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Report from July 2017 NM Racing Commission Meeting
RSS Feeds Wednesday, August 2, 2017
The New Mexico Racing Commission held its monthly meeting at Ruidoso Downs Racetrack on its headquarters at SunRay Park Racetrack and Casino on Thursday, July 13.
New Mexico Horse Breeders’ Association executive director Anna Fay Davis gave the commission the final race-a-day report for the 36-day SunRay Park meet, which ran April 18-June 19 in Farmington. During the SunRay meet, the track carded 99 New Mexico-bred races, 54 for Thoroughbreds and 45 for Quarter Horses. By comparison, SunRay Park carded 83 state-bred races -- 44 for Thoroughbreds and 39 for Quarter Horses, during its 2016 season, which was also a 36-day meet.
An average of 2.75 New Mexico-bred races per day were run during the 2017 SunRay Park meet, an increase of 19 percent over the 2.31 state-bred races per day during the track’s 2016 season.
Also, during the SunRay Park season, a total of 476 New Mexico-breds competed in open overnight races, of which 168 (35 percent) finished first, second, or third. Of this total, 85 were Thoroughbreds and 83 were Quarter Horses. Bonuses totaling $85,128.10 were paid to the owners of these horses.
Ms. Davis added that, during the SunRay meet, the track carded 88 New Mexico-bred overnight races.
“There were 719 New Mexico-breds that were scheduled to participate in these races,” she reported. “This is an average of 8.17 New Mexico-breds per race.”
Ms. Davis also gave the commission the race-a-day report for the first 24 days of the Ruidoso Downs meet, which opened May 26. During this period, the track carded 92 New Mexico-bred races, 53 for Thoroughbreds and 39 for Quarter Horses. By comparison, Ruidoso carded 90 state-bred races -- 51 for Thoroughbreds and 39 for Quarter Horses -- during the first 24 days of its 2016 season.
An average of 3.83 New Mexico-bred races per day have been run during the first 24 days of the 2017 Ruidoso Downs meet, an increase of 2.1 percent over the 3.75 state-bred races per day during the first 24 days of the track’s 2016 season.
Also, during the first eight days of the Ruidoso meet, a total of 47 New Mexico-breds competed in open overnight races, of which 18 (38 percent) finished first, second, or third. Of this total, 15 were Thoroughbreds and three were Quarter Horses. Bonuses totaling $7,641.40 were paid to the owners of these horses.
Ms. Davis added that, during the first 24 days of the Ruidoso meet, the track carded 76 New Mexico-bred overnight races.
“There were 547 New Mexico-breds that were scheduled to participate in these races,” she said. “This is an average of 7.2 New Mexico-breds per race.”
Finally, Ms. Davis gave the commission the race-a-day report for the first six days of the Albuquerque Downs meet, which opened June 24. During this period, the track carded 24 New Mexico-bred races, 16 for Thoroughbreds and eight for Quarter Horses. By comparison, the track carded 33 state-bred races -- 23 for Thoroughbreds and 10 for Quarter Horses -- during the first six days of its 2016 season.
An average of 4 New Mexico-bred races per day have been run during the first six days of the 2017 Albuquerque Downs meet, an increase of 9 percent over the 3.67 state-bred races per day during first nine days of the track’s 2016 season.
Ms. Davis added that, during the first six days of the Albuquerque meet, the track carded 23 New Mexico-bred races.
“There were 207 New Mexico-breds that were scheduled to participate in these races,” she said. “This is an average of 9 New Mexico-breds per race.”

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During his presentation to the commission, New Mexico Horsemen’s Association (www.newmexicohorsemen.com) executive director Pat Bingham gave commissioners a copy of the ad the NMHA ran in the most recent edition of the NMHBA’s quarterly magazine, the New Mexico Horse Breeder. Also, Mr. Bingham reported that during the 2016 Zia Park meet, which opens on September 9, a patron will be selected at random to be the NMHA’s guest at a table during the races.
The NMHA is also planning an all-committees meeting to discuss purses and handle. This meeting will be held after the regular State Board meeting on Wednesday, August 16. Mr. Bingham also told commissioners that the University of New Mexico economics department has completed the form for its economic impact study of the horse industry on the state.
“They’ve told us that they need at least a 25 percent response for the data to be considered valid,” Mr. Bingham said. “It’s very important that everyone involved in the horse industry in our state participate in this survey.”
Mr. Bingham also requested to Ruidoso Downs president and general manager Shaun Hubbard that the NMHA be provided a table during the New Mexico-Bred Sale, August 18-19, and the Ruidoso Select Yearling Sale, September 1-3. This would allow the association to distribute promotional materials and provide information to people at both sales.
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Commission executive director Ismael “Izzy” Trejo reported that Melody Ryan will rejoin the NMRC staff as an investigator on July 17. He also said that seven investigators from other states were part of the enforcement team during the Rainbow Futurity and Derby trials, held at Ruidoso Downs July 7-9. the investigators were sponsored by the American Quarter Horse Association.
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Also at the meeting:
*The commission ratified the simulcast schedules for the state’s five racetracks.
*The commission approved Pasquale “Patrick” Bovenzi to replace Martin Hamilton on the board of stewards at Albuquerque Downs, effective August 1. Mr. Bovenzi has previously served as a state steward in Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Colorado, and he is an Accredited Flat Racing Level 1 official by the Racing Officials Accreditation Program.
*The commission ratified longtime racing official Randy Summers to serve on the commission’s Race Review Committee.
*The commission approved Sunland Park’s first condition book and its stall applications and nomination forms. Sunland Park opens its 72-day season on December 15.
The next New Mexico Racing Commission monthly meeting is scheduled for Thursday, August 17, at the commission headquarters in Albuquerque, beginning at 8:30 a.m. For more information, visit the commission's website at http://nmrc.state.nm.us, or call (505) 222-0700.


In The News

Wednesday, November 22, 2017
Nine stakes races, including two restricted to New Mexico-breds, were contested on Zia Park’s Wednesday’s “Land of Enchantment Day” program.
Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Two stakes for New Mexico-breds -- one for Thoroughbreds and one for Quarter Horses -- will be featured on Wednesday’s $1.303-million Land of Enchantment Day program at Zia Park.
Sunday, October 29, 2017
Jockeys Ry Eikleberry and Roimes Chirinos each rode the winners of two races during Sunday’s $2-million New Mexico Cup Day program at Zia Park.
Thursday, October 26, 2017
A total of 131 New Mexico-bred Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses has been entered in Sunday’s New Mexico Cup races at Zia Park. Purses for the 12 races -- eight for Thoroughbreds and four for Quarter Horses -- will exceed $2 million, once again making New Mexico Cup day the richest state- or province-bred day of racing in North America.




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