Bill Whitescarver, Designer of MTHA Pension Plan, Dies at 81

William “Bill” Whitescarver, who designed and launched the backstretch pension plan for Maryland Thoroughbred horsemen in 1987, died Feb. 6. He was 81.

Whitescarver, a United States Army veteran, served as vice president of investments for Chapin Davis Inc., a financial services firm in Baltimore, and was a member of the company’s board of directors. Up until his death, he continued to manage the investments of MTHA pension plan which was created to provide retirement income to backstretch workers as a supplement to Social Security.

Whitescarver, a Baltimore County resident who was educated at the University of Baltimore, also served on other boards in the retirement services industry.

“Bill was a first-class guy who truly cared about the racing community and the people who work on the backstretch,” MTHA Executive Director David Richardson remarked. “The pension plan was his baby, he told me often that he considered it his life’s work.”

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Maryland Senate Committee Discusses Future Of Bowie Training Center

Whether horses return to the vacant Bowie Training Center in Maryland apparently hinges on the results of a Maryland Stadium Authority report on the feasibility of rebuilding Pimlico Race Course, according to comments made Feb. 2 during a Senate Finance Committee hearing.

Sen. Douglas Peters, whose district includes the City of Bowie, filed a bill that would authorize the state to “acquire, by purchase or condemnation for public use with just compensation, private property relating to the Bowie Race Course Training Center if the owner does not meet certain requirements.” Bowie, which held its last race meet in the summer of 1985, hasn’t been used for training since the spring of 2015, and the local community is anxious about the future of the property.

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February 2017 Newsletter Available

newsletter2017 2The February 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.


MTHA Will Propose Change in Claiming Rule to MRC

The MTHA Board of Directors Jan. 27 voted to request that the Maryland Racing Commission make a change in a rule regarding claimed horses.

Under the current rule, the new owner of a claimed horse, should it be entered and run within 30 days, must race the horse at a claiming price 25% higher than the price for which it was claimed. Under the MTHA request, the 30-day window would be reduced to 20 days.

MTHA board members made it clear the change can only be made by the MRC. The board acted in response to concerns voiced by trainers who attended the Jan. 27 meeting.

Most of the trainers said the current rule, coupled with a three-day racing week at Laurel Park for most of the year, hinders their ability to provide earnings opportunities for owners who claim horses. They also said the tightening of therapeutic medication rules over the past three years has perhaps negated the need to mandate that a horse race at higher claiming price in the start after it’s claimed.

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Fantasy Owner’s Day in the works for March 18th at Laurel Park

Horsemen and breeders are being encouraged to bring friends to a special Fantasy Owners’ Day at Laurel Park March 18 as part of a broader effort to introduce people to racing and Thoroughbred ownership.

The event will be sponsored by the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, Maryland Jockey Club, Maryland Horse Breeders Association and Capital Bank.

Organizers are currently working on the exact details of the day, but the Saturday event will include a “Fantasy Owners’ Experience” with a 10:30 a.m. seminar in the Ruffian Room featuring the region’s top partnership managers; a buffet luncheon, paddock access, a winner’s circle presentation, and gift bags; and access to an optional training session at 8:30 a.m. on the track apron with coffee and donuts available.

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Delegate Kaiser Assumes Top Spot On Important Committee To Racing

Del. Anne Kaiser of Montgomery County will take over as chair of the Maryland House Ways and Means Committee, which is responsible for legislation related to horse racing in the state.

House Speaker Michael Busch recently announced the appointment of Kaiser, who has served on the Ways and Means Committee since 2003. As Democratic Majority Leader of the House of Delegates, Kaiser has been close adviser to Busch.

“Delegate Kaiser has been a tireless champion for public education,” Busch said in a release. “She is well-respected by her colleagues of both parties in the House and will do a tremendous job as chairman of the committee.”

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