NTWAB Summer 2015 Newsletter

Originally posted June 22, 2015

Dear Members,

I am sure the run to the Triple Crown reminded many of us why we chose this profession. What an honor and thrill it was to chronicle the first sweep in 37 years!

It also was a great deal of hard work, and I thank Bob Baffert, Ahmed and Justin Zayat, and Victor Espinoza for making themselves available as often as they did to accommodate our many needs. I also thank those who worked so hard in the publicity departments at each track. There were glitches, but we all worked through them.

One major disappointment – and a source of embarrassment for me – was the continuing absence of a Kentucky Derby media guide. Darren Rogers told us during a conference call last autumn that he was working on an expanded version. John Asher told me this spring that it was his understanding the guide was at the printer, leading me to tell you that this valuable resource was back.

I met with Darren soon after I realized that I was badly misled. He acknowledged that the guide never came close to fruition. He insists the issue is lack of staff, not financial. He said he is willing to have one or more of our members work on the guide as a freelance project. We are following up on that. Please be assured we are doing everything possible on this.

In another Churchill Downs issue, John gave me his word that the Red Smith Awards would be back this year. As we all know, that did not happen. We are now looking to have the Turf Publicists administer the awards, which would have the financial backing of Churchill Downs and be presented by track officials.

Please make me aware of other issues you encountered on the Triple Crown trail. My email: tpedulla23@gmail.com. My cell: 646-337-6955.

Yours in racing,

Tom Pedulla

In other matters:

ANNUAL DINNER: Our annual dinner will be held on Oct. 28 at the Marriott Griffin Gate in Lexington. Ticket prices remain at $75 for members, $100 for non-members. This is a wonderful night and a swift-moving program is promised that will be timed to end by 9:00 p.m.. We receive excellent support from the racing community. It is essential that members support their own event. The NTWAB would like to make a $1,000 donation to an industry-related charity in Kentucky. Second Stride, New Vocations, Old Friends Farm and Markey Cancer Center are being considered. We are open to suggestions. If anyone can assist with silent auction items, please contact Alicia Wincze-Hughes. If you have a lead on an advertiser for the program, please contact Tom Pedulla.

MOONEY AWARD: The membership voted at our Derby meeting to establish the Bill Mooney Courage Award in honor of Bill Mooney, our esteemed colleague who has inspired us all with the qualities he is displaying during his battle against cancer. The Mooney Award will annually honor someone in the industry who displays similar courage in the face of great adversity.

BOARD ELECTION/NEW MEMBERS: Greg Hall, Marty McGee and Alicia Wincze-Hughes were re-elected to two-year terms as Directors of the NTWAB board. We welcome as regular members to the organization Jason Frakes, Ed Golden, Melissa Hoppert, Keeler Johnson and Dick Powell. To all members, please keep in mind when recommending someone new that this is a professional organization. Candidates must be able to demonstrate that they have been paid for work by an entity not tied to a racetrack or the industry.

ANNUAL DUES: Please help us close the books on this by sending a check for $50, payable to the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters, to P.O. Box 541, Prospect, Ky., 40059. Payment inquiries may be made to Loren Hebel-Osborne at lorenpr@aol.com. The deadline is Aug. 1 to allow us to turn our attention to the annual dinner. Thank you for your cooperation.