60 Broad St.
Red Bank, NJ 07701
About the TDN
Originally founded in the mid-eighties, the Thoroughbred Daily News was acquired in its entirety by MediaVista, Inc. in 1993. A three-to-five page daily fax with 120 subscribers at that time, the TDN quickly grew from an industry upstart to everyone’s favorite daily read, now received by thousands of daily subscribers. The TDN is published in Red Bank, New Jersey in the Jersey Shore region by the busy staff of 23 listed below.
The TDN Team
After attending the University of Pennsylvania, Weisbord began his racing career working on the backstretch for trainers Allen Jerkens and Walter Kelley in 1972. Two years later, he took out a trainer’s license. After operating a small racing stable in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania with lifelong friend Alan Goldberg, Weisbord turned to bloodstock management, creating the Executive Bloodstock Management Corp. in 1979.
In 1983, he co-established the Matchmaker Breeders’ Exchange, which introduced a new means of selling stallion seasons and shares via public auction, much like a stock market for racehorse futures.
From 1991 to 1993 Weisbord served as architect and president of the American Championship Racing Series, a coast-to-coast tour of televised championship events for older horses on ABC and ESPN.
In 1993, Weisbord co-founded MediaVista, which purchased a controlling interest in the Thoroughbred Daily News and became its publisher, moving the paper from Kentucky to New Jersey. The TDN has gone on to become the most influential daily newspaper in the Thoroughbred industry, visited by close to a million unique readers annually from 180 countries and territories around the world. In 2016, they launched TDN Weekend, a monthly digital lifestyle magazine, as a companion to the daily.
In 2003, Weisbord was introduced to Trakus, a cutting-edge tracking technology originally applied to hockey. Weisbord was instrumental in the application of that technology to horse racing. Weisbord is now Trakus’s Chairman of the Board, and has helped to develop their systems to allow the public to better follow their horse and understand racing. The technology has been perfected to create a real-time graphic display which continually identifies each horse during every stage of a race and produces the most complete set of data available, including the actual feet traveled per runner. The internet-compliant technology provides an easier introduction to the sport for new fans, and should help to introduce newcomers to the sport.
After launching the technology at Woodbine in 2006, Trakus is now installed at 25 leading tracks around the world, including leading venues in North America such as the NYRA circuit, Keeneland, Del Mar, Churchill Downs, Gulfstream, Santa Anita and others. Internationally, it has been implemented in Dubai’s Meydan Racecourse, Singapore’s Kranji Racecourse, Turkey’s Veliefendi Race Course and at Sha Tin and Happy Valley in Hong Kong, and was most recently launched at leading Melbourne tracks Flemington and Moonee Valley.
A Philadelphia native, Weisbord has owned and bred racehorses, and has been a commercial thoroughbred breeder for 30 years. He continues to operate a small racing stable, mostly in the New York and New Jersey area, highlighted by his co-ownership of 1989 Eclipse-Award winning sprinter and 1990 Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner Safely Kept, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2011. He is also an active participant in stallion investment and stallion portfolio management.
In June, 2008, he was elected to the board of the Breeders’ Cup Limited Members and Trustees. In 2012, he was elected to the Board of Directors.
In 2013, Weisbord was selected as the winner of the John W. Galbreath Award for Outstanding Entrepreneurship in the Equine Industry from the University of Louisville’s College of Business’s Equine Industry Program.
Sue Morris Finley spent her childhood commuting to Belmont Park on weekends from her home in Weston, Connecticut. A cum laude graduate of New York University with Bachelor’s Degrees in French and Journalism, she began an internship in the NYRA press department while still a senior at NYU and accepted a full-time position at the track in her final term.
The daughter of a World War II combat veteran and POW who returned home after the war to teach high school French, she was the recipient of NYU’s Founders Day Award as the school’s top French student, and earned a scholarship for NYU’s Master’s program in French. However, the lure of Belmont Park proved to be too great, and she left graduate school after a semester to concentrate on her racing career. She remained at NYRA for eight years, rising to the position of Senior Media Coordinator, and left in 1991 to work as a researcher for ABC’s Wide World of Sports, where she worked on horse racing as well as amateur sports such as the 1991 Pan American Games in Cuba and the Little League World Series, as well as college football and the New York City Marathon. In 1992, she took a job at one of ABC’s properties, the American Championship Racing Series, where she served as Director of Administration and Publicity.
In 1993, she and ACRS founder Barry Weisbord took over the production of the Thoroughbred Daily News.
For 12 years, she was the First Vice President of the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, a national organization dedicated to the humane retirement of former racehorses, and still chairs their annual fundraiser. She earned a Professional Certificate in fundraising from NYU’s George Heyman Center for Philanthropy.
A native New Englander and lifelong Boston Red Sox fan, she lives a stone’s throw from the TDN’s Red Bank, NJ offices with her two children.
Vice President of International Operations
Gary King is a native of Ireland, and grew up near the renowned Curragh racecourse. Gary graduated with a Bachelor of Business Studies from Trinity College Dublin (Ireland) in 2008, and then completed the Darley Flying Start management trainee program in 2010. Darley Flying Start provides twelve scholarships annually to people who want to study and experience the global Thoroughbred industry at the highest level. It combines a dynamic range of lectures, visits, and hands-on experience. The program has developed links with established universities and training providers worldwide, who deliver and certify business and equine modules.
A lifelong resident of Monmouth County, NJ, Jessica graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the College of St. Elizabeth in Convent Station, NJ. A love of writing and of horses led her to the publicity department of Monmouth Park racetrack where she spent two summers before joining the TDN staff in 1995.
When not slaving over a newsletter, she spends time with the two men in her life: a fun-loving German Shepherd named Hajj and Brian, an exuberant ex-racehorse with an irrational fear of trees.
Because pain is cathartic, Jessica enjoys distance running and has completed three marathons. She is a lover of Irish literature, Cary Grant movies and mocha frappaccinos.
Born and raised in suburban Chicago, Alan joined the TDN staff in September 1998. After receiving an advanced degree in German from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, he held various jobs outside the industry before pursuing his “dream job” in horse racing. A fan of the game ever since cashing a $17.80 show ticket on Tolomeo in the 1983 Budweiser (Arlington) Million, Alan would frequently attend morning workouts and rarely missed a weekend at the races. Now a resident of the Jersey Shore, Alan is the proud “Papa” to two little girls and recently became a new dad with the birth of Jake in June 2009.
Lucas Marquardt was born in Saratoga and raised in Schoharie, New York. His father, Robert, trained Standardbred horses before becoming a successful businessman. His mother, Jill McGrath, was a librarian who is now retired. Marquardt graduated Emerson College in Boston with a degree in Media Arts. He has lived in New York City since 2001. Marquardt has bred horses in New York and races at Charles Town in West Virginia with trainer John Dillow. Away from the track, his interests include the Dallas Cowboys, honky tonk bars, history books and competitive walking.
Steve Sherack joined TDN’s editorial staff in May 2003, just a year after graduating from St. John’s University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism. The native New Yorker caught the racing bug at an early age following frequent trips to Belmont Park and Aqueduct, and family vacations to Saratoga Racecourse. Steve began his career in the industry as a handicapper and editor at American Turf Magazine, where he remains a correspondent. A sports fanatic, he rarely misses a season without catching a road game of his beloved New York Mets or a trip to the World’s Most Famous Arena to root on the Red Storm in the Big East Tournament. After seven years of navigating the Belt Parkway and Staten Island Expressway, Steve finally traded in his E-Z Pass for an apartment in Red Bank, New Jersey, just a short walk from TDN headquarters.
A native of Wethersfield, CT, Brian DiDonato joined the TDN staff in April 2010. He is a 2009 graduate of Connecticut College, where he majored in Philosophy and minored in English. Brian was first introduced to horse racing as a child during summer trips to Saratoga with his father. In the beginning, he had no interest in the racing, but as he got older he became fascinated with the races, the horses, and especially the art of handicapping. His hobby developed into an obsession during his freshman year of college and Brian soon decided to pursue a career in racing.
In addition to his role at TDN, he is managing partner of Franklin Ave. Equine Advisors, which organizes affordable racing/pinhooking partnerships and provides various consultation services.
Born in Brooklyn but raised most of her life in Monmouth County, Christie is a lifelong equestrian, riding before she was walking. She was introduced to racing on annual trips to the Belmont Stakes with her father and she fell in love with the sport. She followed it regularly and was introduced to trainers and owners in the local industry, which lead to frequent trips to Monmouth Park. Christie joined the TDN in March 2013 after receiving her Masters degree in Communications from Rutgers University. She graduated with her Bachelors degree in Journalism from Rutgers as well in 2011.
When not at work in the TDN office, Christie can be found at the barn, riding her Quarter Horse mare Satin, who she competes in hunter jumper and barrel racing. Christie is also an avid photographer and has a small private equine photography business called Shutter Savvy Images
Heather was raised in central Wyoming. Her love of horses, Thoroughbreds especially, originated from summers spent visiting her grandfather in Ohio, who bred American Quarter Horses. During college at the University of Wyoming, she completed an internship at Peterson and Smith Equine Reproduction Center in Summerfield, FL. This fueled her decision to enter the Thoroughbred industry after obtaining her degree. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Animal Science in late 2009 and participated in the Kentucky Equine Management Internship (KEMI) in Lexington, KY from January to June 2010 for the breeding and foaling season. Heather joined the TDN in December 2013. Away from the office, she spends most of her time running, reading and working on her handicapping skills.
European and Worldwide Information Services
Kelsey Riley joined the TDN staff in July 2012, and was promoted to International Editor in 2013. In this role, Kelsey oversees the daily TDN content from countries outside the U.S. and Canada. From Ontario, Canada, Kelsey fell in love with horses at a young age, and barrel raced for seven years. She watched her first Thoroughbred race when she was 13, and hasn’t looked back since. Kelsey worked at Schonberg Farm and Woodbine Racetrack while completing a degree in media studies at the University of Guelph-Humber in Toronto. In 2010 she was accepted to the Darley Flying Start program, and spent two years working and learning in the Thoroughbred industries in Ireland, England, Kentucky, Australia, and Dubai. This unique opportunity allowed Kelsey to learn from industry leaders and visit most of the world’s major racetracks, stud farms, and bloodstock sales companies.
From an Irish family steeped in horseracing, Newmarket-born Sean Cronin spent part of his early years at the Lillingston Family’s Mount Coote Stud in Kilmallock, Co. Limerick. His first racing memory was Red Rum’s dramatic defeat of Crisp in the 1973 Grand National and from that moment his passion for the sport was ignited.
Having initially trained as an accountant, Sean joined the accounts department of the British Bloodstock Agency in 1988 before taking a role at Martin Pearce’s World Racing Network in 1997. He has run CafeRacing alongside Tom Frary since 2000 and currently resides in the picturesque county of Norfolk, England (a long stone’s throw from The Queen’s Royal Studs).
Alongside Red Rum’s first Aintree success, his fondest memories include The Minstrel’s 1977 Derby, El Gran Senor’s 1984 2000 Guineas, Dancing Brave’s 1986 Arc de Triomphe, Royal Academy’s 1990 Breeders’ Cup Mile, Motivator’s 2005 Derby and all three of Istabraq’s Champion Hurdle wins. An avid fan of the West Ham United soccer team and the Limerick hurling team, Sean is the eldest son of the late Johnny Cronin–a former member of the Tattersalls groundstaff–and the father of Thomas, Benjamin, Jessica, Róisín and Daisy.
Tom Frary was born and grew up in Norwich, England, the biggest city near Newmarket. After getting a Bachelors Degree, with honors, in Politics at Leeds University, he started working for Martin Pearce’s World Racing Network in 1999 after winning the Martin Wills Memorial Trust Racing Writing Awards. His love of racing goes back to his early childhood, with visits to Newmarket and the coast’s Great Yarmouth sowing the seeds.
He now runs Cafe Racing (which supplies the TDN with its European information, and more) alongside Sean Cronin and continues to live and breathe horseracing…although an interest in cycling is starting to creep up on him thanks to being introduced to the Tour de France.
He is married to Louise, who has seen to it down the years that there is a large animal presence in the Frary household, and they now pander to the needs of their horse Dolly, dogs Quinn and Charlie, and cats Oscar and Cato.
Director of Advertising
Alycia has been with the TDN since 1993, starting as a member of the editorial staff before taking charge of the advertising division in 1996. A native New Yorker, she graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Radio, Television and Film before earning her Masters in Screenwriting from New York University.
After a short stint as an intern at Thoroughbred Racing Communications, she joined the TDN and has been a staple ever since. Her role includes creating and managing TDN advertising and working daily with farms and agencies on developing marketing ads.
Lia is a lifelong Jersey Shore native. She received her Bachelors degree from Monmouth University where she studied both Graphic Design and Marketing and recently received her Master’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communications from West Virginia University. Lia landed her job with the Thoroughbred Daily News in May 2004, and as a lifelong animal lover has been developing her knowledge and interest in horse racing ever since. She lives just a mile from the beach with her husband Tim and their dog Yoshi.
Amanda Crelin was born in Red Bank, NJ and raised in nearby Middletown, NJ. She grew up surrounded by a family of horse racing enthusiasts and has been an avid fan of Monmouth Park for as long as she can remember. Her father, Paul, is a partner in Team Power Play Racing, LLC which has several thoroughbreds stationed at New York racetracks. Crelin attended Arcadia University and spent a semester abroad in Australia during her junior year. She graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design in May 2010 and has worked on numerous freelance design projects prior to joining the TDN.
Born and raised in Hunterdon County, NJ, horses have been a part of Alexa’s life since age 5. After getting a summer job working at Colonial Downs in Virginia, she decided to switch from a hunter/jumper background to try her hand at galloping racehorses. Spending the next five years in Florida got Alexa hooked on the racing scene and the opportunity to work for some of the finest farms and trainers in the business.
After a few injuries she decided it was best to stay out off the tack and focus on her original career path in Marketing/Advertising. What a better way to stay involved in a sport she loves than joining TDN!
A Minnesota native, Michelle was born and raised in the Thoroughbred racing industry. Growing up around horses meant she began riding before she learned to walk. From handling Thoroughbred racehorses to foaling out broodmares, Michelle has a lifelong passion for the Sport of Kings. While still in college, she pursued a successful pinhooking venture, purchasing two weanlings from the Keeneland November Sale. In 2013, she acquired her first broodmare.
Upon graduating from the Art Institutes International with a bachelor’s degree in Digital Film and Video Production in 2012, Michelle landed a Digital Media Specialist position with Canterbury Park in Shakopee, MN where she worked for four years. She joined the TDN team in October 2016.
Outside of work, Michelle enjoys barrel racing with her Quarter Horse mare French Fry, spending time at the beach, hiking, watching movies, and exploring new places.
Alayna Cullen is from Co. Kildare in Ireland. She grew up surrounded by horses and attributes her passion for horse racing to her Grandparents and Aunts who own Middlelane Farm, a successful breeding farm. Having completed a degree in Equine Science from the University College Dublin, Alayna was accepted onto the prestigious Godolphin Flying Start program where she spent two years traversing the world, learning all she could about the horse racing industry. Upon graduation from the course, in 2017, Alayna joined The TDN team and will be based in Europe for us.
Aside from horse racing Alayna is mad about dogs, good coffee and culinary experiences (Godolphin Flying Start gave her so much more than just an education in horse racing, she can now cook!). Although moving some 20miles away from the family home to start Godolphin Flying Start was a bit tramautic for Alayna, she now loves hopping on a plane and has lots of plans to travel more. Any destination ideas are greatly appreciated.
Sarah grew up in Howell, NJ and received her Bachelor of Arts in English from Rutgers University. After a seven-year stint in the world of financial services, Sarah’s lifelong love of horse racing led her to the Thoroughbred Daily News.
Since 2003, Sarah has honed her skills as a horse racing photographer and has been mentored by some of the top shooters in the sport. Sarah’s award-winning photography is displayed in galleries and has been published internationally in dozens of books, magazines, and newspapers.
As a volunteer, Sarah has documented over 5,000 horses in need at rescues, auctions, and emergency horse aid efforts. Her Horses and Hope Calendar Project raised over $100,000 for equine charities in the first three years, and is an enormous social media success.
An avid equestrian since childhood, Sarah currently rides her Thoroughbred, Wizard (Jockey Club name Doctor’s Secret), in a variety of disciplines, from dressage to hunter paces. When not riding or shooting at the racetrack, you can find her in the front row photographing local and national rock and roll acts, including her husband Jonathan’s latest band.
Director of Customer Services
Vicki Forbes is a native of Frostburg, Maryland. She got her start in racing freelance riding at farms in the Baltimore area. She galloped horses at Pimlico for trainer Frank Bonsal, before marrying trainer John Forbes and taking almost two decades off to raise a family. Acting on a tip from bloodstock agent Eddie Rosen, the Thoroughbred Daily News lured her out of retirement in 1997 for what they claimed would be a temporary project…and never let her go. She has risen to the position of Director of Customer Services, where she serves as the TDN’s primary (and invaluable) interface with clients.
She lives in Holmdel, New Jersey with her husband, John, their three children, and four-legged friends too numerous to mention.
A Kansas native who has worked in racing journalism since 1974, he is the co-founder of the newsletter Racing Update, and served as the paper’s editor until 1993, when he moved to Scotland. Oppenheim developed a reputation as an independent observer of the sales scene in the early 1980’s, and he and the staff of Racing Update originated a number of methods of stallion and sales analysis which have been adopted throughout the industry. For the past 10 years he has written a weekly column for TDN, as well as reporting from the major sales. He also works as a consultant, primarily for pedigree analysis, in a private capacity.
Andrew Caulfield writes a weekly column for the Thoroughbred Daily News on pedigree analysis, a fascination which crystallised during the 12 years he spent as one of the principal writers at Timeform, where he was responsible for researching the pedigrees of all the two-year-olds. The former editor of The Thoroughbred Breeder, Pacemaker and The European Racehorse, he was also The Sporting Life’s bloodstock correspondent for 12 years. For the past eight years, he has written a weekly racing column for Japan’s Gallop magazine in Japan, and is also works as a bloodstock consultant, principally for Juddmonte Farms.