Page 13 - NMHBASummer2019
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                                 NEW MEXICO RACING COMMISSION
New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham in April appointed five new members to the state racing commission.
The new Chairperson, Beverly Bourguet of Albuquerque, previously served on the commis- sion from 2011-15. She is a board member and founding member of the Downs at Albuquerque Chaplaincy, and she and her husband, Ralph Vincent, breed and raise Quarter Horses and race both Quarter Horses and Thoroughbreds.
The other new commissioners are John Buffington, Freda McSwane, David “Hossie” Sanchez, and Billy G. Smith.
Mr. Buffington was the chief operating of- ficer of the San Juan Regional Medical Center in Farmington from 2006-17. He has more than 40 years of experience as an owner and breeder of racehorses.
Ms. McSwane is a practicing attorney in Lincoln County, and she is an active owner and breeder of racehorses. She previously served
on the board of trustees for the New Mexico Horse Breeders’ Association, and she has been active in the racing industry for many years.
The commission’s Vice Chairman, Mr. Sanchez is the owner of San Bar Racing LLC, a horse breeding and racing program, and he serves as president of San Bar Investments and San Bar Construction Corp. He was
a member of the racing commission from 2003-09, and he has served on the State Fair Commission for 10 years.
Mr. Smith is the owner of Smith En- terprises LLC, a construction firm. He has been involved in the racing industry since the 1970s as an owner, and he has served on
various boards for the American Quarter Horse Association.
According to state statute, at least three members of the commission must be practical breeders of racehorses in New Mexico, and no more than three can be members of the same political party.
One of the commission’s major future deci- sions will be the awarding of a license for the state’s sixth and final racino. The commission has received five proposals for racinos, three from the Clovis area, one from Tucumcari, and one from Lordsburg.
Under state compacts with casino-operating tribes, only six racinos are allowed in New Mexico. The five existing establishments are
in Hobbs, Ruidoso, Farmington, Albuquerque, and Sunland Park.
The track’s 53-day Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse meet opens September 21.
Zia Park in Hobbs has released its stakes schedule for its 2019 season, which runs Septem- ber 21-December 18.
Two events top Zia Park’s season, New Mexico Cup Day -- 12 stakes for state-bred Thorough- breds and Quarter Horses -- on October 27, and “Land of Enchantment Day” -- featuring seven Thoroughbred stakes -- on November 27.
New Mexico Cup Day features four Quarter Horse stakes, topped by the 400-yard, $350,000-est. New Mexico Cup Futurity (RG2) for 2-year-olds, and the 440-yard, $200,000-est. New Mexico Cup Derby
(RG3) for 3-year-olds. The event’s richest Thoroughbred stakes are the 1-mile, $185,000 Rocky Gulch New Mexico Cup Champi- onship (R) for 3-year-olds and older, the 1-mile, $175,000 Peppers Pride New Mexico Cup Distaff Championship (R) for fillies
and mares, 3-year-olds and older, and the 6-furlong, $175,000 New Mexico Cup Sprint Championship (R) for 3-year-olds and older.
Approximately $2 million in purses will be distributed on New Mexico Cup Day, making it the richest day of restricted state- bred racing in North America.
Land of Enchantment Day is presented on the day before Thanksgiving, and it annually produces Zia Park’s highest wagering handle of the season -- last year, a total of $1,707,381 was wagered on the 10-race program, includ- ing $1,662,633 off-track. This year’s Land of Enchantment Day card will offer total purses
of $900,000 and will be topped by the 1 1/16- mile, $250,000 Zia Park Derby for 3-year-olds, and the 1 1/16-mile, $250,000 Zia Park Oaks for 3-year-old fillies.
Other prominent Quarter Horse stakes on Zia Park’s calendar include the 400-yard, $300,000- est. Hobbs America Futurity (G2), and 440-yard, $200,000-est. Hobbs America Derby (G3), both of which will be run on October 13, and the 440- yard, $300,000 Zia Park Championship (G1), the 440-yard, $150,000 Southwest Juvenile Stakes
(G2), and the 400-yard, $145,000 New Mexico Filly & Mare Championship (RG1), all of which will be contested on December 1.
For the most part, Zia Park will present live racing on a Saturday-through-Tuesday schedule. First post every day is set for 12 p.m. (Mountain).
Stall applications are due July 19. For more information, including a stall appli- cation and complete stakes schedule, visit, or call Zia Park at 1-888-ZIA-PARK.
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