6FCF4FDA-0D2D-4DDE-AD09-E6E5A0AEE6D6Over 300 horsemen generated in excess of $28,000 while packing the Corner Stable Columbia Thursday, Oct 17 for special event for injured exercise rider Jose Villegas. The entire proceeds from the event, which was hosted by Maryland Horsemen’s Assistance Fund in conjunction with the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, are destined for a special fund established for the injured exercise rider’s recovery. 

“It was remarkable and heartwarming to see the incredible turnout of members of the racing community who wanted to help one of their own,” commented MHAF Executive Director Bobby Lillis. “Jose is a special person who was humbled by the support shown.”

Villegas, a 43-year-old father of three from Hampstead, was recently seriously injured during a morning training session at Laurel Park. He was able to make a brief appearance at the event with his family by his side to thank supporters. Afterwards, he returned to Kernan Hospital in Baltimore County to continue his rehabilitation.


The MHAF and MTHA wishes to acknowledge the following supporters for their assistance making the event a success: Fox Murphy Cassidy, Brenda Stacy, The Gaudet Family, Chip Reed, David and JoAnn Hayden, Tony Aguire, Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association, Cloverleaf Standardbred Owners Association, Maryland Standardbred Breeders Association, Joe Sharp and Rosie Napranvik, Richard J. Hoffberger, Adena Springs, Maryland Jockey Club, Maryland Vet Group, Harry and Tom Meyerhoff, Mike Trombetta, Milton Higgins, John Franzone, Wayne and Juanita Morris, The Jockeys Room and the entire Maryland Racing Community. 

Those still wishing to contribute to the fund are urged to contact the Maryland Horsemen’s Assistance Fund office at 410-902-6843, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or click the link below:


Purse Release