Ray Paulick

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Big Yellow Taxi

By Ray Paulick -- To most people, it looked like a big, old school bus. But to Dave Mahan and his partners in Sackatoga Stable, along with the four dozen or so family and friends who accompanied them to the Kentucky Derby, it was a "yellow stretch limousine."

Not Running Through Hoops

By Ray Paulick -- Precisionist, one of this year's inductees into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, didn't start in the 1984 Kentucky Derby (gr. I).

One Head Better Than Two

By Ray Paulick -- As racing's fractured regulators hold their annual meetings 3,000 miles apart, the time has come for leadership to replace politics in the regulatory arena.

Playing Politics

By Ray Paulick -- Barring a last-minute miracle in the Maryland legislature, the horse industries in Maryland and Kentucky came up on the short end of the stick in their efforts to get legislation permitting slot machines at racetracks.

Family Ties

By Ray Paulick -- There wasn't a hotter trainer in the country than Larry Barrera for a brief time in the late spring of 1980. Larry, the son of Hall of Fame conditioner Laz Barrera, was just 20 years old when he saddled three stakes winners at Hollywood Park over a five-day period.

Signaling Change

By Ray Paulick -- It is difficult to review operations for the first five years of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association without wondering what might have transpired if the forerunner to the NTRA--the owner-driven National Thoroughbred Association--had gotten off the ground.

Cold Shoulder

By Ray Paulick -- Expenses from February's ice storm in Central Kentucky could easily exceed $9 million.

Not Worth the Weight

By Ray Paulick -- Joe DiMaggio's 56-game hitting streak wouldn't have happened if a racing secretary ruled baseball.

Bad Medicine

By Ray Paulick -- Progress continues in the areas of medication and drug-testing, and those involved in the process should not let a "lack of easy answers" stand in their way.

Lexington on Ice

By Ray Paulick -- The ice storm that socked Central Kentucky could not have come at a worse time for horse farms.

Statehouse Blues

By Ray Paulick -- The governors of New York and California may strike deals that will hurt the racing industry.

Quality Over Quantity

By Ray Paulick -- The NTRA needs to clearly define for voters what the awards are supposed to recognize and should take control of who votes for the awards, inviting a panel of 50 to 100 of the most qualified and unbiased people in racing to participate.

Bluegrass Blues

Kentucky's leadership role in breeding excellence may be slipping and too many of the state's legislators fail to understand the importance of the state's Thoroughbred industry, how it works, and who it represents.

The Forgotten Player

By Ray Paulick -- Organizations for breeders and owners have to be engaged in the efforts to bring slots to racetracks.

Can More Be Less?

By Ray Paulick -- Some track officials and horsemen have begun to question the wisdom of their relationships with offshore and U.S.-based wagering companies that attract some of the game's biggest players through rebates of 10% or more on wagers.

Chills and Thrills

By Ray Paulick -- The competitive races at Arlington Park warmed the chilly 46,118 on hand for the Breeders' Cup races Oct. 26.

Juvenile Jinx

By Ray Paulick
Has it really been 18 years since Chief's Crown came storming down the Hollywood Park stretch to defeat Tank's Prospect and Spend a Buck in the first Breeders' Cup race ever run?

This Lady is a Champ

By Ray Paulick -- If she adds the Breeders' Cup Distaff to her list of credentials, Azeri deserves consideration for Horse of the Year honors.

Nearly Flawless

By Ray Paulick -- Remembering a mare who is destined for the Hall of Fame and looking at how the horse industry has changed.

Sunday Silenced

By Ray Paulick -- Sunday Silence, who died in Japan Monday at age 16, saved Arthur Hancock's Stone Farm from bankruptcy in the late 1980s.

Sunday Silenced

By Ray Paulick -- Sunday Silence, who died in Japan Monday at age 16, saved Arthur Hancock's Stone Farm from bankruptcy in the late 1980s.

Stuck Market

By Ray Paulick -- What has happened to the top of the yearling market, the sector that outpaced all others during the boom years of the late 1990s and into the first year of the new millennium?

Life's A Beach

By Ray Paulick -- At Del Mar, promotions and activities such as concerts, "family fun club," trackside educational programs, handicapping seminars, and even a day-care facility in association with the local YMCA have helped the track increase business.

Rebate Debate

By Ray Paulick -- Rebate shops have been on the scene several years now, and it appears there has been limited success in slowing down their ability to recruit and retain some of horse racing's biggest gamblers.

Pendulum Swing

By Ray Paulick -- In a reversal of form, Fasig-Tipton Kentucky had the greatest momentum and Keeneland sustained a downturn during the 2002 summer yearling sales.

Global Influence

By Ray Paulick -- The late Howard Battle will be missed, not only at the many racetracks where he worked and by the many younger officials he mentored. His reach extended around the racing world.

Betting on Television

By Ray Paulick -- Personal experience confirms that people would rather bet on races they can watch on television.

A Shared Scandal

By Ray Paulick -- Major League Baseball is trying to come to grips with a growing drug scandal involving anabolic steroids that some people feel already has tarnished some of the sport's most sacred records. It's one scandal that, for now, racing has managed to avoid.

Alive and Kicking

By Ray Paulick -- The attendance, wagering, and television audience numbers posted for this year's Triple Crown series do not support the notion that this is a dying industry.

Triple Interest

By Ray Paulick -- While media interest in this year's Belmont Stakes is unprecedented, the year-round depth of quality of racing is epitomized by the likes of Kona Gold, Xtra Heat, and others.

Great Expectations

By Ray Paulick -- Racing fans from the baby boomer generation were spoiled by the remarkable careers of the three most recent Triple Crown winners, Secretariat (1973), Seattle Slew (1977), and Affirmed (1978). Maybe that's why the knockers are lining up to take their shots at War Emblem as he bids for the Triple Crown.

The Natural

By Ray Paulick -- Mike Pegram calls Bob Baffert "an artiste." Bob Lewis says he is "unbelievable." And Prince Ahmed Salman, whose colors have been carried to victory in four consecutive Triple Crown races by the Baffert-trained duo of Point Given and War Emblem, proclaims the conditioner a "genius."

Derby Potpourri

By Ray Paulick -- Giving credit to assistant trainers; changing the entry and graded stakes money rules; and a call to increase the Kentucky Derby purse.

Karma Classic

By Ray Paulick -- Handicapping 101 teaches things like pace, trips, and class, but does not cover what the late oddsmaker Jimmy "The Greek" Snyder used to refer to as the "intangibles." When it comes to handicapping the Kentucky Derby (gr. I), the intangibles sometimes seem just as important as the measurable factors.

24-Carat Crown

By Ray Paulick -- Three jewels in the Triple Crown? Not nearly enough, it says here. The series of classic races that ushers in springtime as much as the crack of the bat on opening day has far too much history, far too many heroes, to say there are only three jewels.

Fueling the Fire

By Ray Paulick -- For a change, let's all accept the winner of this year's Kentucky Derby as the best horse. Period.

Driving Us Crazy

By Ray Paulick -- Just as the automobile replaced the horse and buggy a century ago, the manufacture of automobiles has supplanted in importance the breeding and racing of Thoroughbreds in Kentucky, based on the recent actions of Gov. Paul Patton and state legislators.

Blood-Horse Editor Donates Book Fee to Charity

  • News

Ray Paulick, editor-in-chief of The Blood-Horse magazine and author of the recently released book Sunday Silence, has donated his entire compensation for writing the book to the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation and to Central Kentucky Riding for the Handicapped.

First Lady of the Turf

By Ray Paulick -- The late Queen Mother was the "First Lady of the Turf" and her love of horses may have helped her live to 101.

Program With a Purpose

By Ray Paulick -- The free ride is over. Now it is time to pay up to keep the Breeders' Cup Stakes Program on track.

Hitting the Target

By Ray Paulick -- Good news and bad news came out of consumer research made public during the National Thoroughbred Racing Association's fourth annual Marketing Summit recently.

MRLS Mess

By Ray Paulick -- As live foal reports from The Jockey Club confirm the full impact of last spring's Mare Reproductive Loss Syndrome, the breeding industry continues to be frustrated by uncertainty over the cause of the problem.

Miracle Man

By Ray Paulick -- I've never been to an old-fashioned tent ministry revival, but the crowd fervor was straight out of Elmer Gantry when Henryk de Kwiatkowski took the stage following his purchase of Calumet Farm at the March 26, 1992, bankruptcy auction.

Fifteen Minutes of Infamy

By Ray Paulick -- With racing broadcasts taking a backseat to other sports on ESPN, producers should be prepared for an altered time period.

Fleecing of America

By Ray Paulick -- Maybe the horse industry should borrow a page from the marketing program for the modest, but fast-growing the Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association.

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