HRU Feedback (2018-05-13)

May 13, 2018

Excluded in Ohio?

My wife, a member of the Ohio Harness Horsemen’s Association (OHHA), has been breeding and racing horses in Ohio since 1998. We have spent money in Ohio for racing and breeding, the total amount I would rather not count. Recently, we had a situation at Miami Valley racetrack that should keep any out-of-state owners far away from breeding and buying in Ohio. We have a filly OHIO BRED, TRAINED AND RAISED entered for racing on April 30, 2018 but we did not get in. I was shocked since we last raced April 17, 2018 and I thought we would definitely have a preference date. Horses that raced last on 4/23/18 got in the race, our horse that last raced 4/17/18 did not. My trainer informed me that OHIO BRED AND OWNED had a preference regardless of when they last raced. When did that new rule start in the racing industry? Racing has always used the last date as a preference if horses have the same date the preference would go to the state bred or ownership in that particular state. It would virtually mean if you are a out-of-state owner of OHIO BRED HORSES you might never be able to race. She is a stake horse who needed a good mile as she came up sick her last start. Now since she did not get in Monday 4/30/18 it is now impossible and she will miss her first stake race due to this ridiculous interpretation of a condition. We paid the same fees as everyone else regardless of state of ownership.

We have been unfairly treated like any out-of-state owner will be. You talk about being discriminated against. This will teach all OWNERS AND BREEDERS a new lesson.

— John M Stonack / Allenwood, NJ

Enjoyed HRU videos

As an owner of a 2yo trotter, I have really enjoyed HRU’s excellent new series profiling the 2 yos in training in sunny Florida, as well as those up in frosty Canada.

Springtime is always an exciting time as the babies reveal whether they have the talent to make it to the races at two. But the excitement of May and June is preceded by the long winter months of routine training drills. So it was wonderful to have HRU’s “Twos in Training” series to break up the winter doldrums, and be able to see first hand how other training stables are faring with their yearling purchases and home breds.

Also, Ron Gurfein’s “Ask the Guru” column has been a lively read, and a good source of information about the training times and weekly progress of the well-bred babies that he observed from the famous deck at Sunshine Meadows.

Keep up the good work, and I hope that the “Twos in Training” series will be a returning feature in 2019.

— Charles Foster / Saratoga Springs, NY

RE: No Big M stakes

No stakes at Meadowlands? (full story)

On the surface, a radical idea.

Dig a little deeper and it makes sense.

With Meadowlands purses lower than those paid 40 years ago, field counts low and outfits fleeing New Jersey for slots-inflated purses in neighboring states, something has to give.

Opening to a crowd of over 40,000 on a warm September night, the Big M immediately made its presence known and rapidly became the premier track for standardbred racing. During the warmest months, Saturday night crowds often exceeded 20,000.

Those days are gone forever. Despite the handle, Meadowlands crowds are more like polite gatherings for high tea. Small and intimate.

And with the anorexic purses, horsemen are staying away.

Gural is on to something.

— Ken Young / Indian Trail, NC

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