In spite of the cold weather, over 80 TTA members and guests attended “TTA Night at the Races” at Retama Park on Saturday, December 7th, enjoying a wonderful buffet, entry for door prizes, and exciting racing, including divisions of the Texas Stallion Stakes for 2-year-olds.  Tom Durant’s homebred Forever Since was the winner of the Darby’s Daughter division for fillies while Time Iz Flyin, bred by Clarence Schaurbauer and owned by Danny Keene took the My Dandy division for colts and geldings.

Courtesy of doorprize sponsor M2 Technology, Pam Wright of Fredericksburg was the winner of a Lenovo Thinkpad, while Wayne Matthews took home a package of Spurs tickets.

Many thanks to Retama Park and M2 Technology, as well as all those who attended.

A similar event is being planned for February 15th at Sam Houston Race Park.

The 2014 Thoroughbred meet is rapidly approaching and the barn area at Sam Houston Race Park will open on Monday, December 16.  Eric Johnston, Sam Houston Race Park’s vice-president of racing, reports he has received a record number of stall applications for the upcoming live racing season.

Returning trainers include last year’s leading conditioner Danny Pish, Steve Asmussen, Karl Broberg, Cash Asmussen, Brent Davidson, Joe Offolter, Kari Craddock, Andy Konkoly, Francisco Bravo, Eleuterio Martinez Jr., Jack Bruner, Mindy Willis, Randy Mayfield, Charles Hukill and Jerenesto Torrez.

The Thoroughbred racing season at Sam Houston Race Park gets underway on Friday, January 17 with Texas Champions Weekend.  The stakes shine the spotlight on accredited Texas-breds with the “ladies” featured on Friday evening and the colts/geldings and $50,000 Star of Texas Stakes taking center stage on Saturday, January 18. The following weekend will feature the $400,000 Houston Ladies Classic.  The second running of the richest stakes in Texas will take place at Sam Houston Race Park on Saturday, January 25, 2014 as part of a prestigious evening which will include the Grade 3, $200,000 Connally Turf Cup.  For more information on racing, stakes and special events, visit

TRC Commissioners voted earlier this week to accept the Class 1 racetracks recommendations for allocation of purses as provided under Commission Rule 321.505(2) and distributions of funds in the Escrowed Purse Account among the various breeds of horses under Commission Rule 321.509. These splits maintain the status quo for another year.

Commissioners Ederer, Martin and Steen were appointed by Chairman Schmidt to an Advisory Committee on Pari-mutuel Wagering to undertake an extensive review of Texas wagering laws and rules as compared with other states and leave no stone unturned to make sure that everything possible is being done to help Texas be competitive with other states.

The next TRC meeting is scheduled for February 11th.

Texas A&M Equine Reproduction Course to Take Place Jan. 8-10
Horse owners and breeders wanting to learn more about efficiency methods in reproduction and management can attend a short course Jan. 8-10 at Texas A&M University in College Station.

The Equine Reproductive Management Short Course will include classroom sessions on anatomy and physiology of the mare and stallion, control of the estrous cycle, gestation and foaling, feeding the broodmare and young horse, and estrous cycle manipulation of mares.

“Course content includes a broad range of topics useful for horse owners in any segment of the breeding industry, with hands-on laboratory activities scheduled each day,” said Martha Vogelsang, PhD, senior lecturer for equine science in the department of animal science at Texas A&M. Each short course will have limited enrollment to ensure adequate time and animals to allow every participant to develop the skill they desire, Vogelsang said.

Enrollment will be confirmed on a first-come, first-served basis as registration forms with fee payment are received. In addition to the lectures and laboratory sessions, the registration fee includes a handbook of the lecture material, information from equipment and supply dealers or vendors, lunches and snacks, and a certificate of course completion.

Cost is $600 by Dec. 20 and $650 after. For more information, contact Vogelsang at 979/845-5796 or, or visit

Following are links to reports on topics from The University of Arizona Racetrack Industry Program Symposium on Racing and Gaming that concluded yesterday:

Full transcripts should be available by February 1st.

NOTES: In response to complaints that Kentucky-bred horses running in allowance optional claiming races are being encouraged to run out of state, a bill is expected to be filed in the next session of the General Assembly that would allow horses running in those races for a claiming price of $25,000 or more to be eligible for the extra money… Officials at the Maryland Jockey Club have announced that the purse for the 2014 GI Preakness S. will be increased from $1 million to $1.5 million, the first hike in the purse since 1998… A New Jersey Senate committee Dec. 9 approved legislation that would authorize historical race wagering, also known as Instant Racing, at the state’s racetracks, off-track wagering parlors, and casino race books…The Fasig-Tipton Midlantic December mixed sale posted across-the-board increases in gross, average, and median for the one-day auction held Dec. 9…The catalog for the 2014 Barretts January mixed sale is now online, with a book of 306 horses entered for the one-day auction on January 27th…Ballots in the TTA Board of Directors Election must be received by 5pm on Monday, December 16th and will be tabulated in the TTA office the next day… Starting this Friday at Retama is Customer Appreciation Month with $1 hot chocolate, soda, hot dogs, and live programs, plus only $1.50 for Ziegenbock draft beer…The Jockey Club reminds owners of unregistered yearlings and 2-year-olds that the requirements for foal registration must be completed by December 31, 2013, to avoid additional late registration fees.