Monthly Archives: December 2013

VHBPA/Colonial Downs Discussions over Race Days Ongoing

According to VHBPA Executive Director Frank Petramalo, a Monday meeting between the VHPBA and Colonial Downs to discuss race days ended in an impasse. The VHBPA has requested eight weeks with four days of live racing per week.  Colonial Downs maintained its intention to run 12 days of racing over four weeks.

The horsemen’s contract for Colonial Downs expires at the end of December and Petramalo indicated that unlike in past years, when the VHBPA extended the contract for… Continue reading

Miss Besilu Breaks Maiden at Gulfstream

Miss Besilu, a Virginia-bred half sister to Horse of the Year Saint Liam, broke her maiden by 2 1/4 lengths on Saturday. The daughter of Medaglia d’Oro ran without Lasix in the 1 1/16-mile contest.

A half to Horse of the Year Saint Liam, Miss Besilu breaks her maiden at Gulfstream on December 7.

A half to Horse of the Year Saint Liam, Miss Besilu breaks her maiden at Gulfstream on December 7. Photo Courtesy Adam Conglianese.

Miss Besilu, trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott for Benjamin Leon’s Besilu Stables, was a $2.6 million weanling from the Evans… Continue reading

Virginia-connected Win Photos

Check out the win photos from the Virginia-connected winners this month!

Virginia-bred Honorable, a 2-year-old MSW winner at Charles Town November 23, is owned, bred and trained by Susan Cooney.

Virginia-bred Honorable, a 2-year-old MSW winner at Charles Town November 23, is owned, bred and trained by Susan Cooney.

Ms. Fool Proof, trained by Larry Curtis, won an allowance at Charles Town on November 14.

Ms. Fool Proof, trained by Larry Curtis, won an allowance at Charles Town on November 14.

Hunter's Hollow, owned and bred by Sam English, won an allowance at Charles Town on November 16.

Hunter’s Hollow, owned and bred by Sam English, won an allowance at Charles Town on November 16.

Ned Evans-bred Mail won an allowance race at Aqueduct on November 29.

Ned Evans-bred Mail won an allowance race at Aqueduct on November 29.

Audley’s Dr. Jens von Lepel Retires

Dr. Jens von Lepel, after 16 years of overseeing Audley Farm, has announced his retirement at the close of the year. He and his wife will return to his native Germany this week. Horse Manager Jamie McDiarmid will be responsible for Audley Farm Equine going forward.

We encourage you to read the lovely article in Middleburg Life on Dr. von Lepel’s retirement. You can find it online here.

The VTA wishes Dr. von Lepel and his family the… Continue reading

Va-owned Miss Mischief Tries $100,000 Stakes Saturday

Be sure to catch the $100,000 Garland of Roses at Aqueduct on Saturday! Dianne Manning’s stakes-winning filly Miss Mischief takes on Grade III winner Baby J in the 6-furlong test. Both fillies will be competing against older company.

Check out the NYRA race preview here.

Check out the VTA story about Miss Mischief’s victory in the Pearly City Stakes last month.

Miss Mischief dominating in the Pearly City Stakes. Photo courtesy Adam Conglianese.

Miss Mischief dominating in the Pearly City Stakes. Photo courtesy Adam Conglianese.

The field for the Garland of… Continue reading

VTA Spotlight: Susan Cooney

By VTA Intern Ian Brickey

To most observers, a race begins at the starting gate. To Virginia trainer, owner, and breeder Susan Cooney, it begins much earlier. While performance on the track determines stakes winners, it’s the preparation and training that goes on at places like Cooney Racing Stables in Delaplane, Va., with its 5-furlong training track and turf gallops, that separates the winners from the rest.

Since relocating from Camden, South Carolina, Cooney and her husband Patrick have broken… Continue reading