News and Notes for September 12, 2014


Thursday’s hearing in 48th District Court was the latest development in the ongoing effort to allow historical racing at Texas tracks.

On August 29th, the Texas Racing Commission, in a 7-1 vote, approved a rule change to allow historical racing.

State Representative Matt Krause (R-Fort Worth) filed a lawsuit to prevent the rule change from going into effect.  Krause testified in district court Thursday that “The Texas Racing Commission had no right to pass rules last month allowing the controversial practice of historical racing at dog and horse racetracks statewide.”

Ted Ross, an assistant attorney general for Texas, argued that Krause’s case doesn’t hold water. “We believe this case must be dismissed,” he said. Ross also argued that Krause has no cause of action, but acknowledging that he does have the right to file a rule challenge lawsuit after the rule change goes into effect.

Other attorneys were in court, arguing that their clients — Sam Houston Race Park and the Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie — should be allowed to intervene in the lawsuit.

Ralph Duggins, a Fort Worth attorney representing Lone Star Park, also argued that he wasn’t sure Krause had the proper standing to challenge the commission’s ruling.

Those who do have standing, he said, would be those most impacted by historical racing, such as bingo parlors, greyhound groups and Indian tribes in Texas with casinos.

A ruling in the case is expected early next week.

Krause earlier sought a temporary restraining order to prevent the commission from voting on the plan, but Judge Evans last month rejected that request when he learned the new rule wouldn’t go into effect until 20 days after being published in the Texas Register.

That change has been submitted for publication and is scheduled to go into effect on September 28th.

Several issues are involved in Krause’s lawsuit, with the biggest being whether the judge will approve an injunction to prevent the commission from implementing the rule.

If Evans issues an injunction, the effort to bring historical racing to Texas likely is stalled. If he doesn’t, the measure is expected to move forward barring any future legal action.

Texas tracks interested in providing the gaming machines for gamblers must submit a proposal to the Racing Commission, which will review each request, and each proposed game, on a case-by-case basis, said Robert Elrod, a spokesman for the commission.

The next Racing Commission meeting is tentatively set for October 14th in Austin.

To view a video demonstrating historical racing terminals, go to:

The Fasig-Tipton Texas Yearling and Fall Mixed Sale catalog is now online, ringing in a new format for the southwest auction.

The auction, previously held in August, will be held on October 13th in the Texas Thoroughbred Sales Pavilion at Lone Star Park.

“We are closing in on 190 entries,” said Fasig-Tipton Texas director Tim Boyce. “We will have around 130 yearlings, with the balance primarily made up with broodmares and weanlings.  Over the last week or so, we have also been working on a supplemental catalog of horses of racing age.”

The catalog is now available via the Fasig-Tipton website, and print copies will be available from all Fasig-Tipton offices from September 18th.

“Our consignors have put together a quality catalogue that has already generated many inquiries,” Boyce said. “Between our date change, the positive landscape for Texas racing, and interest in the sale from all around the region, we are looking forward to a big day.”

Since the sale is taking place during the Quarter Horse meet at Lone Star Park, all licensed buyers are encouraged to bring their racing license, and all unlicensed buyers are asked to view horses from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 12th and from 8:00 a.m. to the end of the sale on Monday, October 13th.

Accredited Texas-bred awards for summer racing at Gillespie County Fair Grounds are scheduled to mail on Monday, September 15th. Award amounts are based on the amount of ATB award monies available for the pay period divided by the purse money earned by Accredited Texas-breds finishing first, second or third in any race at this track.

Based on this formula, award totals were calculated as follows:

Breeder Awards:        7.08822% of 1st/2nd/3rd purse money earned

Owner Awards:          12.43783% of 1st/2nd/3rd purse money earned

Stallion Awards:         4.13971% of 1st/2nd/3rd purse money earned

The total amount of awards paid out for this period of racing at Gillespie County Fair Grounds is $10,382.46.  By law, 40% ($4,152.99) is paid for Breeders Awards, 40% ($4,152.99) is paid for Owners Awards and 20% ($2,076.48) for Stallion Owner Awards.

Also, for horses placing first, second or third in an open company race during this meet, there is an Owner’s Bonus award totaling 15.07987% of purse money earned.  The first 25% of total ATB Awards for 2014 is allocated to the Owner Bonus Fund, which equates to $3,460.83 for this meet.

NOTES: The 2014 LOPE Benefit Horse Show is scheduled for September 20th at Scissortail Equestrian Center, with pre-registration closing on September 13th; see for details…The Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame Gala and Auction will be October 18th in the Showplace Pavilion at Retama Park; for reservations or to sponsor a table, call Ryan Grammer at 210-651-7045 or email…Congrats to Jerimiah W. West who was named leading owner during the 8-day mixed meet at the Gillespie County Fair Grounds, to Jimmy Guerra Jr. and Roberto G. Madrigal who tied for leading trainer honors with five wins apiece, and leading jockey Damian Martinez…Head out to Retama Park for live Thoroughbred racing this weekend, with 6:45 post times on Friday and Saturday.