Thoroughbred Charities of America Named Beneficiary of Fantasy Horse Racing Game

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Thoroughbred Charities of America announced today it has been named the beneficiary of a portion of the daily game handle of Race Track Warriors, a fantasy horse racing game. Race Track Warriors, by Equus Interactive, will donate 0.5% of the handle of every game, exclusive of the Jockey Draft game.

The donations from Race Track Warriors will be applied exclusively to TCA’s grants to approved charities that work to assist Thoroughbreds at the conclusion of their racing careers.

“We greatly appreciate Equus Interactive’s commitment to giving back to Thoroughbreds,” said Erin Crady, executive director of TCA. “We are honored to be selected as their charitable beneficiary and we look forward to further assisting many organizations working to retire or rehabilitate, retrain and rehome Thoroughbreds.”

On behalf of the Equus Interactive leadership team Jordan Olin remarked, “Players now have a chance to give back to the game everyday; it’s no secret that everyone loves these amazing Thoroughbred athletes and wants to show their support. As part of our platform we wanted to give the players the opportunity to give back across the board; it is part of our mission. We are quite aware that not all of the Thoroughbreds have the same opportunity when their careers end and we want to show responsibility towards these great athletes. This is a wonderful opportunity for Race Track Warriors to give back and help the sport.”

Equus Interactive provides multifaceted services to players through the Race Track Warriors fantasy gaming experience and also through race tracks seeking to deliver and market online contests to their customer base, thereby leveraging the rich features of a fantasy gaming experience.  Announced last week, Jockey Draft, the newest fantasy game to join the Warriors platform, also gives back to the industry through the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund and Jockeys’ Guild.

TCA was formed in 1990 to raise and distribute funds for charities in the Thoroughbred industry which provide a better life for Thoroughbreds both during and after their racing careers by supporting retirement, rescue, research and by helping the people who work with them. Over the last 24 years TCA has distributed over $20 million in grants to more than 200 Thoroughbred-related organizations. TCA is the charitable arm of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA).

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Who's Hot

12044Dean Butler dominated the opening weekend at Canterbury Park. The 44-year-old scored at nearly a 53% win rate and came in the money 88% of the time. He scored a win the in 10,000 Lakes Stakes aboard Bourbon Country and came in third in the Lady Slipper Stakes.

John Davila Jr. continued to maintain his lead in the standings at Finger Lakes by winning 47% of his mounts and coming in the money an astounding 95% of the time. On Saturday, Davila had four wins, one second, and one third in six mounts. For the week, Davila finished with nine wins, five seconds, and four thirds in 19 tries.

Corey Lanerie is having a solid meet at Churchill Downs and continued his winning ways last week by scoring at almost 30% and coming in the money on over 66% of his mounts. Lanerie won the Kerteena Stakes aboard Courtesan on Saturday and followed up that performance with three wins in a row on Sunday’s card. Lanerie finished the week with eight wins, five seconds, and five thirds for earnings of $275,335.

See the week’s top jockeys by winning percentage here.

See the week’s  top jockeys by wins here.

See the week’s top jockeys by earnings here.

AQHA Quarter Horse Standings

Raul Ramirez Jr. (Delta Downs) remains on top of the wins leaderboard for the year with 71 from 292 mounts. David Alvarez (Delta Downs) ranks second with 67 wins from 280 starts and Omar Reyes (Remington Park) ranks third with 59 wins from 325 mounts.

Raul Ramirez Jr. was the first to surpass the million dollar mark in earnings with $1,069,647 from 292 starts to remain in first place in the AQHA earnings standings. GR Carter Jr. (Remington Park) is sitting in second in the standings with $961,333 and Esgar Ramirez is third with $937,264.

 Keep up with all the AQHA leaders here . . .

Castellano’s Veteran Patience Earns the Jockey Draft Ride of the Week

jdlogo_600Ironicus went from competing in allowance races to scoring an impressive victory in the Longines Dixie (Gr. 2) on Saturday’s Preakness card at Pimlico. A big part of that improvement was the all-star handling by jockey Javier Castellano, who earned the Jockey Draft Ride of the Week honors.

Breaking from the inside, Castellano was content to save ground in both turns aboard Ironicus. While many of the top favorites in the Dixie were forced to go six to 10 wide on the turn entering the stretch, Ironicus was making his move on the rail.

Castellano eased the four-year-old son of Distorted Humor around Cage Fighter at the sixteenth pole and went on to score a convincing victory in the $300,000 stakes event.

Follow Javier on Twitter @jjcjockey

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Husbands Loses Irons on Far Turn, Goes on to Win Race

Friday’s fourth race at Woodbine was highlighted by an athletic ride from Patrick Husbands to guide Thebarberofbrazil to victory despite losing his irons entering the final turn.

Husbands, who recently earned a record eighth Sovereign Award as the nation’s outstanding jockey, demonstrated why he is among the best at his craft with a remarkable effort to stay on his mount after being bumped sharply into the final turn of a seven furlong maiden allowance race.

A patient Husbands gathered up Thebarberofbrazil (#7, green cap) and rallied six-wide at the top of the stretch, surging past rivals, still without the hardware, to earn a head victory in a thrilling three-horse photo. Lion of Judah finished second, a head in front of The Feather Lands.

Thebarberofbrazil covered seven furlongs in 1:24.38. He paid $8.50 to win.

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Female Rider Quartet Heating Up at Penn National

With three female jockeys in the track’s top 20 in wins – Kaylia Albright, Natasha Coddington, and Erika Strunk-Micklos – and newcomer Chelsey Keiser climbing the ranks quickly, Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course is experiencing one of the strongest groups of lady riders in its 40-year history.

Leading the group of talented fillies is apprentice Albright, 22, currently sixth in the 2013 Penn National rider rankings with 64 wins. A native of nearby Jonestown, Pa., she launched her thoroughbred riding career in 2012, finishing tenth among Penn National jockeys with 59 wins.


Albright comes from a racing family. Her mother Amy is a former jockey who now trains horses at Penn National, and uncle George and grandmother Dona are both trainers at Penn National.
“The fact that I grew up around here, that everybody knows my family, and that my parents rode has contributed to my success,” Kaylia said. “And everybody really pushed me into riding. I wanted to do it, but they had to give me that extra push to get started.”

One of her fans is two-time leading Penn National trainer Murray Rojas, who often uses Albright on her horses.

“I think Kaylia is an up-and-coming rider with great hands and a great attitude,” said Rojas. “She works very hard and loves the horses. It’s not just a job to her; she loves riding. She comes in the barn in the morning and gives the horses peppermints. Not too many riders do that.”

Another apprentice rider enjoying success this year is 20-year-old Natasha Coddington, a Seattle, Wash.-native who currently sits 13th in the yearly Penn National standings with 22 wins.

Her uncle, John Heath, was a professional jockey, and she credits him for sparking her interest in racing.

“When I was about 15, he put me on a horse and that was the end of the story – I just fell in love with it,” Coddington said. “From there he taught me how to break babies, and he guided me through my career so far to get to here.”

Coddington has caught the eye of Penn National’s leading trainer John Locke, who often uses her on his horses.

“Horses seem to run for her,” said Locke. “She’s not afraid of anything, which is very important because horses pick up on when a rider is worried or afraid. Some of the owners actually request her to ride their horses, which is kind of unusual since owners often want more experienced riders.”

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JockeyTalk360.com spotlights the riders across North America and around the world who may be the bravest, toughest and most accomplished of all athletes. The Jockey of the Week is selected by a vote of representatives of America’s Best Racing, the Daily Racing Form, Equibase, the Jockeys’ Guild, the Paulick Report, the Thoroughbred Daily News, National Thoroughbred Racing Association, National Turf Writers and Broadcasters, Thoroughbred Racing Associations, Turf Publicists of America and racing fans.

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