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Watchdog group forms to protect NY breeders and owners!

Posted Sunday May 17, 2009 1:52:15 PM EDT

If you breed horses in New York, we would like to know if you would like to be included on a free mailing/newsletter list that is now being compiled for a "grassroots" type watchdog organization currently being constructed so that the more breeders in New York will have a voice, while making sure that the one's that have voices, don't forget the smaller breeder or the purpose of the fund. 
Simply E mail us at with your e mail address that you would like to be included. Please pass this on to anyone else that would be interested and may want to be included in this movement!    
While it may seem to many that the current program for New York breds is one of the best in the country, it appears that based on what many of you have opined, that the program falls short, relative to it affecting the majority of the breeders, farms and stallion owners in a positive way.  Simply stating that they "start with an advantage" is just not enough. 


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Comment by karusha
Speaking to some members recently, one brought up a suggestion that a NEW group of NY Breeders be formed. Maybe it's pie-in-the-sky, but what the hell, we have issues that need to be heard and, seemingly, are not being given all that much attention. I'm blaming no one, and I'm blaming everyone, including all of us for failure to make more noise and and rattle some cages in NY State, instead of acquiescing to the 'status quo'.
Some of us meet, as soon as possible, face to face, and come up with a plan to get more NY breeders involved and form our own group that will (maybe) get some legs with solid opinions to present to 'the powers that be'. I have no personal animus with anyone on any board, but I firmly believe that NY racing could be improved with the NY Breeder as it's primary contributor (and recipient). Try this: Can you imagine where NYRA would be WITHOUT US?
NY breds provide the full fields that they (and the wagering public) demand. How long would NYRA be around with 9 tiny fields of horses from Florida and Kentucky...?? Think about it!
Friday May 22, 2009 5:55:54 AM EDT

Comment by marestation
Yes, while it may be true that the program was recently saved from the elitists, who were forging ahead with a self serving plan, which would have destroyed the plan altogether, what have they done to improve the program? The program is simply not as good as it could be for the very people that it was implemented for in the begining. its time for a change to make it comprable to other State bred programs, if not better. The current representation has fallen way short of the mark to do just that. Aside from their total disregard for the real NY Breeders, their "under the radar" way of doing things is in direct conflict of the tranparancy that is demanded of any leadership to be acceptable by practice. Until things actually are changed for the better, I would hesitate before lauding any of these members.
Tuesday May 19, 2009 10:45:20 AM EDT

Comment by proactive
In addition to contacting the NYTB executive director concering my opposition to eliminating claiming race awards, I also contacted Fund Chairman John Sabini's office. Chairman Sabini stopped the Fund meeting from voting on the original proposal six days after the proposal was communicated to the NYTB membership.
I believe all NY breeders should be working together, including those from the Genessee Valley Breeders Association, who is not represented on the Fund board, to support NY thoroughbred breeders and racing.
In addition each NY thoroughbred breeder needs to communicate his or her needs to the local and state level politicians. As a former LI teacher I saw teachers salaries go from sub-standard in the 1970s to the best in the nation today because of each teacher's political activism.
The marketplace will determine the best sires and national drug standards will improve the breed. And no policy should discourage the breeder of homebreds who want to participate in the sport of thoroughbred horse racing.

Tuesday May 19, 2009 10:31:10 AM EDT

Comment by proactive
I was active in e-mailing NYTB members concerning the original proposal to eliminating claiming race awards. I was opposed to this proposal and it turned out many members also were opposed. Thus the original proposal was withdrawn.
I must respond to the recent blog which criticizes specific board members. I would like your readership to know that Tom Gallo, Chester Broman and Vivien Malloy were opposed to the proposal to eliminate claiming race awards. Also, I was told by a board member that the board was told they must vote on the proposal at the meeting before the awards dinner on April 13. Making decisions under short time constraints can result in poor decisions.

Tuesday May 19, 2009 10:22:28 AM EDT

Comment by mousse
Great comments by Tom & Southbelle and this watchdog group is nice idea. However as long as the same people (Ostrager, Gallo, Broman, Purdy, Brida, etc.) sit on that board NOTHING will ever get accomplished. The Fund board is fully aware of the program's problems (check out the webcast of it's recent meeting on their site) and is grappling with solutions. They NEED and WANT our input not the elitist ideas of those that got the program in this wrong-headed direction.
We can correct this if we cooperate. It didn't just happen and it will take a while to straighten it out. Be realistic with your stock, keep trying to upgrade your mares and only breed to the very best stallions in NY. (The stallion listings numbers tell the cold hard truth about a horse).
One other point I must make is that the reason there are so many NY Bred races is because that is what makes up the majority of the horse population. The races fill with full fields and larger fields translate to more wagering opportunities. Also, owners of non NY Breds are less likely to send their stock to NY trainers because of the extremely unfriendly atmosphere that exists here (i.e. the "Air Power" fiasco, countless deductions from their purse winnings, etc.).
We have allowed this witches brew of a perfect storm to be created and now have to deal with it's consequences on our livihood. Time to get to work and make our voices heard!
Monday May 18, 2009 1:35:17 PM EDT

Comment by karusha
I agree (mostly) with southbelle...The real problem (as I have conveyed to many in our industry) is the open award $$ going to the 'claiming crews' all winter that seriously drain the fund. We must do ALL we can to ensure the legitimate NY Breeder gets the MAJORITY of the dollars that are distributed. We help no one in NY that scrapes and scrambles to 'get that feed bill paid' and 'put up those new fences' etc., etc., by giving OUR money to folks who use the NY Bred program as a gimmick. The money should STAY HERE.
Also NYRA should be more closely in tune with our mission, (vis a vis race conditions and condition books), than cater to trainers and owners who seemingly dominate the racing secretary's decisions. Remember this incontrovertible point : Our sport is driven by gambling. Period. And horseplayers would rather see a full field of horses sired by NY stallions than a 5-6 horse field with 2 AP Indy's, an Elusive Quality, a Fu Peg and 2 Wheelaways. In essence, that becomes a 4 horse race! More opportunity brings more income and ultimately more for US to share.

We should be real careful, going forward, or there will really be nothing to discuss soon.
Monday May 18, 2009 10:33:46 AM EDT

Comment by southbelle
I have suggested ad nauseam to many of our current representatives of both the NYTB and the NYTBRA to consider a few changes that would result is a more breeders friendly program which would properly reward breeders that stay within the State to breed tomorrows racehorses. We would like to see the following:

1) Educate out of State breeders of the program - After speaking to many out of state breeders it occurred to me, that many were unaware that Finger Lakes Racing is part of the NY Bred program. Most associate New York Breds with NYRA and fear that lesser skilled horses have little or no chance to earn breeders awards in the spring, summer and fall. Most don't even know the rules of producing a horse that can be registered in the New York breeding program. Thus I have suggested that a simple bullet point type ad in all of the major print publications catering to Thoroughbred breeding and racing, may help immensely in educating out of State breeders.

It serves little or no purpose to continually run the same messages if in fact that the people we are trying to lure into the program, still don't get it.

Running story's of New York's most successful "Droplings" or news feeds from the Thoroughbred Times is simply not getting the job done. Sending newsletters only to paid members of the NYTB, falls way short of getting the word to the barns and farms out of State.

2) Write races that read "NY Stallions Preferred" - This would go a long way in pushing up the value of a true New York Bred, while it may bring more mares to the State as yearly residents thus allowing farms and stallion owners to actually make some money. I would suggest that such a restriction be limited to stallions that are presently standing in the State at time of breeding and still in the State at time of the foals race, unless deceased.

If any one truly believes that the Funny Cide story was good for New York breds, they simply haven't spoken to most out of State breeders. Funny Cide's purchase price at auction tells the market that great horses can be bought cheap if they are New York breds. Along with the fact that he was a "dropling" that dominated against lesser competition is not doing our program any financial justice. It's simply bad publicity and marketing for the program.

3) Do away with "Open Company" Awards - Why should a non State breeder benefit from our State breeding program? Seems to me that the money would be better spent elsewhere. Using this money to benefit NY Breds and NY Stallions when winning out of State seems like a sounder idea to me with a far reaching effect both publicity wise as well as financially. At present the awards are given to owners that may have never bred a horse or contributed to the program whatsoever. At the time this benefit was adopted it made sense in lieu of the smaller amount of New York Bred Races written. Times have changed and so should this perk.

Sunday May 17, 2009 1:52:15 PM EDT

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