The Jockeys' Guild wants the racing community to help build a $10 million endowment that will provide long-term support for its disabled jockeys program.
Dr. L. Wayne Gertmenian, chief executive for Guild manager Matrix Capital Associates, said the disabled jockey's program is nearly broke and desperately needs a reliable source of revenue. The disabled jockeys program currently provides aid to about 50 permanently disabled riders and between 100-200 temporarily disabled riders at any given time.
"This is the Guild's next serious problem," Gertmenian said. "We need about $10 million to get enough interest to subsidize current expenses, which is about $1 million."
The Guild formed the endowment during its annual meeting held Dec. 3 in Austin, Texas. The annual meeting, now called the Assembly, had been held in Las Vegas previously. The endowment was started with $250,000 from the Guild.
Gertmenian said he hopes the industry will support the fund because he believes everyone in the racing industry shares a responsibility for the long-term care of disabled riders. He said all donations to the endowment are tax-deductible.