Breeders' Cup Exec Thayer Plans Run for Office

Damon Thayer, vice president of Breeders' Cup and event marketing for the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, has filed a letter of intent with the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance as a "future year candidate" for Kentucky Senate District 17.

The new district, which includes Scott, Grant, Owen, and southern Kenton counties, will be on the ballot in 2004. Because of the the recent redistricting plan passed by the General Assembly, the seat might be vacated by incumbent Sen. Daniel Mongiardo sometime after the 2002 election. If so, a special election would be held for completion of that term.

"Public service is a life-long dream of mine, and I pledge to serve the citizens of this district as best I can," said Thayer, a Republican. "I am a proud conservative with rural values, and I think my views mesh well with the views of the people in my district."

Thayer, 34, lives in Scott County with his wife, Carrie; son Daniel, 5; and daughter Katie, 1. He lived in Grant County from 1993-2000, during which time he served as director of communications for Turfway Park.

Thayer was elected vice chairman of the Republican Party of Kentucky in 1999. He was President Bush's Scott County campaign chairman in 2000.

Thayer indicated that if he won the seat, it wouldn't impact his job with the NTRA/Breeders' Cup organization. Kentucky's legislature is a part-time "citizen legislature."

Earlier this year, the Kentucky legislature considered alternative gaming at racetracks. The measure cleared a House committee but never made it to the floor of the House or Senate. Racetracks continue to push for electronic gaming devices, and the issue could come again at a future legislative session.