Monthly Archives: February 2018

New Off Track Betting Center Set To Open In Collinsville Saturday March 3rd


The Windmill OTB Sports Grill is inside the Dutch Inn in Collinsville. The facility went through a complete renovation and will open March 3rd.

The Virginia Equine Alliance’s fourth Off Track Betting (OTB) Center will open Saturday March 3rd — in Collinsville, Virginia. That town is located just outside of Martinsville and is less than an hour’s drive from Roanoke, Virginia and Greensboro, North Carolina.


The 3400 square foot facility is called “The Windmill” and is being completely renovated from the former Flying Dutchman Lounge. It will be a combination sports bar and OTB, featuring 47 televisions, ten betting stations, a full bar and restaurant  serving lunch, dinner and appetizers.

The Windmill is inside the Quality Inn hotel on heavily traveled Route 220 (2360 Virginia Avenue). The hotel is known to locals as the “Dutch Inn” due to a large windmill located on the hotel’s facade. With many big Kentucky Derby prep races most weekends in March, college basketball’s March Madness, St. Patrick’s Day and Martinsville Speedway’s NASCAR weekend (March 23-35), The Windmill will be a popular destination in its first month.

Prep race season for the May 5th Kentucky Derby really heats up this Saturday March 3rd with the $400,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes for 3 year olds at Gulfstream. There are a total of eight stakes on the card so The Windmill’s opening day should be quite festive.

Racing fans can also bet the action from Gulfstream at three other in-state OTBs. The Richmond OTBs are at Breakers Sports Grille and Ponies & Pints, while the Buckets Bar & Grill OTB is in Chesapeake. Virginia residents can also bet via one of four on line betting partners —,, and

Virginia-Bred Greyvitos Still In The Derby Chase

Graded Stakes Winner Greyvitos Returns to Work Tab

Son of Malibu Moon had bone chip removed after Remington Mile triumph.

The door hasn’t closed on Greyvitos‘ classic hopes just yet.

The graded stakes-winning son of Malibu Moon  returned to the work tab Feb. 26 for the first time since undergoing surgery to remove a bone chip in a knee, covering three furlongs in :37 1/5 for trainer Adam Kitchingman at Del Mar.

Greyvitos’ connections hope he could return to the races by mid-April, in time to possibly squeeze in a Kentucky Derby prep race.

Greyvitos has been sidelined since his 2 1/4-length victory in the one-mile Remington Springboard Mile Stakes Dec. 17, an effort that came just over a month after he broke his maiden with a Bob Hope Stakes (G3) score Nov. 11 going seven furlongs at Del Mar. While Kitchingman stressed he won’t rush the issue, he is hopeful the grey colt could make a return to the races by mid-April, in time to possibly squeeze in a prep for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1).

“He’s doing really good,” Kitchingman said. “It’s still too early to say, but (making the Derby) would be great. We X-rayed him last week and the vet was real happy with him, so we’re moving forward.”

One source of encouragement for Greyvitos’ connections while the colt has been on the mend is that the form of his victories has held up. In the Bob Hope Stakes, he bested eventual Smarty Jones Stakes victor Mourinho by 1 1/2 lengths. Finishing behind him in the Remington Mile was Combatant, who then posted runner-up finishes in both the Smarty Jones and Southwest Stakes (G3).

“You have to do the right thing by these horses and if it works out, it works out. If not, there are other races we can aim for,” Kitchingman said. “But I’m very happy with his progress so far.”

Owned by Triple B Farms, Greyvitos has won two of four starts and currently ranks 16th on the Kentucky Derby Leaderboard with 10 qualifying points. He was bred in Virginia by Audley Farm Equine out of the multiple graded stakes winning Najran mare Snow Top Mountain, and sold for $100,000 to Michele Boghossian/Triple B Farms through Brookdale Sales’ consignment to the 2016 Keeneland September yearling sale.

This article appeared in February 28th.

Richmond OTBs To Offer Free Race Programs During March Madness

The Virginia Equine Alliance’s two Off Track Betting Centers in Richmond will celebrate their own version of “March Madness” with a special free program promotion in the month of March.

The OTBs at Breakers Sports Grille (in the west end) and Ponies & Pints (downtown) will participate on Wednesdays and Thursdays respectively. Customers at Breakers will receive free track past performance programs from Gulfstream, Tampa Bay Downs, Turf Paradise and Dover Downs every Wednesday beginning March 7th. Horseplayers at Ponies & Pints will receive free programs from Gulfstream, Fair Grounds, Santa Anita and Dover Downs every Thursday beginning March 8th.

Horseplayers at Breakers can get free Gulfstream, Tampa Bay, Turf Paradise & Dover Downs programs every Wednesday in March

In April, the promotion will switch away from weekday giveaways to weekends instead, when major Kentucky Derby prep races like the Santa Anita Derby, Wood Memorial, Toyota Bluegrass Stakes and Arkansas Derby are held. Later in the month, programs for the $1.2 million Charles Town Classic will be included in the giveaway.

Ponies & Pints, located in the Shockoe Bottom entertainment district, has daily Happy Hour specials from 11 AM – 7 PM.

The promotion will save horseplayers up to $6 on each visit when the program offer occurs. Customers normally pay $1.50 for each track program through a kiosk. Programs included in the giveaway will be pre-printed.

Virginia Lawmakers Warm Up To New Betting Machines

The following is an Associated Press article.

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia lawmakers may permit new betting machines at a once-popular horse racetrack after years of batting down pro-gambling measures.

The General Assembly is advancing legislation to allow historical race terminals at Colonial Downs, a recently shuttered horse track about 30 miles outside of Richmond. The legislation would allow for machines that let people bet on past horse races without knowing which horse they are betting on.

Gambling-related legislation has usually faced a tough path in the GOP-controlled General Assembly. But Republicans now control fewer seats after last year’s election and some lawmakers who have previously voted against pro-gambling bills say they’ve had a change of heart.

“I guess for the first time ever, I’m going to make an exception,” Republican Sen. Dick Black, one of the legislature’s most outspoken social conservatives, said at a recent committee hearing.

The House has already approved the measure, which is now being considered in the Senate.

Supporters say the legislation is needed to revive the state’s equine industry and help reopen Colonial Downs, which closed in 2014. Revolutionary Racing, based in Chicago, has been in negotiations to buy the track.

The legislation would establish “historical horse racing” as a form of horse racing that would allow bettors at Colonial Downs or satellite locations to place bets on races that have already been run.

Other states have seen similar measures aimed at helping their respective horse racing industries quickly lead to looser gambling laws. Maryland voters approved legalizing video slot machines at five locations a decade ago as a way to help its horse-racing industry. The law was subsequently amended and the gambling industry has exploded, with MGM Resorts International recently opening a Las Vegas-like $1.4 billion casino just outside the nation’s capital.

Republican Del. Michael Webert, the Virginia bill’s sponsor, said his legislation is a targeted approach that’s not meant to promote a wholesale expansion of gambling in the state. He said historical horse racing betting is different from slot machines because there is some skill involved. Webert said bettors wouldn’t know the horse they are betting on, but would have information on odds and could place different types of bets, like on horses to win-place-show.

“If you know something about horse racing, you’ll probably be a little bit better off,” he said.

But social conservative groups dispute there’s any meaningful difference with slot machines and said the legislation will eventually lead to casinos in Virginia.

“Once we go down that road, it doesn’t stop,” said the Rev. Eddy Aliff, who represents the Virginia Assembly of Independent Baptists.

Sen. Louise Lucas, a Democrat who has long advocated for opening a casino in Virginia, said she hopes that’s true.

“That’s kind of the camel’s nose under the tent,” she said, adding that she saw little difference between machines that allow historical horse race betting and slots.

“They can say whatever they want, I like what they did,” she said, adding that she hopes the legislation opens the door to more types of gambling being approved in the “not in the too distance future.”

Jockey Club Releases 2018 Fact Book

The Jockey Club announced today that the 2018 edition of the Fact Book is available in the Resources section of its website. You can find it here.

The online Fact Book is a statistical and informational guide to Thoroughbred breeding, racing and auction sales in North America. It also features a directory of Canadian, international, national, and state organizations.

Links to the Breeding Statistics report that is released by The Jockey Club each September and the Report of Mares Bred information that is published by The Jockey Club each October can be found in the Breeding section of the Fact Book.

The 2018 editions of State Fact Books, which feature detailed breeding, racing and auction sales information specific to numerous states, Canadian provinces, and Puerto Rico, are also available on The Jockey Club website. The State Fact Books are updated monthly.

The Jockey Club, founded in 1894 and dedicated to the improvement of Thoroughbred breeding and racing, is the breed registry for North American Thoroughbreds. In fulfillment of its mission, The Jockey Club, directly or through subsidiaries, provides support and leadership on a wide range of important industry initiatives, and it serves the information and technology needs of owners, breeders, media, fans and farms.

Secretariat Birthday Celebration Scheduled For March 23-25 At The Meadow

MARCH 23-25
Event will also pay tribute to Penny Chenery and Charlie Davis

The 45th anniversary of Secretariat’s historic Triple Crown will be the central theme of the annual Secretariat Birthday Celebration at the Virginia Horse Festival at The Meadow Event Park March 23-25. Of the 12 horses to win the Triple Crown since its inception in 1919, only Virginia-born Secretariat broke all three track records, which are still standing at this time.

The highlight of the celebration will be the “Triple Crown Tribute” on Saturday evening March 24 in Meadow Hall mansion. Acclaimed sports journalist Steve Haskin, who chronicled Secretariat’s racing career, will share personal photos and stories about “Big Red” and his stablemate Riva Ridge.  He will be joined by Steve Jordan, assistant to Secretariat’s trainer Lucien Laurin, who will share his own experiences during that unforgettable Triple Crown era.

Author/speaker Kate Chenery Tweedy will offer a special tribute to her mother, Penny Chenery, Secretariat’s beloved owner, and to Charlie Davis, Secretariat’s irrepressible exercise rider. Mrs. Chenery passed away September 16, 2017 at the age of 95. Mr. Davis died February 7, 2018 at age 78. Ms. Tweedy will share her personal stories as well as two memorial videos produced by filmmaker John Tweedy, her brother. Tweedy is co-author of the award-winning book “Secretariat’s Meadow –The Land, The Family, The Legend” with Leeanne Meadows Ladin.

The evening will also feature a Silent Auction of rare Meadow Stable items to benefit the Historic Barn Restoration Fund at The Meadow.

In addition to the “Triple Crown Tribute,” the birthday celebration will include:

• VIP Tram Tours of the historic barns
• Visits with Groundshaker, the great-great granddaughter of Secretariat and the last race horse bred and raced by Penny Chenery
• Narrated tours of Meadow Hall showcasing the Meadow Champion Galleries, Triple Crown Room and the Chenery Collection of rare Meadow Stable memorabilia
• An extensive selection of official Secretariat merchandise in the Exhibit Hall, along with autograph signings by the Secretariat team

At the Virginia Horse Festival, fans can enjoy three days of equine exhibitions and demonstrations; a parade of breeds; special events; 60,000 square feet of indoor shopping for all horse lovers, and much more. For ticket information and the complete schedule, please see

For fans who may not be able to attend the Secretariat Birthday Celebration, The Meadow offers the Secretariat Birthplace Tours year-round by reservation.  Book your tour here. 

Longtime Breeder and Former VTA Board Member, Pat Schuler, Passes Away

Patricia Schuler, 82, of Keswick, passed away on February 19, 2018.

Patricia was born on July 29, 1935, in Portland, Maine, to the late Robert W. Reilly and Allene Sacco Reilly. She attended Holy Names Academy and St Rose College in Albany, NY. Pat’s love and passion for animals led her to serve as vice president of the Derry N.H. S.P.C.A and later held a position as a board member with the Virginia Thoroughbred Association (V.T.A). Pat was instrumental in bringing horse racing to Virginia. She was devoted to breeding thoroughbreds in support of the Virginia bred program.

She was a devoted mother who raised six wonderful children who she loved with all of her heart. Her pride and joys were her children and grandchildren. Her happiest moments were those when the family gathered at the farm.

In addition to her parents, Patricia was preceded in death by her son, Kevin Kennedy Schuler, her brother John E. Reilly, and her sister, Roberta Jordan.

Patricia is survived by her husband of 58 years, Edward Schuler. She leaves behind five children, Deborah Fiscaletti (Mark) of Florida, Robin Durkin (Sean) of Keswick, Christopher Schuler (Donna) of Ivy, Cailin Collier (Andy) of Keswick, and Matthew Schuler of California; 10 grandchildren, 2 great grandchildren, and her beloved canine, Murphy.

A mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, February 23, 2018, at 1:00 pm, at Holy Comforter Catholic Church in Charlottesville, VA. A graveside service will follow the mass at Holly Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends on Thursday, February 22, 2018, from 6:00 – 8:00 pm, at Teague Funeral Service in Charlottesville.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made in honor of Pat to the Virginia Thoroughbred Association (V.T.A) or The Cancer Center at Martha Jefferson Hospital.

2018 Annual Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference Equine Session Announced

2018 Annual Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference Equine Session Announced

The 2018 Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference, the region’s premier animal nutrition conference, will be held April 4-5, 2018 at the Delta Hotels Baltimore Hunt Valley in Hunt Valley, MD.  Two days of expert speakers have been lined up with the Equine Session held on the second day featuring seminars devoted to equine feed ingredients and discussion of natural or organic feed components.  Veterinarians, students, horse trainers, horse breeders, and horse owners should not miss this opportunity to learn about exciting new discoveries related to their equine health and nutrition.  All attendees will receive lunch and the opportunity to ask questions of all of the experts.  Pre-registration with an early bird rate are available before March 15th and can be done online at:

2018 Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference – Equine Session Schedule

Thursday, April 5, 2018


Natural and Organic Trends in Horse Feeds

Dr. Preston Buff, PhD, PAS, Dipl ACAN


Ingredients in Feeds and Processing of Ingredients

Dr. Stephen Duren, Performance Horse Nutrition

Sponsored by Poulin Grain


What Goes Into a Feed Tag

Dr. Ashley Wagner, Probiotech


Genetic Engineering for Sustainable Food and Fiber Production: Separating the Myths from Reality

Dr. Troy L. Ott, Penn State University


Holistic Healthcare for Horses: Science or Sales Pitch?

Dr. Mark Crisman, Virginia Tech


Panel discussion and Q/A with speakers

The conference is hosted by the Maryland Feed Industry Council, University of Maryland, Pennsylvania State University, University of Delaware, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Rutgers University, American Feed Industry Association, and the United States Department of Agriculture.

For more information on the entire conference, please visit our website at

For information on sponsoring this event, please contact Jennifer Reynolds at 301-405-1547.

Yearling Futurity Bonuses Announced For Top Racetrack Money Earners

Virginia-bred horses that competed in the 2015 Yearling Futurity will share a bonus pool of $5,000 based on career earnings they accumulated through their recently completed three-year-old racing campaigns. The top earners in order were Speed Gracer ($3,000), Limehouse Louie ($1,000), Scarlett’s Ransom ($700) and Fly E Dubai ($300).

Speed Gracer wins a maiden special weight race at Laurel in October, 2016. Photo by Jim McCue.

Speed Gracer, bred and owned by Quest Realty, bankrolled $76,933 through December 31st last year. The now 4 year old Lemon Drop Kid gelding has a pair of wins, one second and two third place finishes from a dozen starts. The Susan Cooney trainee began his career with a sixth in the 2016 Jamestown Stakes and followed that with a maiden special weight triumph. This past year, Speed Gracer took third in both the Edward Evans and Hansel Stakes, and second in the Bert Allen Stakes. His other win was an allowance score at Laurel September 9th. Of his twelve starts, ten have been at Laurel while the other pair have been allowance races at Churchill and Keeneland. Speed Gracer is out of the Mr. Greeley mare, Sister Graceful, and is ridden regularly by J.D. Acosta.

Limehouse Louie wins the 2016 Jamestown Stakes. Photo by Jim McCue.

Limehouse Louie has bankrolled $72,904 from 11 starts including a pair of “in the money” finishes in Virginia-bred stakes. Bred by Carlos S.E. Moore and Gillian Gordon-Moore, the Limehouse gelding kicked off his career by capturing a maiden special weight race at Charles Town in July, 2016. He followed with a victory in that year’s Jamestown Stakes, then took third in 2017’s White Oak Farm and Meadow Stable Stakes. He also finished fifth in the Punch Line Stakes this past fall. Seven of his lifetime outs have been in stakes company. Owned by the Wildcard Stable and trained by Flint Stites, Limehouse Louie is out of Mystic Bay by Housebuster.

Scarlett’s Ransom has captured her 4th race of 2017 November 19th at Laurel. Photo courtesy of Jim McCue.

Scarlett’s Ransom is the third highest money earner and top winning horse from that 2015 class. The Denis of Cork filly has bankrolled $62,619 and has reached the winner’s circle five times in 16 starts. She was bred by Nancy Rizer and Eric Rizer and is owned by the latter. She won her first race in December, 2016 in a maiden claimer at Laurel and her wins since have all been in claiming company. The John Robb trainee is out of the Grand Slam mare, Moosette.

Fly E Dubai earned a win in his first lifetime start in November, 2016 at Laurel. Photo by Jim McCue.

Fly E Dubai, fourth in earnings with $51,532, is another bred by Carlos and Gillian Moore. The E Dubai gelding has only one win, but has the most top three finishes out of these five bonus earners. Owner/trainer Jerry Thurston’s charge captured her lifetime bow at Laurel and has since split time there, at Presque Isle and Parx. Fly E Dubai has been consistent in Virginia-bred stakes with a fourth in the White Oak Farm, a fifth in the Meadow Stable and third in the Punch Line Stakes. He is out of Senate Caucus by Siphon.

Four Virginia-Breds Score Recent Wins At Charles Town; Stormin Margaret Makes Successful 70th Career Start

Four Virginia-bred horses recently reached the winner’s circle at Charles Town including a consistent mare that was making her 70th career start.

Storming Margaret, an 8 year old Here’s Zealous mare, made her 70th start quite memorable in kicking off the month. She came four wide from fourth in the final turn of her $10,000 claiming race to nip Mrs. Sport by a neck at the wire and record her 12th victory. Bred by Rodger Smith, Stormin Margaret has been a model of consistency in her career. She has 15 runner-up finishes to go with 13 thirds, and has recorded 31 consecutive “top five” finishes, a streak that goes back over 2 1/2 years. Her career earnings stand at $175,905. She is out of the Smoke Glacken mare, Storm in Philly.

Stormin Margaret earned win number 12 from start number 70 in early February. Photo courtesy of Coady Photography.

Max James orchestrated a nice comeback to reach the winner’s circle at Charles Town early in the month. The 4 year old Union Rags gelding was ninth at the halfway mark of his 1 1/8th miles claimer amongst a field of ten before stepping up. He advanced to seventh at the third fraction, though still nearly ten lengths off the pace, before a huge rally. Max James crossed 2 1/2 lengths to the best in 1:56.46.  He was bred by Audley Farm, is out of Pink Champagne by Awesome Again, and has now earned $40,940 from 14 starts.


Despite being bumped at the start, Max James prevailed at Charles Town. Photo courtesy of Coady Photography.

Girlwthewrngtattoo authored a gate to wire effort at the West Virginia oval for owner/breeder Donna  Hayes. The 4 year old daughter of Fiber Sonde beat runner-up Charitable Bound by 1 3/4 lengths in her $24,000, 6 1/2 furlong allowance. She is out of the Housebuster mare, Miss Morgana and has $36,700 in winnings from 7 starts.

Girlwthewrngtattoo went gate to wire in a $24,000 allowance raced at Charles Town. Photo courtesy of Coady Photography.

Braxton was the most recent Charles Town victor, connecting on Valentine’s Day in a $24,500 allowance sprint. Sent off as the betting favorite, the 4 year old Peak Dancer gelding trailed early in the 4 1/2 furlong event, got to within 1 1/2 lengths of the leader at the top of the stretch and within 1/16th of the finish, finally gained control. Braxton crossed in :52.66, 3 1/4 lengths the best. Owned and bred by the Eagle Point Farm in Ashland, the Javier Contreras trainee won for the third time in six career outings. He is out of Toccoa by Purple Comet.

Other recent Virginia-bred triumphs occurred at Tampa Bay Downs, Gulfstream and Laurel.

Black Prong, owned and bred by Sarah Nagle and trained by Reid Nagle, came back from ninth at the half in his one mile, $14,700 claimer at Tampa to win by a half length over Indy Forest. The 4 year old Wiseman’s Ferry gelding rallied inside early in the stretch then went outside late. Out of Talented Nut by Horse Chestnut, Black Prong has finished out of the money just once in his eight career starts. He has bankrolled $37,330.

Gamer Girl collected her first lifetime win at Gulfstream in a six furlong, $21,000 maiden claimer. The 4 year old Jersey Town filly went gate to wire in 1:12.27 and crossed 1 1/4 lengths the best. She is out of the Meadowlake mare, Speedwell, and was bred by Morgan’s Ford Farm. In her last three starts, all at Gulfstream, she has a pair of seconds and a win.

Porte Cochere’s win at Laurel gave the 5 year old 6 in 24 starts. Photo by Jim McCue.

Porte Cochere, bred by Legacy Farm and Larry Johnson, prevailed in a $15,000 claiming sprint at Laurel. The 5 year old Street Sense mare won for the sixth time. She had 12 “in the money” finishes in 24 starts before finishing sixth earlier this week. She is out of the Partner’s Hero mare, Wonderous Woman.

A Virginia owned Kentucky-bred horse also was victorious at Laurel this past week. Rumor Ridge made her second lifetime start and collected her first win — by 4 1/2 lengths — for the Burning Daylight Farms and trainer Ferris Allen. The three year old Yes It’s True filly, who did not race as a two year old, beat ten others in a $40,000 maiden special weight race.

Kentucky-bred Rumor Ridge, shown winning at Laurel February 9th, is owned by Burning Daylight farms of Virginia. Photo by Jim McCue.

In recent stakes competition, Virginia-bred One Go All Go competed in his first Grade I event — the Gulfstream Park Turf Stakes — and did quite respectably. The 6 year old horse finished fourth but only lost by 1 3/4 lengths. Bred by Albert Coppola, the solid outing enabled One Go All Go’s bankroll to surge over the $400,000 mark.

Tyfosha, a three year old filly bred by Lazy Lane Farms, also took fourth in a stakes at Oaklawn — the $125,000 Martha Washington. She has now bankrolled $86,050 from just five races.