By T. D. Thornton
The Barretts Sales July 25 paddock sale of race-ready horses at Del Mar Thoroughbred Club will be canceled and combined into an Oct. 16 yearlings and all-age auction at Fairplex, the auction company announced Thursday.
The news, which was delivered during the public commentary period of the July 12 California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) meeting by Kim Lloyd, the general manager of Barretts, was met with a rebuke by commissioner Madeline Auerbach.
“I am concerned about the sales, obviously,” Auerbach said. “I’m concerned for the breeders in the state, and I’m concerned for people bringing in horses.”
Barretts is owned and operated by the Los Angeles County Fair Association, a 501(c)5 mutual benefit corporation, and its headquarters is located on the Fairplex fairgrounds in Pomona, which had hosted an annual Thoroughbred meet until 2014.
“Fairplex did it strictly for a cost-saving measure. That was their reasoning with me, and that’s what I was told,” Lloyd said when asked by Auerbach to explain the logic behind the move.
Lloyd added that the Barretts Aug. 28 select yearling sale at Del Mar would be unaffected.
“I just want to put it on the record that I would anticipate that Pomona and the management of the Los Angeles County Fair system will guarantee us that those next two sales will go through as scheduled, because any more postponements or hitches can’t be tolerated by the industry or by any of us,” Auerbach warned.
“They have assured me that they will, but I agree with you,” Lloyd replied. “I definitely think that we need to have further communication to ensure the future of these two sales.”