Jockeys' Guild Assembly in Arizona Dec. 7-8

Agenda includes address by Arlington Park president Roy Arnold.

The Jockeys’ Guild will conduct its annual Assembly Dec. 7-8 at the Westin La Paloma Resort in Tucson, Arizona.

The meeting is being held in conjunction with the University of Arizona’s 2009 Symposium on Racing and Gaming.

According to a release from the Guild outlining the agenda, the assembly begins Dec. 7 with a closed session that will be followed by a conference open to all symposium attendees from 1-3 p.m.

Among the speakers scheduled for the open session are Nick Nicholson, president and CEO of Keeneland; John Unick, president of the Thoroughbred Racing Division of Maroevich, O’Shea & Coghlan Insurance Services; Larry Eliason, chairman of the Association of Racing Commissioners International Model Rules and Practices Committee and the executive secretary of the South Dakota Commission on Gaming, and John Engelhardt, president of the Turf Publicists of America who will be discussing jockey trading cards.

A panel discussion titled "Giving a Leg Up to the Industry" at 9:30 a.m. begins the Dec. 8 program. Moderated by Corey Johnsen, president of Kentucky Downs, and including veteran riders Robby Albarado, G.R. Carter and John Velazquez, the group will discuss what jockeys can do to help promote the sport, according to the Guild release.

The panel discussion will be followed by Nancy LaSala, executive director of the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund and special guest Matthew Straight discussing the efforts of the PDJF and the Disabled Jockey’s Endowment. The Dec. 8 morning session concludes an address from Roy Arnold, president of the Thoroughbred Racing Association and Arlington Park.

The Dec. 8 afternoon program begins at 2 p.m. with Mike Ziegler, executive director of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association's Safety & Integrity Alliance, and the assembly concludes with panel discussion titled "Horsemen and Jockeys – Weighing In" moderated by Dan Fick, executive vice president and executive director of The Jockey Club. During the panel discussion, representatives of the horsemen, the Jockeys’ Guild and journeymen riders will discuss issues of interest to all parties, including the current scale of weights, what is and is not included in this weight, how to effectively communicate actual weight to the betting public, mount fees and new regulations on equipment and its uses, according to the Guild release.