USTA District 1 (OH) meets

Columbus, OH — Members from the United States Trotting Association District 1 met on Saturday, January 18 at the Residence Inn University Area in Columbus, Ohio to discuss proposed USTA rule changes and to make recommendations that will be conveyed at the USTA’s annual board of directors meeting in March.    The meeting preceded the district’s annual awards dinner, which was held later that evening.

Skip Hoovler (chairman), Dr. John Mossbarger, Dave Bianconi, Kevin Greenfield, and the newly-elected Jason Bluhm presided over the USTA District 1 meeting. USTA Photo.

District directors in attendance were Skip Hoovler (chairman), Dr. John Mossbarger, Dave Bianconi, Kevin Greenfield, and the newly-elected Jason Bluhm.    Hoovler was re-elected as district chairman.

Other notables in the room included Bob Schmitz, former chairman of the Ohio State Racing Commission; Hall of Fame race announcer and current Ohio harness racing ambassador, Roger Huston; Ohio Harness Horsemen’s Association executive director, Renee Mancino, and Jennifer Daniels, administrator of the Standardbred Transition Alliance.  Michele Kopiec, the USTA’s racing operations and licensing manager provided rules context and clarification during the meeting.

District members reviewed 22 rulebook changes for 2020, approving six, rejecting 13, and tabling three.   A complete summary of the District 1 voting is as follows:

The district issued the following recommendations:

Proposal #1 (Elimination of heat racing) – REJECT
Proposal #2 (Extended pari-mutuel meets) – ACCEPT
Proposal #3 (Prohibit gene doping) – ACCEPT
Proposal #4 (Pylon requirements) – REJECT
Proposal #5 (Extended saddle pads) – REJECT
Proposal #6 (Racetrack maintenance) – TABLED
Proposal #7 (Jail period for claimed horses) – REJECT
Proposal #8 (Interfered horses purse money) – REJECT
Proposal #9 (Weighted post position draw) – REJECT
Proposal #10 (Distinguishable starting point) – REJECT
Proposal #11 (Post-July 1 qualifiers) – ACCEPT
Proposal #12 (Standards for fair start pole) – REJECT
Proposal #13 (Amateur driver eligibility) – TABLED
Proposal #14 (Amateur driver eligibility) – TABLED
Proposal #15 (Trainer’s license minimums) – REJECT
Proposal #16 (Driving colors – “P” license) – ACCEPT
Proposal #17 (Whip regulations) – REJECT
Proposal #18 (Sex change reporting requirement) – ACCEPT
Proposal #19 (Remeasure track circumferences) – REJECT
Proposal #20 (Recording ownership percentage) – REJECT
Proposal #21 (Multiple embryo transfers/year) – REJECT
Proposal #22 (Definition of Standardbred) – ACCEPT
Proposal #23 (Non-Standardbred definition) – ACCEPT



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