The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association executive committee has accepted the resignations of president John Roark and vice president Tom Metzen Sr., both of whom have formed a company that hopes to facilitate international wagering for the benefit of horsemen.
John Roark, first elected as president of the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association in the summer of 2001, said he would seek his third two-year term as head of the organization.
Officials with the Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association have indicated the organization's fate as a member of the National HBPA could be decided during a Feb. 10 board of directors meeting.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association has officially put its weight behind a plan for an offshore hub that would accept wagers from foreign countries and funnel them to a common pool from which racetracks and horsemen would derive revenue.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association's Executive Committee will decide Feb. 3 whether to move forward with a plan to create an offshore wagering hub that would accept wagers from bettors outside the United States in an attempt to increase handle and generate revenue for purses.
The Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association has refused to permit signals from Ohio racetracks to go to Indian casinos in Oklahoma, a move one Ohio racetrack official has questioned.
In a statement released March 20 in response to an ongoing situation involving Tampa Bay Downs, National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association president John Roark said the relationship between horsemen and racetrack management must be based on "fairness, mutual respect, and a desire to work toward common goals."
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association's board of directors approved a combined NTRA/Breeders' Cup operating budget of $59.3 million for 2002 during a regularly scheduled meeting at Gulfstream Park in Florida on Thursday.
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