TOBA's Christina Bossinakis told conference attendees "If (owners) have a good time, they bring in friends."

TOBA's Christina Bossinakis told conference attendees "If (owners) have a good time, they bring in friends."

Anne M. Eberhardt

Conference: Leverage Existing Owners

Advice offered during conference Jan. 12

Catering to current owners is important for attracting others to the Thoroughbred business; keeping them involved requires development of realistic goals and business plans. Those were a few of the takeaways from the Thoroughbred Owners Conference's first session Jan. 12 at Gulfstream Park.

"You will get new owners by taking care of existing owners," said Christina Bossinakis, who oversees the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association Owners' Concierge program launched in 2015. "If (owners) have a good time, they bring in friends. Taking care of them is of paramount importance."

Eric Hamelback, chief executive officer of the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, said the biggest mistake owners can make is having "unrealistic expectations." Maggi Moss, who has been very successful claiming racehorses, said she realized she needed to educate herself and be more involved in the operation: "My biggest mistake was not taking control of my horses."

"Do your homework," said Robb Levinsky, founder of Kenwood Racing. "Some business people who come into horse racing leave their common sense at the door. You can succeed financially but you need to be very disciplined."