UPDATE - FORT ERIE ISSUES NOTICES TO EMPLOYEES
THE BEGINNING, OF THE END?
Press ReleaseNordic Gaming Corporation, the owner and operator of Fort Erie Race Track, held a meeting today with its employees who work on the horse racing side of their business.
The purpose of the meeting was to inform those employees that it appears that the Fort Erie Race Track will not be able to continue live racing in 2009. While Nordic will pursue every effort to try and find a way to continue racing in 2009, there are regulatory requirements that the Company must comply with, thus these employees were advised that their employment was being terminated effective March 31, 2009. This notice immediately impacts approximately 190 employees.
This decision has been a difficult one for the company; one which Nordic has delayed for several years. As most people are aware, the company has spent the last two years focusing on efforts to “Save the Track”. Over that time every effort has been expended to find a solution to keep the track operating. Nordic has, and continues to work, with all of the stakeholders, including the various Unions and their members. However, the company is unable to continue to absorb the substantial operating losses year after year, and hence the reason for the decision to begin preparing for closure.
The company will be working with its employees and their union representatives to keep them informed of all significant information in the coming weeks and months. In that regard Nordic will comply with it’s obligations under their collective agreements as well as with the Employment Standards Act.
Nordic has also notified The H.B.P.A. OF ONTARIO and The Ontario Racing Commission of this pending action by virtue of their application for race dates to the Ontario Racing Commission, as well as in meetings and conversations with both organizations. Both these bodies have already taken action with respect to this issue, and they both have communicated those actions through public communications.
PEPPERS PRIDE 19 for 19... and runs 98 Beyer Figure
PEPPERS PRIDE ran the race of her life yesterday, a 98 Beyer Figure and career best, to win the New Mexico Racing Commission Stakes at Sunland Park to go 19 for 19 in her career.
Here's an excerpt from a story on the El Paso Times...
Running for Pride: Victory may mark end of amazing run
Matt Johnson / El Paso Times
SUNLAND PARK -- Things are always the same when Peppers Pride takes to the soil at Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino -- or any New Mexico track, for that matter.
Always the same trainer, the same jockey, the same owner, the same groom, the same pony horse. The routine always is the same, and the result always is the same -- victory.
The New Mexico-bred mare put on what may be the final show of her career Sunday at Sunland Park, blazing her way to a 5ç-length victory in the New Mexico Racing Commission Handicap, giving her a 19th consecutive victory and allowing her to join Rocky Gulch as the only two New Mexico thoroughbreds to surpass $1,000,000 in career earnings.
Racing as the 4-5 favorite, Peppers Pride made up more than 5 lengths on front-running Negotiablafections on Sunday, then scorched the competition in the stretch, covering the six furlongs in 1:09.54.
"We had a great trip. She exploded late when I asked her," said jockey Carlos Madeira, who has been aboard Peppers Pride for all 19 trips. "She gave me everything I could ever want."
Peppers Pride paid $3.80 on a $2 win ticket -- the biggest reward for a victory by the bay mare in more than a year.
Peppers Pride's breeder/owner, Joe Allen of Abilene, breathed relief after Sunday's triumph. "There's no better way to sum it up -- relief," Allen said
read the rest
YOU SAID IT, JERRY
excerpt from The Day at the Races
New York Daily News
BY JERRY BOSSERT
DAILY NEWS SPORTS WRITER
It's part of the game.
No matter what racing does, horses will always die in this sport.
Routine Addendum became the 24th horse to die on a New York Racing Association track Sunday and a race later Nika became the 25th. Neither was a result of a breakdown; both were accidents.
Turning for home in the fifth race, Routine Addendum, a $52,000 purchase, clipped heels with Gold Prospect and fell, snapping his right front leg.
There was no hope for the fallen horse, who was quickly euthanized on the track.
The next race, Nika, a $500,000 purchase, broke through the starting gate and ran off before trying to jump the outer rail, where she failed and instead, impaled herself.
Somehow she got up and tried to continue to run before collapsing, having bled out. Whether it is dirt, turf or some type of synthetic surface, none of them would have prevented yesterday's accidents.
This, unfortunately, will always be part of the game no matter how many pre-race examinations are made.
If there's one thing I could wish for this sport this Christmas season, is that Nika would be the last horse to ever die on the track, but I know it won't.
No matter all the care that these animals are given, this is something you have to accept will happen, whether it's the Kentucky Derby or yesterday's fifth race.
What shouldn't be part of the game are steroids or other illegal medications that are out there being used by criminals who disguise themselves as trainers and veterinarians.
There are plenty of honest horsemen, but there are some who try to take advantage of these magnificent animals.
Hopefully, one day they'll all be caught.
ONTARIO-BRED NATURAL HAT TRICK AT MOUNTAINEER!
DYNAMIC VICTORY (Victory Gallop-Dynaco, Dynaformer) won a non-winners of 4 lifetime for $5K claiming at Mountaineer yesterday. The 4yo filly was bred in Ontario by Ivan Dalos.
POOR TO FAIR won the very next race at Mountaineer, for trainer Debra Rombis and owned Anothing DiPaola. The 3yo gelding is by Rock and Roll out of Toosmome Bluff by Pine Bluff and was bred by Box Arrow Farm in Ontario. The gelding won for $5,000 at 6 to 1 in a 9 furlong race for non-winners of 3.
And TRIPPI RULES, bred by Huntington Stud Farm in Ontario, romped in a 6 furlong maiden 2yo allowance race in the 6th event of the card. The Trippi-Sign of the Dove, Cormorant filly won by 4 3/4 lengths at 9 to 1 for owner D. Chin.
UTMOST RESPECT, a 6yo gelding by Numerous-Buxton Spice, Bold Ruckus, won for $4,000 claiming at Charles Town yesterday as 70 cents on the doillar. He won by 9 1 /4 lengths and was born inOntario at Minshall Farms.
YEAR IN REVIEW SHOWS ON THE SCORE CHANNEL
from Woodbine TV department...
Wed., Dec. 17th - 7 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 21st - 2:30 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 29th - 6 p.m.
Sunday, January 4th - 1 p.m.
The show is a look at the Top 20 moments/stories of the Woodbine/Mohawk
VOTE ON THE THOROUGHBLOG POLL!
As discussed yesterday on THOROUGHBLOG, the Sovereign Awards are a bit unusual in that the voting is done in early December and does not include the whole year.
Is it time for a change (again?).
Vote on the Poll (at right).