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MANALAPAN, NJ -- January 27, 2017 -- The Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey (SBOANJ) would like to clarify its involvement with the New Jersey Classic and Miss New Jersey stakes races, which the Meadowlands previously announced as being cancelled for 2017. At one time purses for the New Jersey Classic and Miss New Jersey were supported in part by the New Jersey Sires Stakes (NJSS). In a Nov. 20, 2009, letter to the SBOANJ, the NJSS advised that it was withdrawing its guaranteed support of the races. In 2009, the NJSS contributed $50,000 to the Classic and Miss New Jersey, but between 2010 and 2015 no payments were made to the races. The SBOANJ has been collecting nominating and sustaining payments for both the New Jersey Classic and Miss New Jersey to be put in the purses of the races. The SBOANJ has not contributed funding to the purses of the races. "The New Jersey Classic and Miss New Jersey were raced with short fields in 2016, with just five in the Classic and only four in the Miss New Jersey, which prompted the filly stake to be raced as a non-betting event. It appears that there would be fewer entries for this year." said SBOANJ president Mark Ford. EDITORS NOTE: This controversary came about from owner Howard Taylor's statement on Click here to view. by Courtney Stafford for the SBOANJ 

The Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey is pleased to announce that the Dancer and Smith trotting races as well as the New Jersey futurities will continue to be raced in the future. In spite of a limited number of nominations, we believe we have an obligation to the harness racing owners, breeders and trainers to provide them with an opportunity to race in New Jersey, both now and in the future. Unfortunately, the NJ Classic and Miss NJ are being suspended until further notice.  Careful consideration was given to this decision by both the Meadowlands and the SBOA.  Hopefully, these races will be restored in the future. ...................................................................... In an effort to incentivize breeding and boarding in New Jersey, the SBOANJ announces the continuation in 2017 of the New Jersey stallion breeding rebate program and the rebate program for resident mares. The stallion rebate program, FOR NEW JERSEY PACING STALLIONS ONLY, will issue a 50% rebate of the paid stud fee (up to $3,000) to the owner of a mare who resides in New Jersey for 150 days. A 25% rebate of the paid stud fee (up to $1,500) will be paid to a non-resident mare. Stallions must be enrolled in the USTA’s STARS program. The resident mares program will rebate the owner up to $500 for a mare who has been bred and resides in the state for 150 days. The stallion does not have to stand in New Jersey. ......................................................................... The deadline for anyone wanting to stand a stallion in New Jersey is January 1st. Registration forms are available on the SBOANJ’s website. As a reminder, the SBOA is offering a rebate of 50% of the paid stud fee (up to $3,000) for resident mares and 25% (up to $1,500) for non-resident mares. The rebate program is for pacing stallions only. The stallion must be enrolled in the USTA STAR program. Registration form    Courtney Stafford

MANALAPAN, NJ -- November 1, 2016 -- The Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey today launched two commercials urging voters to Vote Yes for the public ballot question that would allow casino gaming outside of Atlantic City. “The farmers, breeders, and members of SBOANJ need to convince the public that new casino revenue in New Jersey will help protect the equine industry and our overall quality of life,” said SBOANJ President Mark Ford. “We cannot sit back and let outside casino interests spread misinformation.” If the ballot question passes, the New Jersey Legislature could authorize two new casinos to be built in northern New Jersey. A percentage of the state tax revenue collected from the new casinos would be dedicated to supporting the horse racing industry. The first spot to air emphasizes that farms, open space, and thousands of jobs could be lost unless voters pass the ballot question. The second spot educates voters on the revenue that New York and Pennsylvania collect from casino patrons, thousands of which reside in northern New Jersey. “Although the polls show that passage of the ballot question is unlikely, the horsemen believe we still have to do everything we can to get our story out to the public,” said TrotPAC President Anthony Perretti. “We need financial support from various places to protect our industry.” The spots beginsairing on Friday, October 28thon various cable networks and will continue through November 8th. To view the commercials, visit or request a copy through the SBOANJ. Courtney Stafford 

MANALAPAN, NJ – October 14, 2016 – Harness racing drivers Yannick Gingras was elected to the Board of Directors of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey. Of the 758 members, 347 ballots were returned and counted on Friday October 14, 2016 by the accounting firm Drucker, Math & Whitman certified public accountants in North Brunswick, NJ. In one of the two contested categories – driver/trainer – Gingras received the most votes over incumbent Jacqueline Ingrassia and the other challenger Vincent Ginsburg. In the second contested category owners Anthony Perretti and Anthony Romano were both re-elected to another term.  The two incumbents were on the ballot with challenger Joe Jannuzzelli. In the uncontested breeders category Mike Klau and Mark Mullen were re-elected. This was Yannick Gingras’ first bid for a seat on the SBOANJ Board of Directors.  “I am happy to have been elected, I am looking forward to start working with those already in place on ways to get people in the stands and improve racing in New Jersey” said Gingras, who is currently top driver by earnings in North America. In other news reported from the annual SBOANJ meeting the board of directors took the opportunity to update members on the current status of the boards they chair. Anthony Romano Chairman of Insurance reported that the current status of the insurance account is in line to finish where it has been in the last few years.  Therefore, he does not foresee any increases to rates moving into 2017.  He also discussed the current alignment with the BCAP association, which recently opened its new medical trailer at Gaitway Farm.  The trailer is staffed by a Physician and Registered Nurse from Centra State and is currently open every other Friday to all members for medical needs. Chairman of Finance, Tom Pontone, discussed the benevolent fund payouts thus far, totaling $6,650.00 with a few more requests up for review. The benevolent fund has also been assisting a member navigate through the billing process and helping with claims while fighting cancer. Maritsa Quijada’Dill has been personally assisting this member in any way possible to help ease the financial burden during this difficult time.  The Benevolent Fund is available to help in more ways than simply awarding money if necessary. Mike Gulotta, treasurer, stated that the current conditions of the SBOANJ’s finances remain strong.  He made a point to mention the recent statements made by the Meadowlands that purses maybe cut in the upcoming winter meet.  If that does in fact happen, the SBOANJ income will drop and the budget will need to be reevaluated.  Gulotta assured all members that this was a matter that would continue to be monitored. Chairman of TrotPAC, Anthony Perretti updated all members on the grassroots campaign promoting the expansion of gaming in North Jersey. He played the two commercials that have been released to the public via social media, as well as appears on both the TrotPAC and SBOANJ’s websites.  Everyone is very happy with the response to the commercials as well as the amount of people they have reached on Facebook. The board held a closed-door meeting at the conclusion of the public meeting to further discuss campaign plans moving forward. Courtney Stafford Publicity Consultant SBOANJ 732-462-2357

MANALAPAN, NJ -- September 23, 2016 -- Despite the suspension of a statewide campaign to encourage residents to support casino gaming outside of Atlantic City, the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey today announced that it would continue its grassroots efforts to help pass the ballot question that could provide much needed revenue to bolster New Jersey's struggling harness racing horsemen. It's frustrating that the best financed advocates for casino gaming in North Jersey decided to pull the plug on their statewide campaign,' said Mark Ford, President of the SBOANJ. " Our members now must use our limited financial resources to drive the message to voters that a YES vote on Question 1 will provide our industry with additional revenue to continue offering the residents and taxpayers of New Jersey important entertainment and quality of life benefits. Even if others are stepping back from the fight, the horsemen have no choice but to step up and do our part." This November 8th, voters will choose whether to allow casino gaming outside of Atlantic City. If the ballot question passes, the New Jersey Legislature could authorize two new casinos to be built in northern New Jersey. A percentage of the state tax revenue collected from the new casinos would be dedicated to supporting the horse racing industry. The SBOANJ has scheduled series of media interviews, public appearances, and social media events to highlight the Association and the benefit its members bring to their towns and communities. Courtney Stafford

(MANALAPAN, NJ) – The Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey today hired national public relations powerhouse MWWPR to provide better messaging and strategic guidance as state voters are asked to vote this November in favor of a ballot question that could provide much needed revenue to the harness racing industry.  This November 8th, voters choose whether to allow casino gaming outside of Atlantic City.  If the ballot question passes, the New Jersey Legislature could authorize two new casinos to be built in northern New Jersey.  A percentage of the state tax revenue collected from the new casinos would be dedicated to supporting the horse racing industry. “MWWPR’s proven background in positive brand building and public relations strategies will be a valuable addition to our Association at this critical juncture,” said Mark Ford, President of the SBOANJ.  “With the very real possibility of new casino revenue coming to our horsemen, the team at MWWPR will help us leverage our assets and show how we provide critical entertainment and quality of life benefits to the residents and taxpayers of New Jersey.” MWWPR will be tasked with convincing the public to vote favorably for the ballot question through a series of public relations, media, and advertising events sanctioned by SBOANJ.  Additionally, the firm also will highlight individual Association members and the benefit they bring to their towns and communities. “The horsemen are a vital part of the historic fabric of New Jersey,” said Brian Hague, Vice President of MWWPR.  “This campaign will do everything to get their story told and ensure that the Legislature provides the financial support necessary to protect this industry.” The MWWPR public relations campaign for the SBOANJ will begin September 6. Al Ochsner  

MANALAPAN, NJ – August 22, 2016 – On one of the biggest harness racing nights in Pennsylvania three of the final winners were bred in New Jersey,  the Garden State. The $500,000 Battle of the Brandywine was taken by the Fair Winds Farm bred three year old pacing colt Betting Line in an dominate fashion. The Ontario sired colt was bred and raised by Fair Winds Farm in Cream Ridge. Betting Line has won 9 of his 10 starts in 2016 and has lifetime earnings of over 1.3 million dollars. Southwind Farms of Pennington bred Southwind Frank. The three-year-old colt trotter bounced back from his second place finish in the Hambletonian to win the $500,000 Colonial. The New Jersey bred son of Muscle Hill has a lifetime mark of 1:52.1 and lifetime earnings of over 1.6 million dollars. Darlinonthebeach took the $350,000 Valley Forge final for three-year-old filly pacers. Bred in Allentown by White Birch Farms, Darlinonthebeach is on a winning streak for the month of August with three wins in a row. The Pennsylvania sired filly has won 8 of 13 starts in 2016. Courtney Stafford

MANALAPAN, NJ -- July 8, 2016 -- The Anthony Abbatiello New Jersey Classic and the Thomas D'Altrui Miss New Jersey stakes races will be held on July 30,2016 at the Meadowlands. The estimated purses will be $145,000 for the Anthony Abbatiello NJ Classic and $85,000 for the Thomas D'Altrui Miss New Jersey. In addition the SBOANJ has announced that they will reimburse the starting fees to the 6-10th place finishers for both races. The draw will be held on Monday morning July 25, 2016. The following horses are eligible. 2016 Anthony Abbatiello NJ Classic All The Cookies Boston Red Rocks Dontcallmefrancis Ideal Rocky Katies Rocker Mad Mad World Road Block Rock N Roll Style Rock Power Rockefeller Roll N Catch Undrafted Winning Linc 2016 Thomas D'Altrui Miss New Jersey Blue Moon Stride Can'tgetenuffofyou Double Jeopardy Dreaming Silly Heart Of Glass JK Fannie Mymegarichmothrnlo N Angel Among Us On Top Of The Rock Place To Rocknroll Rock My Girl Rocknroll Fan Rocknroll Vision Rollatown Please contact the SBOA at 732-462-2357 or the Meadowlands Race Office at 201-842-5130 if you have any questions. by Courtney Stafford, for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - July 1, 2016 - Al Ochsner takes on a new role with the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey as the Interim Executive Administrator. A director since 2005, Al recently served as treasurer and first vice president of the association. Al was appointed to replace the late Leo McNamara. After receiving a BA in marketing and economics, Al operated his own multi-phase market research company, Schrader Research, for over 50 years. Al has been involved in the Standardbred racing industry for over 45 years having the distinct pleasure to not only own, but also breed a number of champion racehorses. Al accepted the breeder of the year award for Horse of the Year, Precious Bunny, who was foaled and raised at Al's Windhaven Farm in Monroe Township, New Jersey. As an SBOANJ director, Al served on many committees. He also played a key role in establishing "Baby Races" at both Gaitway Farms and Showplace Farms. Al established the New Owners Seminars held at the Meadowlands and Freehold Racetrack and was co-chairman of the NJ Horse Alliance Symposium held at Monmouth Park Racetrack. With his long time expertise as a director and familiarity of the racing industry, Al Ochsner is an excellent match for this position and a strong asset to the SBOANJ team. From Courtney Stafford, for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ -- June 13, 2016 -- Leo C. McNamara III, a third generation harness racing horseman and executive administrator of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey (SBOANJ) for the past 15 years, died early Sunday morning, June 12. Mr. McNamara died of complications following a hard fought battle with cancer, just two weeks short of his 61st birthday. Born June 30, 1955, in Carmel, Ind., Mr. McNamara was the son of Leo McNamara Jr., whose father, Leo, founded Two Gaits Farm in Indiana, where Adios was foaled and the pacing stallion Hal Dale stood at stud. Leo C. McNamara was also a founder of the U.S. Trotting Association, the Hall of Fame of the Trotter in Goshen, N.Y., and at one time an owner of The Red Mile. The McNamara family moved east in the late 1950s and Mr. McNamara III spent some time as a youngster at Hanover Shoe Farms, where his father served as farm superintendent. The McNamara family returned to Carmel before selling the family farm and moving east again when Leo McNamara Jr. joined Pine Hollow Stud Farm in New York. While living in Pine Bush, N.Y., Mr. McNamara III began working on the Pine Hollow Stud Farm. After graduating from high school in 1973, he continued on at Pine Hollow Stud Farm, becoming an assistant manager. Mr. McNamara III moved to Kentucky's Bluegrass horse country and worked at Dan Hollibaugh's Holly Lane Stud in Lexington, serving as manager there from 1981-1985. Mr. McNamara's next stop was Almahurst, where he served as farm superintendent of the breeding nursery's flagship farm outside of Lexington during the era when it was one of the sport's showcase operations. Mr. McNamara III left Almahurst in 1988 to run the new Dreamaire Farm nursery in New Jersey founded by Bob Boni and partners. Boni knew Mr. McNamara III from their days together at Pine Hollow Farm. Leo's family moved to New York in 1973 when I was the yearling manager at Pine Hollow Stud Farm and as a high school senior he became my weekend and then summer help, said Boni. We forged a great friendship over the next 40-something years, regardless of where our travels took us, and he will forever be one of the most special people I have ever known. Leo was a great advocate for the horsemen and horsewomen of New Jersey in so many ways and always with the fairness and decency that characterized his personality. He loved and adored his wife Cathy and his daughter Celeste and he will be missed by anyone fortunate to have known him. After Dreamaire closed its operations, Mr. McNamara III re-established Two Gaits Farm in New Jersey and bred and boarded horses. In 2001 Mr. McNamara III began working for the SBOANJ, becoming executive administrator in 2006. During his years with the SBOANJ, Mr. McNamara III worked with racetracks in the Garden State to keep tabs on the purse accounts, becoming an astute expert of analyzing handle from various sources with various percentages going to purses. I've been a director of the SBOA for 10 years, and Leo was invaluable, said Mark Ford, president of the SBOANJ. I don't think the horsepeople in New Jersey can realize how invaluable he was advocating for horsemen and horsewomen and protecting our interests. He always brought knowledge and commonsense to the table and could always come up with a commonsense approach or solution. Because of Mr. McNamara's knowledge of the purse account and percentages of handle earned, he played a significant role in Jeff Gural's acquisition of the Meadowlands from the state of New Jersey. Leo was a straight shooter and a great guy to work with, said Jason Settlemoir, CEO and general manager of the Meadowlands Racetrack. He's going to be missed from both an industry standpoint and as a friend. Mr. McNamara III is survived by his wife, Cathy; a daughter, Celeste, assistant professor of history at University of Warwick, Coventry, United Kingdom; two stepchildren, Dr. Daniel J. Dooley and Katie Pidge Decker; his mother, Irene; one brother, Joe (Meg Booth); eight sisters, Anne Slosky, Coleen (Frank) Benedett, Bridget (Jeffrey) Fenessy, Kate (David) Smith, Mary Coleman, Kelly (Patrick) Kennedy, Celeste (Brian) O'Neill and Jane (Glenn) Taylor; 14 nieces and nephews; and more than 100 cousins. Visitation will be held Thursday, June 16, from 2-4 and 6-9 p.m. at Peppler Funeral Home, 122 Crosswicks St, Bordentown, N.J., 08505. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Friday at St. Mary's Church, 45 Crosswicks St., in Bordentown. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Harness Horse Youth Foundation, 16575 Carey Rd., Westfield, IN 46074. By Kathy Parker, The Horsemen and Fair World

It is with our deepest sorrow that we inform you of the death of Leo McNamara this morning Sunday June 12, 2016. Leo died of complications following a hard fought battle with cancer, just two weeks short of his 61st birthday. Leo was the SBOANJ's Executive Administrator for 15 years, this is a tragic blow to the racing industry as a whole. We not only grieve at the passing of a tremendous individual but also for the loss his family suffers. Service announcements will be posted when available. Courtney Stafford  

MANALAPAN, NJ -- June 9, 2016 -- It's that time of year again. The SBOANJ will be hosting its annual golf outing to benefit the harness racing Horsemen's Benevolent Fund and TrotPAC, on Monday July 11, 2016 at Gambler Ridge Golf Club. Come on out and enjoy a fun filled day of food, drinks, golf and prizes. The event starts with a round of golf, and is followed by a lovely dinner with a chance to win great prizes. There is a wide range of sponsorship opportunities available. Golf packages include the Gold, Silver or Bronze packages. Not really a golfer? Well we have something for everyone. You can sponsor Dinner, Lunch, a Drink Cart or even one of the golf contests. The contests include Hole-in-One, Closet-to-the-Pin, Longest Drive or Putting. Still not for you? How about sponsoring a hole or placing a business card ad. All proceeds go to TrotPAC and the SBOANJ's Horsemen's Benevolent Fund. For more information, contact Polly Hartzell at the SBOANJ office 732-462-2357 Courtney Stafford Publicity Consultant SBOANJ 

MANALAPAN, NJ -- June 3, 2016 -- The Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey, along with the Backstretch Community Assistance Program, will once again offer harness racing college scholarships in 2016. The scholarships are valued at a total distribution of $7,500 and are available for qualified students who are the son or daughter of a full time participant in New Jersey harness racing or are themselves a full time participant in New Jersey harness racing. Students must have completed the SAT or ACT and be accepted to or currently attending a college or university. Only one candidate per household will be considered, and there is a lifetime cap of $10,000 per individual. Financial need, student involvement in community volunteering, extracurricular academic activities, evidence of strong character and leadership and interest in equine industry will all be considered for each applicant. Applications and requirements are available on the SBOANJ website or contact Linda Goss at Freehold and the Meadowlands. Courtney Stafford

For the past several years, the Meadowlands racetrack has been made available for training on Thursdays in May and June at a cost of $50 per horse or $1,000 per trainer for unlimited use that was used to defray the expense. Effective, immediately, the SBOA of N.J. will be covering that cost for the harness racing horsemen.   SBOA of NJ President Mark Ford had this to say on the topic, "Getting the two-year-olds some work over that surface and accustomed to all that goes at a racetrack is important. If we have the funds, it helps our horsemen and covers the track's cost then it seemed like a good idea. Whatever we as a horseman's organization can do to encourage participation at The Meadowlands, we are happy to do."   The Meadowlands will refund to trainers the money that has already been collected toward the training costs. These training sessions will continue to be offered through the month of June. Trainers must still contact the racing office by noon on Tuesdays with the number of horses they will be bringing to train each Thursday.   Meadowlands Media Relations

On behalf of the trustees at TrotPAC, I am seeking your financial support to aid in TrotPAC’s efforts to revitalize (standardbred) harness racing in New Jersey. TrotPAC works in conjunction with the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey and is the official political action committee for New Jersey’s harness racing industry.  In the wake of recent changes at the SBOANJ, there has been some confusion over just where donations to the political action committee should be sent. Make no mistake, TrotPAC is the political action arm of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey and is duly sanctioned to raise and distribute revenues for the specific purpose of the betterment of the New Jersey standardbred breeding and racing industry.  This is done with the aid of our industry’s official lobbyists at Advocacy & Management Group, Inc., a firm active at the State Capitol in Trenton. As you may be aware, the state legislature recently approved a referendum that will be on the ballot in November which will address the approval of casinos in north Jersey.  The harness racing industry will directly benefit by the establishment of gaming outside of Atlantic City, allowing our industry in New Jersey to finally have the opportunity to resurrect itself to a competitive level on par with our neighboring states. If we do not get the voters’ approval in November, our state’s standardbred programs, as we know them now and in the future, may not be sustainable. Therefore, it is imperative that we continue to meet with legislators and gain their support.  With our help, they will be able to develop enabling legislation that will ensure the proper level of financial support for our industry here in New Jersey. The TrotPAC trustees will be reaching out to all of you in the near future to ask for your support. If you have questions regarding the upcoming election, the proposed casino operations, or the impact of the casinos on  harness racing in New Jersey, please contact me directly or contact the SBOANJ office. Thank you for your support, Anthony Perretti TrotPAC 64 Business Route 33 Manalapan, NJ 07726 Office: 732-462-2357 Cell: 609-273-5742

MANALANPAN, NJ -- January 2, 2016 -- William "Bill" Perretti 36, close nephew of SBOANJ Board Director Anthony Perretti, passed away on December 26, 2015. Mr. Perretti was a passionate surfer, skateboarder and sport bike rider. Visitation for Mr. Perretti will be on Sunday January 3, 2016, between 1-2 p.m. at the Lohman Funeral Home Ormond, 733 W. Granada Blvd. Ormond, Beach FL 32174. Funeral service to immediately follow at 2 p.m. He was survived by his parents, William and Joan Peretti Jr., and his younger brother Ben. He is also the grandson of William Perretti Senior. The SBOANJ board is very sad to learn of the loss of director Anthony Perretti's nephew and offers their deepest condolences. Courtney Stafford

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