Letter to the Editor: Agent for Positive Change

Monday night's initial event | Photos by Z

by Brian Malloy

The initial public forum for Light Up Racing at Fasig-Tipton in Lexington Monday night kicked off the most encouraging effort I've seen in my 44 years in horse racing. Vicky Leonard, the Kiwi PR pro who spearheaded a similar effort in Australia after a spate of tragic accidents in the Melbourne Cup, cogently outlined this grass roots campaign to a packed house and was greeted with thunderous applause.

I taught the capstone course in public relations for several years at the University of Kentucky with a systems approach stressing internal publics are just as important as external publics and PR is not simply spin, it is an agent for positive change. Light Up Racing is an exemplar.

In meetings like the ones being held in Lexington, through seminars planned in person and on-line, and through the resources provided by the excellent website up and running at lightupracing.com, the people who make our industry run can seize the day and transform tragedy into transcendence to build a sustainable sport that demonstrates daily our love for the horse.

Monday's meeting was standing room only with a broad spectrum of grizzled industry insiders and enthusiastic young up-and-comers ready to be the change our sport needs. Thank you Price Bell and Jason Litt for your efforts to get this off the ground. I can't wait for the Mar. 5 meeting at Keeneland so we can get started.

Brian Malloy, who is the former managing editor of Thoroughbred Times and ran the Lexington, Ky., office of Shandwick, Intl., then the world's largest PR firm, is now a Thoroughbred breeder in Central Kentucky.

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