LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Keeneland Fall Meet begins on October 4, and the staff is excited for the arrival of October's Fall Season.
But with it's arrival, comes concerns of safety for C.E.O. and President of Keeneland, Bill Thomason. "We love our horses, we care for our horses, and we are always doing everything we can to keep them safe," he tells us.
He says one way to assure horse and rider safety is the addition of two new positions to the Keeneland staff. Jim Pendergest, who has been part of the staff for 19 years, will have a new responsibility on the track as Director of Racing Surfaces. In this position he will be responsible for overseeing all race conditions.
Also joining the team is Dr. George Mundy, a veterinarian who will be filling the new position of Equine Safety Director. Mundy will be there to review all race-related accidents in order to help prevent future ones.
Thomason also notes another way to preserve the integrity of the sport is by reform. He says Keeneland has been on the forefront in demanding changes in medication protocols and reporting throughout the horse industry, "we are going to be relentless with pushing these reforms here and all over the country," says Thomason.