April 27, 2018
Board Members Present: Melodie Bultena, Pam Christopherson, Tim Floyd (phone), Mary Lou Griffin, Dana Halvorson, Dr. Duane Hopp, Greg Luce, Debra Pabst, Keith Swagerty, and Jennifer Webber. Absent: Jim Engstrom and Nina Hagen. Staff present: M. Anne Sweet.
The meeting was called to order at 12:25 p.m. at the WTBOA offices by President Halvorson.
Previous Board Minutes: Minutes from the March 30, 2018, meeting were presented and reviewed. Webber moved to approve the March minutes as presented. Bultena seconded the motion. The minutes were unanimously approved.
Finance Committee Report: Treasurer Pabst reported that things are going well and the financial reports are a little ahead of budget. There were some maintenance expenses that resulted from a fire inspection (exit and emergency lamps and batteries replaced; exit sign installed in pavilion; exit latch for disabled door repaired; combustible materials removed from electrical room [no expense for the latter, other than staff time]). There was also some expense for painting both jockeys (leading breeder and leading owner for 2017) in front of the building.
It was also noted that there is currently $11,000 being held on our books that is actually for the “Horsemen Helping Horsemen” Distance Series that was proposed by Jody Peetz. $14,100 has been committed thus far, and donations are still being taken. Emerald Downs management supports the series, which will begin with the first race at 1 1/8 miles on August 11. The series is based on a Turf Paradise prototype.
Northwest Race Series (NWRS): Chairperson Pabst reported that there had been one late payment in the amount of $3,500 for the 2018 series. That brings the funds available for 2018 up to $151,422, with $160,000 committed.
To date, there are 13 stallions nominated for the 2021 NWRS, with a couple of other nominations still anticipated, including Running Tap. Nominations to date total $14,250. Halvorson and Christopherson will contact their connections. [Two additional late nominations were received, bringing the total to 15 stallions nominated for a total of $15,500.]
Sales Committee Report: Committee Chairperson Webber reported there are 91 horses entered as of this date. Today’s date (April 27) is the deadline for Summer Session yearlings, although additional horses will be allowed if they come in within a reasonable time period. The Mixed Session deadline is Monday, May 14. The next Sales Committee meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 8. There was discussion emphasizing that personal phone calls to prospective buyers can make a difference.
Sweet reported that the technician from DA Sound, David Hunter, had been out the previous week to check out and diagnose the sound system. Engstrom and Sweet were both on hand for that process. Hunter found one non-functioning amplifier and changed some wiring to bypass that amp. He also repaired loose wiring that he found for one of the microphones on the auctioneer stand. The sound check of the speakers while he was there seemed strong and stable. He suggested to Sweet that she turn on the system and let it play at times to see how it holds up. Sweet did follow through on this, but found that after two or three hours, the sound was breaking up significantly, sometimes going off completely for a few seconds at a time. Halvorson suggested that this could be a wiring issue, rather than with the speakers themselves. Sweet will contact electrician Randy Morgan about checking the wiring and will also communicate with Emerald Downs to see if they have a lift we could borrow. [After talking to Emerald Downs’ front side maintenance man Jim Clark, it was determined that we will need to rent a lift. Clark referred us to Papé Rents, which recommended an articulated lift called a Genie Z30. Sweet will coordinate with the electrician to schedule for a time in early to mid-June. Bidspotter Jeff Fritsch, who will be providing the new readerboard software, will be in our area in late May and will meet with the electrician at that time to review the plan for installation of the three TV monitors that will replace the current readerboards.]
Publications Report: Sweet reported that progress had been made in obtaining listings for the Farm and Service Directory. Staff will also soon be working on the Sales Catalog and the Summer/Sale issue of the magazine. Subject stallions for future Northwest Stallion Spotlights were discussed. It was determined that the focus should be on new stallions: Raised a Secret, Pontiff, Dynamic Impact, and Lord Lochinvar were suggested, as well as Python, Running Tap, and Dontmesswithkitten. Sweet commented that she had noted that with the popularity of social media, especially Facebook, staff had not been receiving as many foal reports as in the past and asked if publication of foal reports online and in the magazine was passé. It was unanimously agreed that we should continue to publish foal reports as in the past (in print and online) and that we should remind breeders about submitting foal reports.
Washington Horse Racing Commission (WHRC)/Emerald Downs Report: The Emerald Downs horsemen are having to learn what is required to abide by the new medication rules, which were adopted at the March WHRC meeting in accordance with ARCI model rules. The WHRC has issued a policy statement regarding implementation of the new rules, which provides leniency during this first year for overages at the new level, as long as they do not exceed the old levels.
Emerald Downs’ opening day was a tremendous success. This year instead of being open for two days on opening weekend, they were only open one day on Sunday, April 22. The live-on-live handle was up 186 percent, and they were up 50 percent overall. They were able to fill 10 races, the attendance and the weather were excellent, and overall, there was great buzz. It was noted that the Sun Downs handle was also up for their opening weekend, April 21 and 22.
Washington‘s 2017 TOBA Award Winner: Three nominees were presented: Coal Creek Farm (Barbara Ratcliff), Karl Krieg, and Keith and Jan Swagerty. However, it was noted that all three had previously been TOBA winners in 2015, 2012, and 2011, respectively. Other nominee suggestions presented at the meeting were: Elwin and Patti Gibson, Tim Floyd, Tim and Sue Spooner, and Greg Luce. Tim Floyd and his Warlock Stables, along with partnerships, were voted the TOBA award winners for 2017.
Annual WTBOA Membership Meeting: The Annual Membership Meeting is scheduled for Sunday, July 1. Hagen had spoken with Dr. Claude Ragle, who had agreed to come and speak on the topic of airways and standing ridgeling castration.
On a separate note, Pabst noted that WSU veterinary students had visited Hagen’s El Dorado Farms and the Pabsts’ Blue Ribbon Farm, as well as spent a day at the races. Hagen will be asked to report on this in more depth at the next Board meeting.
Goals and Initiatives: Pabst reported on the WHBPA meeting and subsequent Condition Book meeting, at which the various proposals from the joint WTBOA/WHBPA meeting had been presented. The results follow:
- Increase the claiming price for Washington-breds, starting at the $5,000 level, but it is only applicable to open claiming races not restricted to non-winners of two, non-winners of three, etc.; or give two pounds on weight if running for the lower claiming price.
- Still under discussion – Add an extra condition for non-winners of two; i.e., Washington-breds could be non-winners of three; on all races $2,500 through Allowance.
New Business: Halvorson expressed concern that while the 2nd vice president position is part of the Executive Committee, the person holding that position is not part of the Finance Committee, stipulated as such in the Bylaws. Sweet noted that it had previously been established as such so that there were five members (an uneven number) on each of the aforementioned committees; Executive Committee being comprised of President, 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer; and Finance Committee being comprised of President, 1st Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and elected Finance Committee Member. After discussion, Pabst moved that the Bylaws should be changed to recognize the position of 2nd Vice President as part of the Finance Committee. Webber seconded the motion. The motion will be voted on at the next regularly scheduled meeting of the WTBOA Board of Trustees.
Reminder: There will be a celebration of life for Dr. A. L. “Bud” Hallowell on Thursday, May 10, 2-5 p.m., in the Emerald Room on the fourth floor at Emerald Downs. He was a prominent veterinarian, past Washington Thoroughbred Foundation Board member, and WHRC Commissioner, and a friend to many in the industry.
Next Meeting Date: The next meeting is scheduled for Friday, June 1, 2018.
Griffin moved to adjourn the meeting, which was seconded by Pabst. The motion was unanimously approved, and the meeting was adjourned at 1:45 p.m.
June 1, 2018, Meeting Minutes
Pending approval at next meeting
Sunday, July 1, 2018