Hoffberger re-elected horsemen's president

September 08, 1993|By Ross Peddicord | Ross Peddicord,Staff Writer

Richard Hoffberger was elected last night to his second consecutive three-year term as president of the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, an organization that represents about 3,000 horse owners and trainers.

"It's a nice vote of confidence," Hoffberger said. He listed the possible formation of a Maryland-Virginia racing circuit, the expansion of off-track betting and horsemen's interests in commingling and cross-breed simulcasting programs as immediate major issues.

During his just completed term Hoffberger is credited with improving relations between the MTHA and Laurel/Pimlico operator Joe De Francis. Last year he worked out a compromise that kept half of the Pimlico Race Course stable area open for winter training; management had wanted to shut it down. It is still undetermined whether all or part of the stable area will be kept open this year from November through March.

Previously Hoffberger had served three consecutive one-year terms as MTHA president from 1987-89.

Trainer Ferris Allen was also re-elected to a second term as the association's vice president.

At the meeting, De Francis told the MTHA board that the purse account during the last three months had increased 9 percent after showing a 17 percent decrease earlier in the year.

He attributed the increase to expanded simulcasting programs. De Francis added that because more allowance races and high-priced claimers are now being carded that purse levels for the better quality races have increased although the growth has not been reflected across-the-board.

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