News and Notes for August 2, 2013


Lasting Bubbles, a 5-year-old Accredited Texas-bred mare by Pulling Punches out of Slim’s Secret who races for TTA members Martin and Judy Peek, may take a shot at graded company next week in the $100,000 Gardenia at Ellis Park.

Trained for his parents by Kevin Peek, Lasting Bubbles was a 7 1/4-length winner of the $50,000 Valor Farm for Texas-bred fillies and mares at Lone Star Park in her last start July 6, earning a Beyer Speed Figure of 96. She also earned the Beyer for an optional $25,000 claiming win at Oaklawn in February, and for her five-length romp in the $50,000 JEH Stallion Station Stakes at Lone Star in April. Her record now stands at 14-5-5-0 with earnings of $155,402.

An interesting side note is that Martin Peek purchased Slim’s Secret for about $500 from an owner looking to downsize his stable. Sounds like he made a good investment.

Hey folks – have you made plans to attend the Fasig-Tipton Texas Summer Yearling Sale on August 26th? Take a look at the catalog, and don’t miss out!

With 129 head cataloged, there are 58 Texas foals; most are already Accredited and the others are eligible to be Accredited. Many have already been nominated to the Texas Stallion Stakes Series, and every horse that passes through the ring at this sale is eligible to be nominated to the TTA Sales Futurity.

Racing Commissioners International (RCI) voted to create a penalty point system and “enhanced” suspensions for trainers with multiple medication violations, strengthening how racing regulators deal with repeat offenders.

The RCI Board also voted to require a 10-year suspension and a $100,000 fine for those found guilty of the administration of blood doping agents like EPO.

Under the point system, to be launched in 2014, violations of the medication rule for substances not included on the RCI Schedule of Controlled Therapeutic Substances would earn 1 to 6 points, depending on its official classification as determined by the potential to affect performance.    Overages involving the 24 therapeutic medications included on the RCI schedule would earn half as many points, depending on classification.

Depending on the number of points amassed by a repeat offender, the enhanced penalty would be in the form of additional suspension days of between 30 and 360, which would be added to the underlying penalty.

Although regulatory violations will remain part of a licensee’s permanent record, points will be expunged after a period of time based upon the category of punishment deemed appropriate given the substance classification.

All racing regulatory entities will expected to submit ruling violation data through a central portal into the RCI database which will track points and their expiration.

A July 30 ruling against the prohibition of cloned horses in the American Quarter Horse Association’s registry could have a far-reaching effect into the breed’s racing industry.

A jury in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas ruled in favor of Jason Abraham and Gregg Veneklasen in their suit against the AQHA alleging violation of anti-trust laws, based on the organization’s denial of registration for at least eight cloned horses belonging to Abraham.

The breed organization’s handbook specifically prohibits horses “produced by any cloning process” from participating in AQHA events, including racing.

Johne Dobbs, president of the AQHA’s Executive Committee, said the organization’s next move is to appeal the ruling to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, in New Orleans.

Houston billionaire Tilman Fertitta will build an iconic Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Lake Charles, according to KHOU 11 News reporting from this week. The property will cost an estimated $600 million and will be located near the L’Auberge casino owned by Pinnacle Entertainment (about two hours from Houston). The casino should be extremely lucrative because of its close proximity to Texas.  Fertitta reportedly would love to build a Las Vegas-style casino in Texas, but cannot under current law.

HRTV’s popular weekly “Fasig-Tipton Pursuit of the Cup, Presented by” show, which chronicles the latest happenings leading up to the 30th annual Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships on November 1 and 2 at Santa Anita, debuted on August 1st.

The show will air in half-hour segments through August. Scott Hazelton will host a number of Thursday editions of POTC, and share the host’s chair with Lafitte Pincay when the show expands to a one-hour format on Sunday, September 1.

Notes: The Downs Racetrack & Casino will host a grand opening on Aug. 2 to recognize its new, state-of-the-art gaming facility and the launch of the 2013 live horse racing season in Albuquerque… New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed into law a measure sharply increasing the number of Las Vegas-style casinos permitted in the state, if voters agree to go along with the idea in a statewide referendum this fall… Churchill Downs Racetrack (“CDRT”) is planning the Grandstand Terrace, a venue that will offer nearly 2,400 new seats on the second and third floors and significantly expand and update restrooms, wagering windows and food and beverage offerings available to Grandstand patrons. The Grandstand Terrace project also features the addition of the Rooftop Garden, a hospitality lounge area for VIP guests… Check out the latest issue of Southern Racehorse for a great article on summer pasture management…Here’s a nice profile from The Blood-Horse on Texas-bred Sandburr, who is now enjoying his retirement near Dallas:… Remember, the TTA will soon be moving to our new location at 4009 Bannister Lane, Ste 230, Austin, TX 78704, where our phone and fax numbers will remain the same, but we will no longer have a post office box…Our condolences to the family of well-known horseman Joe Kirk Fulton, who passed away last night.