NTRA THOROUGHBRED NOTEBOOK
|News and notes from around the Thoroughbred racing world, compiled
by NTRA Communications, (212) 907-9280.
HORSE OF YEAR TIZNOW TO RETURN SATURDAY IN THE STRUB
Annointed 2000 Horse of the Year just last Tuesday night at Thoroughbred Racing's Eclipse Awards in New Orleans, Tiznow will return to the races and break from the outside gate as the favorite in the Grade II, $500,000 Strub Stakes for four-year-olds at Santa Anita Park. The Strub Stakes, which drew a field of six, will be televised live (approximate post time 6:47 p.m. ET) on ESPN2 as part of the 2001 debut of the "NTRA 2Day at the Races" series airing Saturday from 6:30-7:00 p.m. (ET). Also on the program will be taped coverage of Saturday's Donn Handicap from Gulfstream Park and the San Vicente Stakes, run earlier on the Saturday Santa Anita card.
The complete Strub Stakes field from the rail out is: Jimmy Z (jockey: Laffit Pincay, Jr.), Nurdlinger (Tyler Baze), Wooden Phone (Corey Nakatani), Capo Di Capo (Victor Espinoza), Tribunal (Gary Stevens), and Tiznow (Chris McCarron).
TORRES TO HEAD RTCA
Living up to its new fund raising slogan, "A New Day for RTCA," the Race Track Chaplaincy of America hired its first executive director in over a decade, Dr. Enrique Torres. An adjunct professor at the prestigious Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, Calif., The New York Evangelical Seminary in New York City and the Andover Newton Theological School in Newton, Mass., Torres worked as an RTCA Associate Field Director last summer, visiting Chaplains, backstretch workers and track executives at 10 different tracks.
"I genuinely felt the call when I walked the backstretch and saw the need," said Dr.Torres. "I never dreamed the Lord would call me to this position. But when I saw the holistic ministry that was being performed at the tracks, it touched my heart and I realized it would take a team effort to fill the needs. My commitment is to do all that I can."
Founded in 1971 to provide for the spiritual, emotional and material needs of track workers, the RTCA also announced a campaign to raise $1 million. Don Price, the campaign's director and a past Executive Secretary for the Virginia Racing Commission, said the money is needed to fund a permanent office and pay a full time professional staff, something the organization has never had. This, Price said, will increase the number of chaplains and improve their education. It will also standardize and increase track social service programs such as English As a Second Language, GEDs and immigration compliance education.
Hall of Fame Jockey Pat Day, the RTCA's spokesperson, said he believed a permanent office and staff headed by Torres will have a "snowball effect," increasing Chaplains and services to workers. "We have to have a competent executive director if we are going to move forward and have the impact the racing industry needs and the people working in it deserve. I'm convinced he's the man who will take the Chaplaincy to the next level."
TRF TO RECEIVE $5 MILLION FROM MELLON ESTATE
The estate of the late Paul Mellon has announced a $5 million endowment gift to the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, the nation's leading thoroughbred retirement and rescue organization. Mellon was one of the most distinguished and admired horsemen in Thoroughbred racing history.
"The endowment will be a significant help in meeting our present operating expenses for seven large farms and the feeding of more than 350 Thoroughbreds," said John Stuart, TRF president. "It will also provide a base that allows us to continue confidently to expand our horse rescue programs. We can only regard this as an important testimonial from one of racing's giants, and we are profoundly grateful for this generous gift."
A pioneer in horse rescue programs, the TRF remains the largest organization of its kind in the nation, providing lifetime homes for former racehorses at TRF-operated and satellite farms in Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, Virginia, and Wisconsin, and through private adoptions. Major farms include facilities at Wallkill Correctional Facility in Wallkill, N.Y., Blackburn Correctional Complex in Lexington, Ky., and now, Marion County Correctional Institution in Ocala, Fla., where inmates learn vocational and life skills through their care of the horses, and at the Charles Hickey School in Baltimore, Md., where at-risk juveniles benefit from a similar program. At the Exceller Farm in Poughquag, N.Y., racehorses are rehabilitated and retrained for private adoption.
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