harness racing

Gabe Prewitt to The Red Mile

Harness racing's Gabe Prewitt has been named VP of Racing & Sports Wagering Operations at The Red Mile in Lexington, Kentucky. Caesars Entertainment has an agreement with a joint venture between Keeneland Association and The Red Mile to open Central Kentucky's only brick-and-mortar retail sportsbook locations, subject to regulatory approvals from the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. Prewitt was formerly the Director of Racing with Caesars Entertainment, overseeing racing operations at five properties, as well as serving as a track announcer and as part of several broadcast teams on harness racing's...

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More Than Three Years After Original Indictments, A New Name Surfaces

In the case involving high-profile Thoroughbred trainers Jorge Navarro, Jason Servis and more than two dozen others, Standardbred horseman Brandon Simpson has pled guilty to one count of drug adulteration and misbranding conspiracy for his role in a scheme to provide horses with performance-enhancing drugs. What makes the Simpson case unusual is that his guilty plea came some three years after the original charges against Navarro, Servis, et. al. were unsealed and there was no mention of Simpson's name in the indictments released at that time. Court records released this...

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Awaiting Prison In Doping Scandal, Vet Charged With Cheating Casino Out Of $21,646

The convicted New York-based harness racing veterinarian Louis Attilio Grasso, who is scheduled to report to federal prison Jan. 24 to begin serving a 50-month sentence for his admitted role in peddling drugs in the 2020 racehorse doping conspiracy sweep of arrests, was arraigned Friday in Pennsylvania on charges that he swindled $21,646 from a casino over the past week by allegedly conspiring with a dealer in a cheating scheme. According to stories first reported by the Pennsylvania news outlet the Times Leader and the gaming industry site Casino.org, security...

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Harness Trainer Guido Gets 20 Months in Prison for Doping

Thomas Guido, III, a 57-year-old former Standardbred trainer based in the Northeast, became the third defendant in related criminal racehorse doping cases this week to be sentenced to prison. On Thursday, a federal judge put Guido behind bars for 20 months as part of an agreement with prosecutors in which Guido pleaded guilty to one felony count of substantive drug misbranding and adulteration with intent to defraud and mislead in exchange for three conspiracy charges against him being dropped. Guido was also ordered to pay a $10,000 fine. Prior to...

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Harness Trainer Pleads Guilty in Doping Case

Harness trainer Richard Banca pled guilty to one felony count Apr. 19 in the ongoing federal racehorse doping conspiracy case. According to court documents filed electronically in United States District Court (Southern District of New York), "From at least in or about 2015 through at least in or about January 2020...Richard Banca, the defendant, with the intent to defraud and mislead, in interstate commerce, adulterated and misbranded drugs, and caused the adulteration and misbranding of drugs in interstate commerce... "Banca misled and deceived state and federal regulators with respect to...

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Letters to the Editor: John Chambers

Thanks for covering the closure of Pompano Park and the warnings to other racetracks. I am one of the few today that enjoys watching and betting on both Thoroughbred and harness racing. I am from the Philadelphia area and grew up spending many a summer weekend going to both Delaware Park and Brandywine Raceway. For years, both breeds were popular here, but over the years we lost both major harness tracks, Brandywine and Liberty Bell Park. Even two of our primer Thoroughbred tracks, Garden State Park and Atlantic City Race...

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Caught Up In Fishman Scandal, Hall Tells Her Story

It was back in October of 2018 that a small-time harness racing owner and trainer named Adrienne Hall reached out to veterinarian Dr. Seth Fishman. She was new to the Florida harness circuit and says she simply was looking for a vet to help her with her horses. What she did not know at the time was that she had just made one of the worst mistakes of her life. Hall's relationship with Fishman evolved and became complicated. It led to Hall, 42, testifying earlier this year in court against...

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Meadowlands Says It Won't Scratch Adrienne Hall's Horses

The Meadowlands released a statement late Thursday saying it will not scratch horses owned by Adrienne Hall, a harness owner and trainer who testified in federal court last week against Seth Fishman while admitting she used his performance-enhancing drugs on her horses. Fishman was found guilty Wednesday of two counts of conspiring to violate adulteration and misbranding laws and the manufacture of PEDs administered to racehorses, and faces up to 20 years in prison. The statement stands in contrast to the policy of the United States Trotting Association, which said...

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Keeneland, Kentucky Downs Break Ground On Cumberland Run Harness Track

Officials from Keeneland and Kentucky Downs broke ground Monday on Cumberland Run harness track in Corbin, Ky. and Cumberland Mint, a satellite historical horse racing venue in Williamsburg, Ky. The project is a joint venture between Ron Winchell and Marc Falcone's ECL Racing Management and Keeneland Association. Winchell and Falcone are the majority owners and managing partners in Kentucky Downs and The Mint Gaming Hall in Franklin in south-central Kentucky between Bowling Green and Nashville. Projections call for construction to be done in time for Cumberland Run to conduct its...

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NJ Harness Driver Fined $5,000, Suspended 20 Days for Whipping Prior to 3-horse Spill

A harness driver in New Jersey--where whipping a horse to make it run faster is prohibited in Thoroughbred racing but permitted with restrictions in Standardbred races--has been fined $5,000 and suspended 20 days for whipping his pacer so indiscriminately during a race last month that the judges deemed his actions caused a three-horse spill that injured one rival horse so severely it had to be euthanized. According to a ruling posted on the New Jersey Racing Commission (NJRC) website, driver Joe Bongiorno was in the bike behind Pat Stanley N...

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With 140-Mare Cap Of Its Own, Harness Industry Weighs In On Farms Suing Jockey Club

When the United States Trotting Association (USTA), the breed registry for standardbred racing in the U.S., proposed in 2006 limiting the number of mares a stallion could be bred to, Russell Williams, who then was a member of the USTA Board, prepared for an impending storm. He knew some breeders would be unhappy and there would likely be lawsuits looking to overturn the rule. But Williams, who is also an attorney, never wavered, confident that, in the end, the legal system would side with the USTA. He was right. The...

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Kentucky Advances Clenbuterol Regulations; Turfway Switches Weekly Race Days

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) advanced a proposal Dec. 8 that will create a set of new regulations designed to curb clenbuterol's off-label abuse as a lean muscle mass builder. The move is part of a trend this year among North American racing jurisdictions aiming to eliminate clenbuterol's misuse as a performance enhancer while putting in place restrictions that will still allow the drug to be prescribed for its intended purpose as a bronchodilator to treat airway disease. The new Kentucky rules on clenbuterol will require 1) A specific...

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