Keeneland has named prominent equine practitioner Dr. George Mundy as Equine Safety Director and Jim Pendergest, General Manager of The Thoroughbred Center (TTC) and longtime racetrack professional, as Director of Racing Surfaces. Both positions are new and will encompass Keeneland and TTC.
“Dr. George Mundy and Jim Pendergest bring invaluable race track expertise to the Keeneland team, and they reinforce our commitment to the safety and welfare of our horses and riders, which is priority number one,” Keeneland President and CEO Bill Thomason said. “Keeneland strives to provide the safest racing environment possible, and we hold ourselves to the highest standards. The addition of these two positions enhances our established safety practices and our leadership advocacy for additional reforms.”
As Equine Safety Director, Dr. Mundy will develop, communicate and enforce safety and integrity policies; review all racing-related accidents with the goal of prevention; assess relevant equine health and safety research; and communicate best practices to the racing community and public.
“Throughout my career as a veterinarian, my primary charge has been to take care of the horse,” Dr. Mundy said. “My position at Keeneland is a continuation of that responsibility to ensure the safety and well-being of the horse.”
During Pendergest's 19-year tenure at Keeneland, he has overseen major renovations to the main track, including installation of the all-weather surface in 2006 and the dirt surface in 2014. He brings extensive experience to his role as Director of Racing Surfaces, having supervised installation of six race tracks, 10 training tracks and some 20 equine arenas in the U.S. and Canada.
“It is an honor to be selected to fill this new role for Keeneland,” Pendergest said. “We have a great team at Keeneland whose first concern is the safety of our riders and horses. Together we are using every bit of available technology and data to assist us in that mission as we approach the Fall Meet.”
Pendergest will continue as General Manager of TTC in addition to his duties as Director of Racing Surfaces.