The NTRA Charities Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund announced Monday it has disbursed $56,121 to more than 50 former riders who are permanently disabled as a result of injuries sustained while riding at North American racetracks. The disbursement is the first from the Fund, which was established in April by a consortium of racetracks, Thoroughbred racing organizations and the Jockeys' Guild. The Fund aids permanently disabled jockeys with their health care and daily living expenses.Members of the consortium, including Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI), Magna Entertainment Corp., the New York Racing Association (NYRA), Sam Houston Race Park, Thoroughbred Racing Associations (TRA), the national Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (HBPA), the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA), the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) and the Jockeys' Guild, are collaborating to raise more than $1 million for the Fund."Members of the horse racing community responded quickly to assist our disabled jockeys, and we are thankful for their support," said John Velazquez, chairman of the Jockeys' Guild.The NTRA Charities – Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund is intended to provide interim supplements for former riders while the industry develops long-term solutions to meet the needs of its disabled riders. Pledges and contributions to the Fund now total more than $250,000.A board consisting of Don Amos (Magna Entertainment Corp.), Bob Bork (Sam Houston Race Park/TRA), Jon Court (Jockeys' Guild), Drew Couto (Thoroughbred Owners of California), Jack Fires (Jockeys' Guild Disabled Jockeys' Committee), Alan Foreman (Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association), Peggy Hendershot (NTRA Charities), Nancy LaSala (Jockeys' Guild Disabled Jockeys' Committee), Joe Santanna (National HBPA) and Steve Sexton (CDI), oversees the Fund and approves disbursements.
Individuals who wish to contribute to the fundraising effort for disabled jockeys may do so by sending checks payable to: NTRA Charities – Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund, c/o NTRA, 2525 Harrodsburg Road, Suite 500, Lexington, KY 40504. Contributions to the NTRA Charities – Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund are tax-deductible. NTRA Charities is a 501 (c)(3) public charity. For more information about the fund contact Peggy Hendershot at the NTRA, (800) 792-6872.