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Summit Priorities To Be Addressed

Published: July 24, 2015 3:31 pm ET

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United States Trotting Association Executive Vice President Mike Tanner is working with staff members and pertinent stakeholders on activities of greatest priority, as voted on by Summit participants, in increasing foal crops and the number of horse owners.

The summit was held in Columbus, Ohio, on July 13 and focused upon foal crop and ownership issues.

“We’ll take the message of our recent summit participants to those in a position to make a change that we anticipate will show improvement in the target areas,” said Tanner. “There was unanimous sentiment that a shift in purse offerings to provide incentives for racing young, untested horses would yield an upturn in the breeding industry. We will be taking that message to both Harness Horsemen International and North American Harness Racing Secretaries, Inc.”

Education, in reproductive technology and husbandry practices, is also a priority.

“Nationally, we have a conversion rate of about 60 per cent of mares bred to foals registered,” said Tanner. “However, there’s wide variation in that percentage between breeders. We have more resources to reach our members now than ever before and we plan to use them to empower all breeders, whether they have one horse or 100, to help their mares conceive and carry a healthy foal and raise that foal to be a commercially viable racehorse.”

The USTA will also team up with tracks, horsemen and pertinent stakeholders to educate those considering first-time purchase of a Standardbred. The first such event is planned as a four-hour workshop on September 12 at the Goshen (NY) Yearling Sale. For more information, or to sign up, contact Chris Tully at [email protected] or call 845-807-7538.

Planning is underway for the next summit, to concentrate on pari-mutuel wagering issues, that will be scheduled during the first quarter of 2016.


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