues at a two-hour forum July 18 during its summer convention in Hershey, Pa.
The Maryland Racing Commission remains committed to regulating anabolic steroids in racehorses, but will delay implementation of a model rule given questions about the rule itself and laboratory testing procedures.
Horsemen's groups are rallying around a couple banned from Charles Town Races & Slots in West Virginia because of what the track owner terms integrity issues.
The New Mexico Horsemen's Association has been accepted as an affiliate of the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association.
A Pennsylvania regulator said progress is being made in attempts to educate legislators and make sure horse racing gets its due as gaming parlors continue to open around the state, but much remains to be done.
There may not be imminent decisions in the ongoing debate over high-volume betting shops and computer-assisted wagering. The industry remains split on mechanisms that have increased or shifted pari-mutuel handle, depending on the point of view.
The model rule regulating use of anabolic steroids in racehorses is flawed and not based on scientific evidence, and the current state-by-state roll out of the regulations is problematic, horsemen's representatives said Jan. 25.
As reports have surfaced that Birmingham Race Course in Alabama may again seek to install electronic bingo games, the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will take yet another look at the status of the Alabama HBPA, which continues to say a return of live Thoroughbred racing to Birmingham is possible.
Jokes aside, there could be progress on the pari-mutuel pricing front if comments by industry officials are any indication.
- By Tom LaMarra
- News, Northeast Region, Midwest Region, Southeast Region, Southwest Region, West Region
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association is formulating a position on regulation of anabolic steroids in racehorses.
The Claiming Crown will return to Canterbury Park Aug. 2, 2008, with new conditions designed to increase participation in the event.
Eight horsemen?s groups from around the United States have joined together to form a coalition designed to improve racing economics, specifically in the area of generating more purse revenue from interstate simulcasts.
The head of the National Horsemen?s Benevolent and Protective Association has suggested the horseracing industry create an entity to assist in the marketing and distribution of its product, in this case racing signals.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will address rebates, computer-assisted wagering, equine drug testing, immigration, and other issues during its winter convention scheduled for Jan. 24-28, 2008, in New Orleans.
Account wagering, one of the more pressing issues facing the pari-mutuel industry, will be front and center Aug. 19 during The Jockey Club Round Table Conference in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
Horsemen are calling for an end to the stalemate over account wagering; and even though providers say they want it to end as well, there doesn't appear to be a resolution in sight.
Horsemen and chemists believe drug positives aren't cut and dried, but regulators suggest the interests of the public, members of which may not understand the science of drug testing, must be protected.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will address distribution of racing content, equine drug testing, and health insurance during workshop discussions at its summer convention scheduled for July 19-22 in Williamsburg, Va.
Major horsemen's groups have banded together to ask racetracks and account wagering providers to make the Triple Crown races available to all wagering services in light of a conflict that is spreading ill will as horse racing's most prominent and lucrative day approaches.
The Alabama HBPA has a new lease on life after its 2006 election was deemed valid, but convincing dissidents to rejoin and enacting legislation to restore live racing in Birmingham remain serious challenges.
In what they said is an effort to promote unity, officials with the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association have rescinded a resolution that banned the Kentucky HBPA president from serving in an official capacity with the organization.
National Thoroughbred Racing Association president Alex Waldrop said the organization continues to be relevant, but industry stakeholders must commit to its long-term health.
Trainers Bob Holthus, Don Von Hemel, and Tim Ritchey were honored by the Arkansas Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association.
Research shows small amounts of stimulants and therapeutic drugs can be detected in stalls and other locations on the backstretch, and that has horsemen concerned given sensitive testing methods and regulations that don't make provisions for environmental contamination.
Horsemen's groups and other industry stakeholders must educate lawmakers on the importance of foreign workers to the racing industry and other agricultural businesses, panelists said during a Feb. 8 workshop.
Immigration, medication, and simulcast contracts are among the topics on the agenda for the National Horsemen Benevolent and Protective Association's winter convention.
Trainer Jami Poole, who lost the race for president of the Mountaineer Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association by only eight votes, has officially protested the organization's recent election.
Representatives of horsemen's groups criticized for not supporting the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund questioned jockeys' support for the fund and said pursuit of legislation that would amend the Interstate Horseracing Act has damaged relations between horsemen and jockeys.
The Claiming Crown, to be held for the first time at Ellis Park in western Kentucky, has been scheduled for Aug. 4, officials said.
Rick Hiles, who served two terms as president of the Kentucky Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association in the 1990s, has been voted president by the new board of the Kentucky HBPA.
The Indiana Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association is conducting a special election to fill the office of president and each of 10 board seats. The election comes in response to dissention among the membership after four elected officials were removed last November for allegedly violating the organization's bylaws.
Kentucky will host its first Claiming Crown in 2007 when the event moves to Ellis Park, the western Kentucky racetrack whose sale to businessman Ron Geary is expected to close in late September.
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