Gov. Steve Beshear has signed an executive order creating a new task force to study Kentucky’s horse racing industry, with the goal of ensuring that one of the commonwealth’s signature industries remains healthy and competitive.
The Governor’s Task Force on the Future of Horse Racing is charged with studying the economic soundness of the industry, the effectiveness and quality of drug testing, the oversight role of the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission and the adequacy of state laws and regulations.
The panel represents interests throughout the industry including large and small tracks, trainers, owners, breeders and the public at-large.
Tracy Farmer, a Thoroughbred breeder in Midway, is chairing the task force.
Other members include: Robert M. Beck, chair of the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission; Bob Vance, secretary of the Public Protection Cabinet; Nick Nicholson, president and CEO of Keeneland Association; Brian Lavin, a real estate developer in Louisville; Ron Geary, owner of Ellis Park; Steven P. Sexton, president of Churchill Downs Racetrack; Dr. Robert Lawrence, director of the Racetrack Management Program at the University of Louisville; Joe Costa, president and CEO of Red Mile/Tattersalls; Edward S. Bonnie, an equine attorney in Prospect; Duncan Pitchford, an attorney in Paducah; and Ellen Hesen, general counsel for Gov. Beshear.