COVID-19

NYRA Track Announcer John Imbriale Tests Positive for COVID-19

NYRA track announcer John Imbriale received a positive COVID-19 test result after experiencing mild symptoms following the conclusion of the Saratoga meeting, according to NYRA's Senior Director of Communications Patrick McKenna. "As a result of the mandatory 10-day isolation period, Imbriale will miss the opening weekend of the fall meet and is scheduled to return Thursday, Sept. 23," McKenna said. "In his absence, Frank Mirahmadi will handle the race calling duties Thursday, Sept. 16. Chris Griffin, who was named the lead race caller at Parx in March, will call Friday-Sunday....

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Woodbine to Implement Vaccination Policy

Woodbine is implementing a COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for its staff, horse racing participants and contractors starting Sept. 15. The track is fully supportive of the Government of Ontario's requirement for guests to provide proof of vaccination in select settings which includes horse racing venues and casinos. As per the Government of Ontario's new policy, guests entering Woodbine Racetrack or Casino Woodbine, Woodbine Mohawk Park Racetrack or Elements Casino Mohawk, Greenwood Teletheatre and WEGZ Stadium Bar will be required to provide proof of full vaccination as of Sept. 22. Employees will...

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Letter to the Editor: Catherine Parke

The impact of losing David Richardson has taken a tremendous blow to the hearts of the many people that adored him. David was an extremely intelligent, insightful leader who's passion and energy was directed to the greater good of our industry. If you were fortunate to have him touch your life, you ended up a much better person altogether. David died on the last day of his beloved Saratoga race meet.

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Spanish Mission Enters Quarantine in Advance of Australian Targets

The well-traveled group winner Spanish Mission (Noble Mission {GB}) will enter quarantine on Thursday before traveling to Australia. His goals Down Under include the Oct. 16 G1 Carlton Draught Caulfield Cup and the Nov. 2 G1 Lexus Melbourne Cup. The May 2 Yorkshire Cup S. hero, who races for Team Valor LLC and Gary Barber, was last seen running second to Stradivarius (Ire) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) in the G2 Lonsdale Cup S. at York on Aug. 20. Trainer Andrew Balding is pleased with the 5-year-old entire and hopeful of...

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COVID-19 Claims Dr. J. David Richardson, Ky-Based Owner, Breeder, Regulator

David Richardson, M.D., a distinguished Kentucky-based surgeon who owned and bred Thoroughbreds for nearly half a century and was known as a thoughtful, cerebral racing regulator whose zeal for the sport shone through in his volunteer service on numerous industry-related boards, died Sept. 7 in Saratoga Springs, New York, after developing pneumonia related to COVID-19. Richardson had been briefly hospitalized in the intensive care unit at Saratoga Hospital; he was believed to be 76 years old. Chauncey Morris, the executive director of the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners...

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Brown, Saez, Klaravich Win Saratoga Meet Titles; Record Handle Tops $800M

SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY--After accepting his fourth H. Allen Jerkens training title late Monday afternoon, Chad Brown spoke to a common theme on the final day of a joyous season following the COVID-19 summer without fans at Saratoga Race Course "Happy to have everybody back at the meet. That was the big thing," Brown said. "The most rewarding part of the meet was having everybody back. Last year, win or lose, it just wasn't any fun. I can speak for me and a lot of people around me that it just...

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Buyers, Sellers, Sales Companies Talk COVID-19 and the Fall Sales

The daily number of U.S. deaths from the COVID-19 virus neared 1,000 per day last week, the highest level the country has seen since February. The seven-day moving average of COVID-19 cases reported by the CDC, is at 149,263, and continues to rise. There are currently four variants circulating in the United States; Alpha, Beta, Delta, and Gamma, with Delta making up over 99% of all cases. It seems like every day, someone we know in racing has contracted COVID, from trainer Todd Pletcher to the TDN's own Christina Bossinakis,...

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Crowd Capacity Increased at Irish Racecourses From Sept. 6

Irish racecourses can host up to 50% of their outdoor capacity beginning on Sept. 6 following the Irish Government's latest COVID-19 response roadmap, Horse Racing Ireland announced on Thursday. Racecourses may also utilise 60% of their indoor capacity for hospitality purposes should attendees consume food and beverages indoors as long as they provide evidence of their Digital Covid Vaccine Cert (DCC). Attendance in both spheres will be increased to 100% as long as all covid restrictions are lifted on Oct. 22. Regarding Irish Champions Weekend on Sept. 11 and 12,...

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Oaklawn Offers Pay Raises for Fully Vaccinated Workers

Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort, one of the largest employers in Garland County, Arkansas, is offering all active and future fully vaccinated team members a vaccine incentive. Beginning Oct. 10, wages for all current and future fully-vaccinated non-tipped, hourly team members will be raised to a minimum of $16 per hour. Tipped hourly team members will be raised to a minimum of $8.50 per hour and salaried team members will receive a 3% increase. Oaklawn's new starting annual salary for fully-vaccinated salaried team members will be $40,000 per year. Current team...

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'22 California Schedule Could Include One-Week Break

As the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) begins the planning process for crafting 2022 race dates on both the Southern and Northern circuits, it appears as if there is some consensus for including a one-week break with no racing, although no exact time frame for any proposed hiatus has been publicly identified. At Wednesday's monthly meeting, CHRB vice chair Oscar Gonzales updated the full board on the two-hour dates subcommittee teleconference that took place Tuesday and included representatives from tracks and horsemen's groups. "We obviously didn't take a vote on...

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Todd Pletcher Positive for COVID-19

Trainer Todd Pletcher has tested positive for COVID-19, and will continue to isolate until Thursday, he confirmed via text Sunday morning. Pletcher, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame on Friday, August 6, said that he sought out the test after experiencing allergy-like symptoms and after a co-worker tested positive. "I got the results back this morning," he said via text. "Starting Monday, I thought I was experiencing some allergies. Since I've been vaccinated, I wasn't concerned as I didn't have any traditional Covid symptoms. Late Friday, a co-worker...

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Irish Racing Growth Continues Despite Pandemic in HRI Report

Six-month statistics for horse racing and breeding in Ireland shows underlying growth in the industry despite the ongoing challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. The report was released by Horse Racing Ireland on Thursday. The metrics of horses in training (+24%), owners (+23.9%), new owner (+31%),  runners (+23.8%), fixtures (+8.4%), and race numbers (+14.6) have all shown strong growth over the corresponding pre-pandemic figures for 2019. Attendance at Irish racecourses was the major area where figures suffered, as there has been no public attendance at any racemeeting in Ireland for...

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