News and Notes for March 27, 2015


TOBA’s Thoroughbred Ownership Seminar gets underway at 8:00 a.m. on Sunday, March 29 at Lone Star Park.  Attendees will meet with racehorse industry professionals to learn about owner/trainer dynamics, equine conformation, how to acquire a Thoroughbred, business topics, the public auction process and Thoroughbred retirement options.

Also on Sunday, the Under-Tack Show for the Fasig-Tipton Texas Two-Year-Olds In Training & Horses of Racing Age Sale begins at 11 a.m.

The TTA board of directors will meet at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, March 30.

On Tuesday, March 31 the sale will begin at 12 p.m. CT with the 2-year-olds, followed by the horses of racing age section.  Catalog updates are available at:

  1. Reid McLellan, PhD., national equine educator, will be conducting the 15th Lone Star Park Trainers’ Exam Prep Class on April 1 – 3 in the chaplain’s classroom at the Racing Office at Lone Star Park. This intensive 20-hour program focuses on material covered on the National Trainers’ Exam Barn and Written exams. The emphasis is on Texas Rules of Racing and comparison of rules from other states represented.

The Trainers’ Exam Prep Class is designed to provide information about the Rules of Racing to individuals considering taking a state licensing exam, as well as for owners or horseplayers that simply want to know more about the Rules of Racing as they pertain to the training and racing of racehorses.

For more information and to register, go to or call Dr. McLellan at (859) 321-4377.

On April 10th, Remember Me Rescue will hold their third annual Celebrity Fundraiser and Gala benefiting retired racehorses for their rehabilitation and retraining.  The Gala will feature a buffet and open bar along with live and silent auction items.  Hall of Fame Trainer Jack Van Berg will act as auctioneer and jockey Rosie Napravnik will give the keynote address.  For more information, go to

The 2015 Battle of the X’s Trainer’s Challenge and All Breed Horse Show was held March 21 and 22 in Fort Worth. Hosted by Remember Me Rescue of Burleson Texas, the Trainer’s Challenge affords the opportunity for off-the-track Thoroughbreds (OTTBs) to be paired with trainers from across the country to compete for $10,000 in prize money.

In the months leading up to the challenge, all competitors are spotlighted and adoption applications are accepted for the right to bid on the contestants at the conclusion of the challenge. Proceeds benefit Remember Me Rescue, as well as Thoroughbred Athletes, for their own entry. This year’s challenge had eight horses and trainers competing for top honors.

At the conclusion of the competition, the 2015 champion was Oklahoma-bred Miss Zanjero (Zanjero – Astonishment by Golden Missile), a 2010 filly entered by Thoroughbred Athletes Inc. of Guthrie, Oklahoma and trained by Wendy Thompson of Piedmont, OK. This team was also Overall Highpoint Winner at the Battle of the X’s All Breed Horse Show.

Following the Battle of the X’s Trainer’s Challenge, Miss Zanjero was offered at auction to approved adopters and was purchased by Lisa Hunt of Edmond, OK, who plans on continuing the horse’s show career by participating in the second leg of the Red River Shootout and 2015 Sport of Kings Challenge, held June 19-21 at Remington Park. The Sport of Kings is an annual event highlighting the Thoroughbred horse and benefitting Thoroughbred Athletes.

Miss Zanjero demonstrated her versatility and talent to the five judge panel when she entered the show ring pulling a cart. After making a few laps, she was saddled and proceeded to demonstrate her jumping skills, highlighting her ability by jumping gymnastics; skinny jumps, walls, etc.

There were seven other talented Thoroughbreds in the competition, including Reserve Champion Master Tone, Devil’s Apprentice, Texas-bred Son of Amour, Texas Citizen, Texas-bred Jonesicula, Texas-bred Angleterre and Sweetwhiskeybrown.

The TTA’s Paddock Foundation is a proud supporter of Remember Me Rescue and the Battle of the X’s, and TTA Executive Director Mary Ruyle participated on the team of judges for this year’s competition.

Remember Me Rescue was formed by Dallas and Donna Keen to assist retired and injured racehorses after their careers at the track are over. The program accepts, rehabilitates, and retrains ex-racehorses with the hopes of finding them new homes with responsible owners.

Photos of the event can be viewed and purchased at and more information can be found at

The board of directors of the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC) has announced that a uniform threshold for cobalt regulation in the United States was approved at its regularly scheduled meeting held on March 24.

The cobalt threshold, which was developed and unanimously recommended by the RMTC’s Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC), will be submitted to the Association of Racing Commissioners International (RCI) for consideration as a model rule at RCI’s April meeting. Technical assistance will be provided by the RMTC to individual jurisdictions seeking to adopt cobalt regulations.

“This proposal is designed to protect the health and welfare of the race horse,” explained Dr. Rick Arthur, RMTC Secretary and California’s equine medical director. “The recommended thresholds provide generous allowances for vitamin and mineral supplementation but make the administration of cobalt salts impractical.”

The RMTC board also addressed the use of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) – an endogenous substance that has also been inappropriately administered on race-day as a performance enhancer under the name Carolina Gold.

Based upon the final results of a study and industry-sponsored analysis of more than 400 post-race samples, the RMTC board expects to finalize a recommendation concerning a normally occurring threshold for GABA in the next two weeks. The RMTC will then submit the recommended threshold for GABA to the RCI for consideration at its April meeting.

The complete article is available at:

NOTES: Purses at Oaklawn Park will be raised between $1,000 and $2,000 each race for the remaining 10 days of the 2015 meet. This increase, which starts with the Saturday, March 28 card, marks the third time that purses have been raised since the beginning of the meet Jan. 15… In April Kentucky Downs plans to change its current historical racing machines, currently the Cella family’s Instant Racing games, to a new player in the market called Encore Gaming. In a February release, Encore chief executive officer Ray Reid said the Florida-based company plans “to provide the racing industry with a cutting-edge product that appeals to both electronic game players and handicappers, attracts new customers, and finally allows historical horse racing to fulfill its enormous potential.” Kentucky Downs also was approved to increase the number of historical racing machines from 390 to 500 when Encore installs the machines in April… The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission voted 8-4 on Monday to allow tracks to write race conditions that bar horses from receiving furosemide within 24 hours of post time… Efforts to expand video lottery terminal casinos in New York, including one at Belmont Park, have been quashed during state budget negotiations at the state Capitol…Best of racing luck to Bill Casner and partners, whose 3-year-olt colt My Johnny Be Good, will compete this weekend in the $2 million UAE Derby … The next meeting of the Texas Racing Commission is tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, April 14, 2015.