CYPRESS, Calif. (Sept. 29, 2017) – The California Horse Racing Board conducted its regular meeting Thursday, September 28, at Los Alamitos Race Course. Chairman Chuck Winner presided. Vice Chair Madeline Auerbach and Commissioners Jesse Choper, Fred Maas, Araceli Ruano and Alex Solis also were in attendance.
The audio of this entire Board meeting is available on the CHRB Website (www.chrb.ca.gov) under the Webcast link. In brief:
- Chairman Winner began the meeting by announcing that George Krikorian completed his term as a racing commissioner and stated that Krikorian’s departure is a loss to the Board and the racing industry. The chairman then welcomed newly appointed Commissioner Fred Maas and expressed confidence that he will be a strong addition to the Board. Commissioner Maas fills the seat vacated by Steve Beneto.
- Executive Director Rick Baedeker reported that handle at all California tracks increased by 8.3 percent in August, compared with August 2016.
- The Board allocated 2018 racing dates for the Southern California thoroughbred and fair racing circuit that duplicate the 2017 racing dates with modifications for calendar differences. The Board allocated blocks of dates beginning with Santa Anita (December 20, 2017, through June 26, 2018), followed by Los Alamitos for daytime thoroughbred racing (June 27 through July 17), Del Mar (July 18 through September 4), Los Alamitos for the Los Angeles County Fair meet (September 5 through September 25), Santa Anita (September 26 through November 6), Del Mar (November 7 through December 4), and Los Alamitos for daytime thoroughbred racing (December 5 through December 18). The actual dates these meets will run within their allocated blocks will be determined when each license application is approved.
- Following lengthy presentations and discussions with Northern California stakeholders, the Board decided to wait until the October 26 meeting to allocate 2018 thoroughbred and fair racing dates in the north. In the meantime, the Race Dates Committee will conduct a meeting in an effort to bring about consensus on the northern calendar.
- The Board approved two rule additions and four amendments mandating that horses be microchipped in order to race in California. Executive Director Baedeker said approximately 900 horses received microchips in a pilot program designed for horse inventory and tracking. He said the industry has accepted the responsibility for implanting microchips in the remaining 4,000 horses, which could take as long as 18 months. Beginning this year all foals registered with The Jockey Club must be microchipped.
- The Board approved the license application for the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club to conduct a race meet from November 1 through November 28. This meet will include the Breeders’ Cup World Championships on November 3-4. Del Mar representatives provided details on extensive plans for Breeders’ Cup week, including on-track events and promotions along with evening activities.
- The Board approved five new or continuing directors of the California Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Foundation – the industry program that provides medical care and other services to racetrack workers. The five directors are Rick Gold, Ken Smole, Josh Rubenstein, Gerry Piccioni, and Damascus Castellanos.
- The Board authorized the Pacific Coast Quarter Horse Racing Association to conduct its annual sale of yearlings and mixed stock on October 7-8 at Los Alamitos Race Course.
- The Board adopted a regulatory amendment prohibiting the presence of clenbuterol in the official urine test sample for all horses participating in quarter-horse races.