The Texas Thoroughbred Association Board of Directors on Tuesday named Rick Penn to fill the position on the board vacated by the resignation of Delwin Lovell. Penn will serve the remainder of Lovell’s term as Northeast Regional Director through December 2015. Penn was also named to the Membership and Marketing & Sponsorship Committees.

Penn, a resident of Parker, is the owner of Penn Solutions, a financial resources company in the real estate industry. A graduate of Eastfield College with a degree in management, Penn has been a TTA member for more than six years and runs a small breeding and racing operation.

When Retama Park kicks off its 19th season of live Thoroughbred racing tonight, fans will have new entertainment and dining options and a new later start time each night. Live racing runs every Friday and Saturday night starting at 7:15PM.

“We decided to move post time back by thirty minutes to give our fans a little more time to make it for the first race,” said Retama Park Director of Racing Operations Steve Ross.

Friday night’s opening card has 89 Thoroughbreds competing in nine races, including a $21,000 allowance optional claiming event at six furlongs on the main track. The field of six includes Accredited Texas-breds My Golden Belle and Platinum Song,

Saturday evening also has a nice $21,000 allowance optional claiming race with a field of 9 going a mile. The field includes Accredited Texas-breds Big Scrape, Halifax Flyer, Safe Range, Texas Air and Wild Slew.

Every Saturday in October the track is hosting an Oktoberfest party with craft beer, smoked bratwurst, sauerkraut and live German Polka music. The new beer garden concept is on the east side of the track level inside the grandstand.

For information and a stakes schedule, go to

Don’t forget that October 11 is the deadline to have a statistical page for your stallion in the 2014 Southern Racehorse Stallion Register. For more info about advertising, go to

You may also submit a free text listing by sending the stallion’s name, sire, dam, farm contact info and stud fee to

This winter, TTA members will elect candidates to fill five at-large director positions in addition to regional director positions for the North Central and West regions on the TTA Board of Directors.  Those elected will serve three-year terms beginning in 2014.

All TTA members will receive ballots for the at-large positions, while only members in the North Central and West regions will be eligible to vote in their respective regions.

The TTA Board of Directors met via conference call this week and approved a slate of candidates as recommended by the Nominating Committee.  In addition to incumbents Keith Asmussen of Laredo, Ken Carson of Pilot Point and Henry Witt of Waco, candidates in the at-large election include Mike Danapas of Tyler, Stan Huntsinger of Waco, Wesley Melcher of Sulphur Springs and Bill Tracy of Fredericksburg.

Phil Adams of Gainesville and Rory Rieger of Ft. Worth are candidates in the election to represent the North Central Region, with Kenny Sharp of Lubbock and Alfred Vardeman DVM of Colorado City vying to represent West Texas.

Ballots will mail to all current TTA members in early November, with an election deadline of December 16th.

Race Track Chaplaincy of America has announced that this year’s White Horse Award recipient is Dr. Michael Mason, DVM of Emerald Downs, Auburn, WA.

On the morning of June 27, 2013, the 78 year old veterinarian heard the call on his radio that a rider was thrown from his horse and that the horse was loose on the track. Being in close vicinity to the gap gate, he immediately noticed that it was not closed. At great risk for his own safety, Dr. Mason rushed to secure the gate before the horse could escape to the backside, being careful to still allow horsemen to exit to avoid potential injury by a loose horse.

The horse, however, plowed into the gap gate throwing Dr. Mason back and rendering him unconscious. He was evacuated to a trauma center where he remained in a coma for five days. After awakening from his coma, he spent nearly six weeks in the hospital undergoing rehabilitation.

Today, Dr. Mason is at home continuing his recovery and making plans to attend the White Horse Award Luncheon on October 31st, which will take place at the Derby Restaurant in Arcadia, California. He has no regrets and felt he did what was needed to save precious lives.

The White Horse Award, which was started in 2003, is given annually to a person in any facet of horse racing who is judged to have performed the most heroic act on behalf of human or horse.

: The Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale catalog is now available online with a collection of recent Grade 1 stakes-winning fillies among the 3,602 horses cataloged… The National Thoroughbred Racing Association’s Safety and Integrity Alliance announced that Kentucky Downs has been re-accredited… Tickets for the 139th running of the Preakness Stakes are now on sale; tickets can be purchased by calling the Preakness ticket office at (877) 206-8042 or by logging onto with seating information and ticket reservation forms available at….General admission tickets are now available for purchase for the 30th running of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Nov. 1 and 2 at Santa Anita Park  at…Subsequent to a final judgment by US District Court Judge Mary Lou Robinson ordering AQHA to immediately begin registering clones and their offspring, AQHA filed its Notice of Appeal which will begin the appellate process as the case heads to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans. ..The Texas Racing Commission will meet at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, October 8th… Our sympathies to the family of Jorge Ortega, who passed away earlier this week, and to the Asmussen family for whom he had worked for over thirty years.  A fund has been established by the Minnesota HBPA and Canterbury Park to assist the family.  Contributions can be made to Memorial Fund for Jorge Garcia Ortega through Voyager Bank, 500 Marschall Road, Shakopee, MN 55379.