ThoroFan Feature Articles will present interesting, educational or insightful themes that Thoroughbred racing fans want. They might be very serious articles submitted by industry professionals, discussion of technical aspects of our sport by knowledgeable racing fans or something more light-hearted that makes us all better appreciate being a Thoroughbred racing fan. And yes, they may even be fictional short stories. But, be sure, we will tell you when they are. Enjoy!
TEN QUESTIONS 05-03-2013 -- ThoroFan is inaugurating a special feature,entitled, "Ten Questions." It will be written by guest ThoroFan writers introducing us to interesting racing folks from their local tracks or region. First up, Heather Seiden, ThoroFan Board member from California visits with David Jerkens, Racing Secretary at Golden Gate Fields. David,also, gives Thorofan his favorite to win the Kentucky Derby.
LEADERSHIP ON MEDICATION USE -- Eight mid-Atlantic states have joined together to unify medication use at racetracks in their states. Other states are encouraged to join them with the hopes for a national agreement.
AN ANATOMY OF HORSE RACE HANDICAPPING 11-01-2012 -- Saratoga ThoroFan member, Jean Chodkowski, has written a great book for new racing fans. It is available in both paper back and e-book. Great holiday gift for the new fan on your gift list.
FUTURE OF RACING BEGINS IN NEW YORK 10-14-2012 -- Following an extensive review of the fatalities and injuries at Aqueduct Race Track in New York, a report came-out which is highly critical of the New York Racing Association,Inc. It has been followed by a number of significant changes in racing regulations for New York. Will they make a difference. Time will tell!
Award winning photographer Arthur Frank offers us 168 exhilarating photographs of Thoroughbred racing. His work spans this exciting sport in the United States, France and Ireland.
Joe Drape, New York Times sportswriter, insightfullyintroduces us to how these photographs capture the beauty and excitement of one of the world’s most popular sports. We find ourselves gifted with the opportunity to experience the essence of the Thoroughbred as they grow into race horses from their days as foals, through training sessions, and then to their athletic and competitive lives at the track .
This book highlights the unique relationships between the horses and those individuals who breed them, own them, train them, care for them, ride them and bet on them. Our photographer, a true fan of the sport and the horse, offers a unique humanistic depiction of the ‘sport of kings’ and concludes with a tribute to the winners and the losers, as every fan of this sport is truly a winner.
Arthur Frank is a sports photographer who has been photographing equine sports and activities for over twenty years. His previous photography book was ‘Cowboy up’.He now lives in New York City.
Joe Drape is an award-wining sportswriter for the New York Times who has also written a number of books on horse racing and football. He also lives in New York City.
TRADITION OF CHEATING 03-16-2012 -- Although a harsh title for a book, "The Tradition of Cheating at The Sport of Kings by Glenn Thompson, takes the gloves off in a bear-knucking assault on the inside of Thoroughbred racing. Although it is a rough attack, some points are well made. The book is available from for Kindle on Amazon. Check out the reviews by people who ahve read the book and see if it the book for you.
TIME TO CHANGE THE STRUCTURE OF RACING 09-12-2011 -- Many have voiced their proposals to save Thoroughbred racing. Even the Jockey Club has taken a swing at it by engaging the prestigious firm of McKinsey and Company to make recomendations. Fred Pope a noted writer, philosopher and businessman has offered his unique proposal. Unlike most others, Pope's proposal changes the paradigm that has guided racing for the past century. The read is long but interesting and provacative. You may find the journey worthwhile.
Stories are often so easily forgotten. Not this one. More than a glimpse - this journal exposes the truth and the life. It tells it as it is for those who work to save horseracing by offering the experience through shared ownership. It is the experience that truly makes and keeps fans. The experience is the horse and the horse’s journey to live as the athlete he was born to be. This experience gives reason to stay close and to partner in his highs and lows as he has always done for us.
A MORNING JOY NOT TO BE MISSED 07-30-2011 -- Watching morning workouts is an institution at Saratoga Race Course. Unfortunate, all tracks to not promote the joy. Rosemarie Cola, a ThoroFan-Monmouth Chapter member writes about the experience missed by many fans.
Dr. DeLuke is a ThoroFan member and supporter. ThoroFan's Board of Director member, Barry Bornstein, has credits for a number of photographs used in the book. Click on the title for a synopsis of the book and a number of critical review commnets.
YOU GOTTA LOVE THIS SPORT 07-26-2011 -- ThoroFan Monmouth Chapter member,Rosemarie Cola,journals about her expereicne during a day at Monmouth Park which featured the United Nation's Stakes. It is always a good day when a horse you have been following scores an upset. This is especially true when you told all your friends about the winner.
Draft Interstate Racing and Wagering Compact 06-03-2011 -- Interstate Compact Legislation is moving through many state legislatures. Six states are needed to sign on to the compact to enact it nationally. Kentucky was the first state to sign on. Four other states including New York are considering the legislation.
THE CHALLENGE IN NEW YORK IS REBUILDING THE FAN BASE 04-28-2011 -- The Capitol, a newspaper for and about New York State Goverment, asked four people with different perspectives to "sound-off" about Thoroughbred racing in New York. Among them was Michael Amo, Chairman of ThoroFan, who focused on the importance of promoting racing for its entertainment value and rebuilding the fan base in New York. Read all of the interviews by clicking on the above headline.
“Sailing by, eight feet high on horses quick as dreams”
THE JOCKEYS’ STORY (Tommy Luther and Sandy Graham)
This is a true story. The horses sailed by ‘quick as dreams’. I watched the crowd roar as horses thundered across the finish. Fans were sitting, standing, jumping, cheering or cursing and throwing tickets on the ground. As always, it was a grand day at the track.
Each race racetrack has its own unique characteristics. Comparing one to another is much like comparing apples and oranges. Yet ThoroFan believes it is important to try to understand which tracks are the most track friendly. We began this effort with a visit to Gulfstream in January and wrote about our experience. In mid-april we took-in Oaklawn Park. Last weekend we ventured to historic Keeneland Racetrack for the Coolmore Lexington Stakes. Clink the above heading for our view of Keeneland. A review of Oaklawn Park will be posted next week. Please let us know your thoughts on our reviews and if you would be willing to write a review of your local track. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fans Are the Future of Racing -- With the Thoroughbred racing industry and sport in dire straits, racing leaders may be too focused on the short term. Although handle is critical to survival, erosion of the fan-base is the root cause of the problem.
Medication Use: A Fan’s Need to Know -- The Racetrack Medication and Testing Consortium introduces to racing fans a wonderful new tool, "Recent Rulings Database." Now when a fan comes across a medication while handicapping or reading an article in an industry publication they will have a quick resource to learn more about that medication.
ThoroFan Book Review -- Michael Amo ThoroFan member and author of six fiction books,Jerry Radford,has woven an amazing tale of crime, romance and racing. Set in the Maryland racing circuit,One After Another" is a must read for a racing fan. Read my review.
-- Below are ARCHIVED ARTICLES FROM THE THOROFAN VOICE - 2008 - 2009
SURF & TURF......IT'S FAN-tastic 09-15-2008 -- Word and Pictures by Dennis Hogan - ThoroFan Voice What's better than the beach under a warm September sun, steak sandwiches, homemade peach pie, a midafternoon massage, and an invigorating dive into the cool Atlantic? Well, few things I'd say. But try telling that to any on of the 17,000 that converged upon Monmouth Park this past Saturday for the inaugural running of the half-million dollar Monmouth Stakes. If anyone thinks this game lacks heroes or fans then they better get their head out of the sand, for they were both in attendance-it's no wonder the beaches were empty.
A 'BIG APPLE' FOR THE TEACHER 09-30-2008 -- Words & Pictures by Dennis G. Hogan - ThoroFan Voice Summer's over, the leaves are changing and the kids are back in school - hopefully working hard and getting good grades. Speaking of which, I'm giving NYRA straight A's for putting together a card featuring not one, but five back-to-back Grade I's. On this Saturday in Sept. - Class was certainly in session!
ALL IN THE CARDS 11-28-2008 -- Words & Pictures by Dennis G. Hogan - ThoroFan Voice "You have to throw your heart into it. You have to live it," advises Scott Van Laer, a 35-year-old Thoroughbred breeder whose Glenlaer Farm is but an owl's call from Lake Placid. Together, with his wife Michale, two small children, and a few mares he's set up a base camp that heralds the Empire State's success with Thoroughbreds. Horses are Scott's passion but he kept his day job.
All photos on the Thoroughbred Racing Fan Association website are copyright images and may not by reproduced or used in any way without the express written permission of the Thoroughbred Racing Fan Association,Inc..