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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Richard Mena: Chaplain

Jockeys' Guild Names Richard Mena as Chaplain

(Monrovia , California ) -- The Board of Directors of the Jockeys' Guild has named Richard Mena as the organization's Chaplain.

A former thoroughbred owner who has been serving as a chaplain for over four years, Mena has conducted numerous Bible study groups in jockeys' rooms in the Southern California area, and through a web site,

"My mission is to continue spreading the Good Word, sharing the real character of God: the way, the truth and the light," he explained.

"In addition to providing spiritual guidance for riders, Chaplain Mena will be helping to raise money for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund. He is passionate about both the physical and spiritual well-being of the riders," said Dwight Manley, National Director of the Jockeys' Guild.
Monday, July 23, 2007

Nolan gets 1000th Win

Jockey Nolan earns 1,000th career win

Originally published by Thoroughbred Times

Jockey Paul Nolan earned his 1,000th career win by guiding Hurricane Bernie to a front-running three-length win in the $45,000 Canterbury Park Lassie Stakes on Saturday.

Nolan began riding professionally in 1990 and has compiled purse earnings of $10,386,690 through Saturday. In 9,583 career starts, he also has posted 1,137 runner-up finishes and 1,161 third-place finishes.

Nolan has earned 35 of his wins in stakes races. He posted his most lucrative victory aboard K Z Bay in the $115,000 Lady Canterbury Breeders’ Cup Stakes in 1997.

Nolan leads the Canterbury rider standings with 49 wins through Saturday. He has compiled purse earnings of $5,707,929 at the Shakopee, Minnesota , track, the fourth-highest all-time total earned among Canterbury riders.

Nolan has also made 4,030 career starts at Canterbury , the second-highest all-time total among riders at the track.

Congratulations Paul!
Thursday, July 05, 2007

Horse Owners/Trainers Sued

Jockeys Sue Illinois Horse Owners and Trainers

(Chicago, IL) - In a dispute over wages that have gone up only slightly in 22 years, the Jockeys' Guild and veteran rider Earlie Fires have filed an anti-trust lawsuit against the Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association (ITHA), Association President Frank J. Kirby and all of the approximately 300 owners and trainers of horses that raced at Arlington Park Race Track since May first.

The Guild and Fires are representative plaintiffs on behalf of a class of all licensed professional jockeys who have ridden at Arlington Park Race Track since May first.

The suit alleges the trainers and horsemen violated anti-trust laws by engaging "in a group conspiracy to depress fees," and that the defendants received "unjust enrichment" by refusing to increase fees paid to riders at Arlington Park.

Jockeys have received only one $5 increase since 1985, and currently receive a minimum $55 mount fee.

"It's been nearly a quarter century since the last major increase to provide livable wages for hundreds of jockeys who risk disabling injuries every time they ride. Being a professional jockey is one of the most dangerous jobs in America. An average of 2,500 injuries involving jockeys are recorded every year," said Dwight Manley, National Manager of the Jockeys' Guild.

"After months of negotiations this spring, the Guild reached a good faith, tentative agreement with representatives of the Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association to raise fees. However, the Association's Board then rejected the modest $30 increase that would have raised the minimum mount fee to $85."

On May first, dozens of jockeys notified the ITHA and Arlington Park officials about specific fees they will accept as compensation at Arlington Park, effective immediately. Unlike some other states, the Illinois Racing Board does not regulate racing fees paid to jockeys.

"The lawsuit claims the defendants have been aware since May first they were entering into a contract to pay the jockeys' fees, but have failed to pay them and refused to permit owners and trainers to pay any increases through the Horsemen's Bookkeeper," said Thomas D. Allison of the Chicago law firm of Allison, Slutsky & Kennedy who filed the suit on behalf of the Guild and jockeys.

"The lawsuit states that the actions of the ITHA and other defendants constitute a restraint of trade and unlawful conspiracy under Illinois anti-trust laws," said Allison.

The Jockeys' Guild represents more than 1,200 riders nationwide. Fires is known as the "Dean" of Arlington Park jockeys. He has over 6,400 career victories, and was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 2001.

The lawsuit is Jockeys' Guild et al vs. Frank J. Kirby et al, and was filed on Friday, June 29, 2007, in the Chancery Division of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. It is docket number 07CH17231.


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