March 30, 2018
Board Members Present: Melodie Bultena, Pam Christopherson, Jim Engstrom, Tim Floyd, Mary Lou Griffin, Nina Hagen, Dana Halvorson, Dr. Duane Hopp, Greg Luce, Debra Pabst, and Jennifer Webber. Absent: Keith Swagerty. Staff present: M. Anne Sweet.
The meeting was called to order at 2:00 p.m. at the WTBOA offices by President Halvorson. The WTBOA business meeting followed a joint meeting with members of the Board of the Washington Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (WHBPA) and their staff, Executive Director MaryAnn O’Connell and Lanna Allen.
Previous Board Minutes: Minutes from the February 23, 2018, meeting were presented and reviewed. Webber moved to approve the February minutes as presented. Luce seconded the motion and the minutes were approved.
Finance Committee Report: Treasurer Pabst reported that the Budget to Actual report is better than anticipated, but noted that it is still early in the year. The Profit and Loss statement for the Annual Awards Banquet was reviewed. There was a net profit of $24,000 raised from the banquet. Attendance continues to grow at the banquet, and it has become an important social event at the beginning of each year.
Sweet has received a bid for renting sound equipment for the sales pavilion from DA Sound, as well as a bid for $200 to troubleshoot the current system to see if it can be fixed. DA Sound also submitted a quote for a “truss tower” that could hold a TV monitor for the new readerboard system. Engstrom looked at the current pavilion setup and offered to be on hand when DA Sound comes out for the troubleshooting appointment, so that possible solutions for placement of the TV monitors can be discussed. It was noted that the Sales Committee should also have input into the design of the system, so an appointment will be scheduled prior to the next Sales Committee meeting. Sweet will report to the Committee at that time.
Northwest Race Series (NWRS): Committee Chairperson Pabst reported that there is $148,000 in funds available for the 2018 series. This year $160,000 has been committed to the series, with the same allocation as last year, except that this year $40,000 (compared to $30,000 last year) will be given to the Gottstein Futurity for the top five placing NWRS-eligible horses, no matter where they finish. This will make a $90,000 purse for NWRS-eligible horses in the Gottstein. The other NWRS funds are allocated as follows: $20,000 for each race, plus $10,000 for each in Nominated Sire Awards, to the four two-year-old stakes races (excluding Washington Cup) – the King County Express, Angie C., WTBOA Lads, and Barbara Shinpoch stakes.
Sales Committee Report: Committee Chairperson Webber reported there are 41 horses entered as of this date, which is significantly behind the number of entries at the same time last year. It was noted that the next Sales Committee meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 8, but the meeting may be rescheduled to an earlier date, depending on when the appointment with DA Sound assessment is scheduled. [The appointment with DA Sound was later scheduled for Thursday, April 19. It was decided to let the May 8 committee meeting date stand as is.]
Publications Report: Sweet reported that the Spring issue of the magazine is at the printer and staff is now working on the Farm and Service Directory. She noted that there are currently only 14 farm listings for the Directory, compared to 49 in the previous directory, in spite of repeated mailings. Thus far, there are only three trainer listings. Halvorson and Sweet had gone through the previous farm listings, and unfortunately, many of those farms are no longer around. Halvorson proposed the four or five Board members meet for two or three hours on a Saturday or Sunday to canvas the Emerald Down backstretch and recruit trainer listings, as well as farriers or others who may be wish to be included. Sweet will send out an e-mail asking for volunteers. Other suggestions for inclusion are: anyone who has entered the sale, the new Buckley Feed Store, Coastal Feed, Tractor Supply, Bill’s Country Feed, etc.
Topics for the Summer/Sale issue of the magazine were discussed. Suggested topics included:
- SITA (Society of International Thoroughbred Auctioneers) cataloging standards versus Black-type standards
- Having veterinarians weigh in on repositories at the sales; i.e., things that would be seen in the repository and their importance, or what is important statistically (Dr. Wayne McIlwraith)
- Standing ridgeling castration (Dr. Claude Ragle)
- Why buy a colt versus a gelding (tax purposes)
- Air, scoping, pre-purchase airway issues (Dr. Claude Ragle)
Washington Horse Racing Commission (WHRC)/Emerald Downs Report: At the March WHRC meeting it was noted that Emerald Downs currently has just under 600 horses on the grounds, which is about 100 horses down from last year. It was noted that what happens at Golden Gate Fields may have an impact, as they are considering closing for training this summer. [It was later learned that Golden Gate would remain open for training this summer.]
Emerald Downs President Phil Ziegler reported that an anonymous donor had given $180,000 to be put toward the stakes schedule. The $100,000 Getaway Stakes for three-year-olds at a mile and a sixteenth has been added on closing day, September 23; and $20,000 has been added to each of the first four stakes of the meet, bringing them back up to the $50,000 level.
One of the main focuses of the March meeting was on medication rules, which were adopted in accordance with ARCI model rules. The WHRC will issue a policy statement regarding implementation of the new rules, which will provide some leniency for the first year for overages at the new level, as long as they do not exceed the old levels.
Annual WTBOA Membership Meeting: The Annual Membership Meeting has been scheduled for Sunday evening, July 1. Keynote speakers were again discussed. It was noted that Dr. Claude Ragle might be a good speaker for this event. Hagen volunteered to contact him and will ask him to speak on airway issues, especially in regards to sales, and standing ridgeling castration.
Goals and Initiatives: Prior to today’s WTBOA Board meeting, a joint meeting with the WHBPA Board was held. It was felt that it had been a positive and productive meeting. Among the ideas explored for Washington-bred conditions were:
- Increase the claiming price for Washington-breds by about 25 percent ($3,250 for Washington-breds in a $2,500 claiming race; $5,000 for Washington-breds in a $4,000 claiming race; etc.); or give two pounds on weight if running for the lower claiming price.
- 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.
- It was noted that the Racing Secretary would be instructed to keep these conditions consistent throughout the season and that he make all races the same all the time, with no extras written to override them.
- It was also noted that there was support from all in attendance at the table, including all WTBOA Board members, as well as WHBPA Board members Sue Spooner, Robbie Baze, Greg Moore, Andy Evans, Tom Wenzel, Jeff Metz (speakerphone), and Executive Director MaryAnn O’Connell.
- It had been moved, seconded and approved by the WTBOA Board that a joint letter from both the WTBOA and WHBPA Boards and signed by both Presidents would be written to Racing Secretary Bret Anderson requesting these conditions beginning with Condition Book 2, since Book 1 was already printed.
- The WHBPA Board did not have a quorum present, but O’Connell will communicate with the rest of her Board regarding these topics and noting that those member in attendance were in support of these ideas.
Distance Series: Jody Peetz has proposed a series of distance claiming races, with additional purse money to be put up by sponsors. To date, $10,500 has been pledged and received. The deadline was extended to April 22, and the WHBPA will be sending a letter to their members about the series and soliciting additional funds. The WTBOA has already included information about the series in their e-newsletter.
Washington TOBA Winner of 2017: The TOBA award is awarded to the individual/partnership, which breeds horses in Washington, which breeds primarily to race, rather than to sell, and which has enjoyed the greatest success during the previous year racing homebreds in or out of Washington. Success is measured by realization of the most from what one has at hand. Sweet will send a list of previous winners, as compiled and maintained by staffer Susan van Dyke. Thoughts and suggestions from Board members are welcome.
Reminder: There will be a celebration of life for Dr. John Traber on Saturday, April 7, 2-5 p.m., at the WTBOA Sales Pavilion. He was a prominent veterinarian, past WTBOA Board member, and the state veterinarian for several years, among other things.
Next Meeting Date: The next meeting is scheduled for Friday, April 27, 2018.
Hopp moved to adjourn the meeting, which was seconded by Bultena. The meeting was adjourned at 2:45 p.m.
April 27, 2018, Meeting Minutes
Pending approval at next meeting
Friday, June 1, 2018