MRC Approves Amendment To Claiming Regulations

A suspended trainer will not be permitted to claim horses with his or her owner’s license under an amended claiming rule approved by the Maryland Racing Commission at its Nov. 30 meeting.

The current rule allows a suspended trainer to continue using his or her owner’s license without restriction. The MTHA Board of Directors endorsed the change at its most recent meeting Oct. 30; it had been discussed at a previous MRC meeting and supported by commissioners.

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Beyond The Wire Plans Informational Seminar For Horsemen

A special program sponsored by Beyond The Wire, Maryland’s Thoroughbred aftercare program, for owners, trainers and assistant trainers, is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 6, at Laurel Park.

The seminar, which will provide the latest information on injuries and their implications in racehorses as well as a look at racetrack retirement, will be provided by Dr. Patricia Hogan, a New Jersey-based equine surgeon who regularly works with retired racehorses.

The program, which will include lunch for attendees, will be held in the clubhouse beginning at 11:30 a.m.

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Greenmount OTB Receives Approval

The Maryland Racing Commission the evening of Nov. 29 approved an application for a license to operate an off-track betting facility adjacent the Greenmount Station restaurant in Hampstead in Carroll County.

When the OTB begins operating, most likely before the end of this year, it will be the fifth such facility opened by the Maryland Jockey Club over the past several years. The others are at Hollywood Casino Perryville, the Boonsboro Event Center, the Maryland State Fairgrounds at Timonium, and Horseshoe Casino Baltimore.

MJC also operates a betting parlor at the Riverboat on the Potomac, which is located on Maryland waters just off the coast of Virginia. The MRC Nov. 30 approved the transfer of the Potomac OTB license to the MJC in light of plans for the owner to sell the entertainment facility.

MJC also offers year-round full-card simulcasts at its three tracks in the state: Laurel Park, Pimlico Race Course and Rosecroft Raceway.

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December 2017 Newsletter Available

newsletter2017 12The December 2017 edition of the Horsemen's Newsletter is now online and available for download. To view this edition click herearrow

The Horsemen's Newsletter is published monthly by the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association and is mailed to licensed owners and trainers in the state of Maryland.



The Maryland Jockey Club track maintenance crew will examine portions of the racing surface at Pimlico Race Course and close the facility for training Nov. 15.

Rick Allen, Director of Facilities for the MJC, said the project involves installing new cushion material and inspecting the base. He said recent repairs to portions of the base have held based upon inspections.

Pimlico is open year-round for training. The MJC has said it expects additional horses to stable there this winter.


The Maryland racing community Nov. 1 celebrated the life of outrider Edward Pryzbyla, affectionately known as “Pollock Eddie,” who died Oct. 15 after a battle with cancer. He was 68.

Pryzbyla was remembered during a memorial service coordinated by the MTHA and held in TIPS at Laurel Park. His wife, Karen, a longtime pony person at Maryland racetracks, died last October after fighting leukemia.

Ed Pryzbyla was known for his prowess on horseback, but it was noted at the memorial service he was a man of many talents. He served two tours of duty in the United States military, operated a small landscaping business on the side, and provided a home for cats and dogs.

Pryzbyla’s sister Lucille Hebert and her husband Don, who live in New Hampshire, were on hand for the memorial service.

“He was a people person,” his sister said. “He loved all of you.”

Pastor Richard Monterrey, a former jockey in Maryland, conducted the service. He offered prayer and related a personal story in which Pryzbyla greatly impacted his life.

“I was struggling with my weight,” Monterrey said. “I rode a horse one day (at Pimlico) and won the race, but I couldn’t stop the horse because I was crying while thinking about retirement—at age 32 that’s not easy. Eddie was there waiting and helped me pull up the horse.

“He saw I was crying and could see I was broken. It was the first time I saw Eddie share tears. He was man enough to feel what I was feeling. He gave me a hug and then let me go. I think God was working through him to speak to me at that moment when I was down.”

Eric Fried, an exercise rider who became a jockey agent, galloped horses along with Pryzbyla for decades and said he was a “strong rider” with a knack for handling difficult horses.

“He got to get on horses a lot of exercise riders couldn’t gallop because he was such a strong rider,” Fried said. “It was a passion of his, and I’m sure every minute of his life he enjoyed what he did.”

Kaymarie Kreidel, a former jockey and now an exercise rider, said Pryzbyla played a major role in her life, both on and off the racetrack.

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