NTRA to Focus on Legislation, Public Relations

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association will place more emphasis on federal legislative activities and public relations, the board of directors announced after a Dec. 13 meeting in Palm Beach, Fla.

In other business, the NTRA projects net revenue of $2.66 million because of stronger-than-anticipated sponsorship and group purchasing results and cost savings from staffing reductions earlier this year, according to notes released after the meeting. Membership commitments are expected to produce dues of nearly $8.5 million, the NTRA said.

NTRA officials said no decisions were made regarding the executive structure of the organization. Greg Avioli currently serves as interim Breeders' Cup president and NTRA chief executive officer, but there has been ongoing talk of having one chief executive for each organization.

"(The board) did have an executive session after the meeting, but to my knowledge no decisions have been made in terms of (succession planning)," said Keith Chamblin, NTRA vice president of communications.

Much of the meeting focused on strategic planning. Chamblin said there was no discussion of the 2007 budget.

Membership-wise, he said the NTRA would have its "broadest-based membership in history" next year, given changes in the dues structure. For example, individual HBPA affiliates can now become members under their National HBPA umbrella organization.