After Positive Hair Tests, Sam Houston Futurity Will Be Held As Non-Wagering Event; Trainers Barred From Entry Box

by | 05.27.2021


On Wednesday, the Paulick Report learned that six of the 10 finalists in Friday night’s $731,650 Sam Houston Futurity for 2-year-old Quarter Horses at Sam Houston Race Park in Houston, Texas, were found to have either clenbuterol or albuterol in hair samples taken on May 15.

Two other horses’ sample sizes were insufficient and two of the 10 tested clean.

Thursday, Sam Houston Race Park announced that Friday’s Grade 2 race will be held as a non-wagering event, and that trainers of horses testing positive will be barred from entering at the track, effective immediately.


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Sales Companies and Buyers Support TCA’s Backstretch and Farm Employee Charities

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Thoroughbred Charities of America announced today that over $100,000 has been raised to assist backstretch and farm worker-focused charities.  The funds will be awarded to approved grant applicants during TCA’s current granting cycle.

Keeneland’s September 2020 Yearling Sale, November 2020 Breeding Stock Sale, and the January Horses of All Ages Sale offered buyers the opportunity to donate one-half of one percent (.05%) of their total sale purchases to TCA via a voluntary contribution on their invoices. Fasig-Tipton made a generous direct contribution in support of these fundraising efforts.

“Our workforce is vital to our industry and it is imperative that we take care of them,” said Mike McMahon President of TCA. “During the height of the pandemic many of our human-focused charities incurred significant additional expenses to care for workers affected by COVID-19, so we asked Keeneland and Fasig for their help in raising money for these charities. We are very grateful to the buyers and sales companies for their contributions.”

Since 1990, TCA has distributed over $24 million in grants to approved charities working to provide Thoroughbred aftercare as well as health and human services for backstretch and farm workers.

Last year, TCA distributed grants totaling nearly $1,070,000. A record 92 grant applications were received during the organization’s annual grant cycle. Ultimately, 70 organizations were approved for a grant including 45 aftercare organizations, 16 backstretch and farm worker programs, five equine-assisted therapy organizations, three Thoroughbred incentive programs, and one research organization. Grant recipients from the last three years can be found on Additionally, the Horses First Fund, an emergency fund started in 2016 by LNJ Foxwoods and managed by TCA, provided Coronavirus relief funding to three backstretch organizations, seven aftercare organizations and supported two feed assistance programs earlier this year.  The total expended from the Horses First Fund was $79,900 bringing the organization’s total 2020 grantmaking over the $1 million mark.

TCA’s mission is to fund and facilitate the support of Thoroughbreds and the people who care for them. TCA distributes grants to several categories of Thoroughbred-related nonprofits including rehabilitation, retraining, rehoming and retirement organizations; backstretch and farm employee programs; equine-assisted therapy programs; and research organizations.  TCA is the charitable arm of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA).

Additional H-2B Visas Available for 2nd Half of Fiscal Year 2021

LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 25, 2021)— The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued a joint temporary final rule that was published today in the Federal Register and offers 22,000 additional H-2B visas to employers for the second half of the federal fiscal year that ends on September 30, 2021. These visas are used by employers, such as racehorse trainers, who seek seasonal guest workers. They are capped at 66,000 annually, with an even split of 33,000 available for each half of the federal government’s fiscal year. Six thousand of these supplemental visas will be reserved for nationals of the Northern Triangle countries of Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala.

“The 22,000 H-2B visas offered through this rule issued by the DHS and DOL will be helpful to employers who rely on the H-2B visa program, including trainers, but many more of these visas are ultimately required to satisfy the need,” said NTRA President and CEO Alex Waldrop. “For that reason, the NTRA, through its involvement in the H-2B Workforce Coalition, supports additional relief from the burdensome annual H-2B visa cap through a permanent returning worker exemption.”

Employers can find eligibility and filing details here.

This past December, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 became law and included a provision that provides the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) with the discretionary authority to release an additional 64,176 H-2B visas when significant need is demonstrated. The NTRA supports all efforts to make additional visas available to seasonal businesses struggling with labor issues.

The H-2B visa guest worker program is a nonimmigrant visa program used by many industries that need temporary non-agricultural help when domestic workers are unavailable. For the horse racing industry, trainers rely heavily on the H-2B program to fill various backside positions.

Demand for H-2B visas often exceeds their availability and the cap level is quickly reached, leaving employers in need. For the second half of federal fiscal year 2021, DHS announced that by February 12 it had received enough H-2B worker petitions to reach the congressionally mandated cap of 33,000 visas allotted.


Live Thoroughbred  Racing Will Shift to Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday


Bossier City, LA – Louisiana Downs will present Camel and Ostrich Races on Sunday, May 30. The wildly popular special event,combined with live Thoroughbred racing and simulcast racing from tracks across the country, is always entertaining for the entire family.


The first live Thoroughbred race runs at 2:45 pm (Central) with the 100-yard camel and ostrich races taking place between the horse races.


Ostriches usually weigh an average of 200 pounds, but some males can tip the scales at 340 pounds. Known for their long neck and legs, ostriches also have extremely distinctive eyes, the largest of any land vertebrate, are very fast and our jockeys will have to hold on tight to the finish line.


A fully grown adult camel can exceed six feet in height at weigh up to 1,000 pounds. Unpredictable at best, camels can be good-tempered, patient and intelligent.  The moaning and bawling sound they make when they’re loaded up and have to rise to their feet is like the grunting and heavy breathing of a weight-lifter in action, and the crowds chime in to root for the favorite!


“Following the COVID-19 pandemic, we are thrilled to welcome back fans and host this family-friendly event,” said David Heitzmann, Director of Racing at Louisiana Downs. “We felt this would be an excellent way to kick off our new Sunday through Tuesday live racing schedule.”


Live Racing Schedule

Currently, live racing takes place Saturday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Beginning, Sunday, May 30, live racing will be conducted Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday until the conclusion of the live season on Tuesday, September 21. For more information on the 84-day racing season and special events, visit



About Louisiana Downs

Located near Shreveport in Bossier City, Louisiana, Louisiana Downs opened in 1974 and was purchased by Caesars Entertainment in December, 2002. With annual Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing seasons, the track is committed to presenting the highest quality racing programs paired with its 150,000 square foot entertainment complex offering casino gambling, dining and plasma screen televisions for sports and simulcast racing.

First Winner for Louisiana Stallion El Deal

Louisiana stallion El Deal  had his first winner when 2-year-old Louisiana bred filly Royal O’Haigain  won a $64,562 maiden special weight at Santa Anita Park May 21.

El Deal entered stud in 2018 at Adcock’s Red River Farms in Coushatta, La., where he stands for a $2,500 fee. The son of Munnings out of Spirit of Wailea won 9 of 17 starts including the Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap (G1) at Saratoga Race Course in 2017.  The sire has one other starter, Free Like a Girl , another Louisiana-bred who ran second in her debut in a $34,000 maiden special weight at Lone Star Park May 8.

Bred in Louisiana by Cloyce Clark Jr., Royal O’Haigain is the first winner from grade 3-placed Dreaming of Susie.

Royal O’Haigain First Winner for Stallion El Deal

El Deal won the 2017 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap (G1) at Saratoga.




Royal O’Haigain  became the first winner for the Louisiana stallion El Deal  when the 2-year-old filly won a $64,562 maiden special weight at Santa Anita Park May 21.

Bet down to 4-5, she led from start to finish, finishing 5 1/2 lengths ahead of runner-up Harddiane . The Luis Mendez-trained winner, owned by L. N. M. Three Company, Pappas Horse Racing, and Charles Bartlett, completed 4 1/2 furlongs in :53.12 on a fast track under Alexis Centeno.

Bred in Louisiana by Cloyce Clark Jr., Royal O’Haigain is the first winner from the grade 3-placed Cowtown Cat   mare Dreaming of Susie . Royal O’Haigain fell short of her reserve when bidding halted at $47,000 at the Ocala Breeders’ Sales’ March 2021 Two-Year-Olds In Training Sale, where she was consigned by Havens Bloodstock Agency.


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First Starter for Iron Fist Breaks Maiden in First Start!

The first starter for Louisiana stallion Iron Fist, two-year-old Feisty Fist (Iron Fist-Sheza Roman Ruler, by Roman Ruler) won a maiden special weight at Evangeline Downs, May 20th in his first start! 

The Steven B. Flint trainee piloted by K.J. Smith took the 4 ½ furlong sprint in :54.46 to win by a length.

The two-year old gelding is a homebred for Carrol Castille and is from the first crop by Iron Fist, who stands at Castille’s Whispering Oaks Farm LLC in Carencro, Louisiana.

The morning after the victory, a very happy Flint talked about how much this win means. “It’s a long process. Carrol purchased Iron Fist with a stallion career in mind. We are very fortunate that he first continued his successful racing career becoming a millionaire. Then he began his stud career. Carrol has been building his broodmare band with top quality mares. This is at least a three year process. Last night was very satisfying. This horse [Feisty Fist] was not bred for 4 ½ furlongs. All of his [Iron Fist] babies are correct, strong, smart and athletic. We are very proud…very proud. He got a lot of peppermints last night.”

Additionally, a two-year-old filly by Iron Fist, Silver Fist, sold at the recent Fasig Tipton Mid-Atlantic sale for $80,000 after clocking 10.2 in the pre-sale under-tack show, and will be another Iron Fist runner to watch at the tracks this summer.

Pike Back at Midlantic Sale With Promising Consignment

Al and Salley Pike’s Pike Racing sold the sale-topper at last year’s auction


Al and Salley Pike’s Pike Racing sold the $1.1 million sale-topping Uncle Mo  colt at last year’s Fasig-Tipton Midlantic 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale, and the Louisiana-based operation is back this year with another promising consignment that is bound to appeal to prospective buyers during the two-day sale at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium, Md., May 17-18.

“We are very excited,” Al Pike said. “We’ve brought a real solid group here. We have a couple of very nice Into Mischiefs. We have a beautiful Medaglia d’Oro   filly, a colt by Gun Runner   who had a great update, and a gorgeous New York-bred Curlin   colt who is a really nice horse. They all have some pedigree, they have the looks, and they performed well on the racetrack, so we’re excited.”

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Treys Midnite Moon wins the Evangeline Downs Classic. Coady Photography.


OPELOUSAS, LA –A thrilling edition of the Evangeline Downs classic delighted a Saturday night crowd as Tim Thornton guided Snake Racing LLC’s Treys Midnite Moon to victory in the $60,000 feature.


Treys Midnite  Moon broke alertly in the one-mile test for older Louisiana-breds.  Settling into a perfect stalking trip, the Corale ‘Bunky’ Richards runner tracked a quartet of runners, while in good striking position.  Grand Luwegee, Pound for Pound, Jax Man and Maga Man lined up four across the track in an opening quarter-mile of 24.04 and a half mile in 47.94.  Treys Midnite Moon continued to save ground throughout and remained in contention as the field went through six furlongs in 1:12.01.


Thornton urged Treys Midnite Moon through a narrow opening on the rail inside the furlong marker and finished strongly to outrun Pound for Pound by a half-length.  Mageez ran on from far back to finish third.  The final running time for the mile distance over the fast track was 1:37.12.


The win by Treys Midnite Moon was the 14th of his outstanding 44-race career.  The winner’s share of $36,000 pushed his career earnings to $340,585.


A 6-year-old gelding, Treys Midnite Moon was bred in Louisiana by David Thomas Rogers.  The dark bay or brown gelding is by Neko Bay, out of the Street Cry (IRE) mare Peace Street.


Sent off as the fourth choice at 6-1, Treys Midnite Moon returned $14 to win, $4.80 to place  and $3.80 to show.  Favored Pound for Pound returned $2.40 to place and $2.40 to show.  Longshot Mageez paid $10.40 to show.


Evangeline Downs begins the fourth week of live racing on Wednesday at 5:50pm. Racing continues on a Wednesday thru Saturday schedule until the end of the meet on September 18.


Evangeline Downs Racetrack Casino and Hotel, a property of Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE:BYD), features exciting casino action, live horse racing and fun dining experiences. Evangeline Downs is located in Opelousas, Louisiana, off I-49 on Cresswell Lane at Exit 18.




Snowball wins the Evangeline Downs Distaff. Coady Photography.


OPELOUSAS, LA – Evangeline Downs kicked off the 2021 stakes schedule as Diego Saenz booted home Tin Roof Farms LLC’s Snowball to win the $60,000 Evangeline Downs Distaff.


Snowball broke smoothly in the one-mile test for older Louisiana-bred fillies and mares.  After being allowed to settle off the early pace set by Saber Cut and Distractor Factor, under steady fractions of 24.84 for the opening quarter-mile and 48.72 for the half mile.  As the field entered the far turn, Snowball commenced with a three-wide rally to collar the leaders at the top of the lane after six furlongs went in 1:13.17.


After taking the lead inside the final furlong, Snowball, who is trained by Sam Breaux,  drew clear over a stubborn Distractor Factor to win by three-quarters of a length.  Saber Cut wound up third another half-length behind the top pair.  The final running time for the distance was 1:38.35 over a track listed fast.


The win by Snowball was the sixth of her 28-race career.   She earned $36,000 for the victory, running her career earnings to $296, 680.


A 5-year-old mare, Snowball was bred in Louisiana by 4M Ranch.  The gray, or roan, mare is by Apriority, out of the Value Plus mare Inner Peace.


Sent off as the 8.5 favorite, Snowball paid $5.40 to win, $3.00 to place and $2.40 to show.  Distractor Factor returned $5.00 to place and $4.20 to show.  Saber Cut paid $5.60 to show.


Evangeline Downs finishes up the third week of racing with another nine-race card Saturday, featuring the $60,000 Evangeline Downs Classic.  A field of seven set to travel the one-mile distance.


Evangeline Downs Racetrack Casino and Hotel, a property of Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE:BYD), features exciting casino action, live horse racing and fun dining experiences. Evangeline Downs is located in Opelousas, Louisiana, off I-49 on Cresswell Lane at Exit 18.