New Year; New Club!

The moment has finally arrived to launch the 2021 Racing Club and there are some big and exciting changes.  Today’s post applies to EXISTING (2020) members.  There will be another post soon for folks that wish to join the Club for the first time – the basic outline here is the same but the sign up procedure will be different.

The short version is that we are presenting to you two options. One is a new venture led by Ted Grevelis that takes you deeper into a partnership group. The second is more like the traditional racing club but with a new structure administered by Wasabi Stables.

Without further ado, here are the particulars.

Wasabi Stables-led Canterbury Racing Club

We are pleased to announce that we will be partnering with national group ownership Wasabi Stables in 2021 for the Canterbury Racing Club.  Wasabi raced at Canterbury last year for the first time and hit the board in five out of six starts racing out of the Tony Rengstorf barn.  Wasabi currently has racehorses competing throughout the Midwest and on the East Coast. They have major expansion plans outlined for Canterbury in 2021.  Wasabi has over 600 partners who have created a community that is both social and educational.  They will be partnering with our club with a 25% stake in all club horses.  This means more horses, more opportunities, and more fun for all involved.

As in past years, there will be absolutely no bills or other payments to be made after the initial one-time payment. When the horse ends its club racing career or is sold, the bills come out of the initial payment you made, but you will never be required to pay any additional funds.  Any profits, or gains from the disposition of horses, will go immediately and directly into your very own Wasabi account for your personal use to buy more horses or withdraw.

The other benefits you have come to appreciate with past club membership like free season passes, stable tours, and on-track events will still be part of the program (pending any COVID-19 restrictions for 2021). These will be coordinated and run by Wasabi Stables.

If you are currently a Clubber and wish to remain in the club with Wasabi directing it, an account will be established for you with a $200 credit from last year’s club distribution.  The club participation cost will remain at $250 so you will need to add $50 or more to your account to purchase a Canterbury Park Club share or shares via the Wasabi website.

Take some time to visit the Wasabi website and social media pages on Facebook and Twitter. That will give you a feel of the other participation opportunities like breeding, buying yearlings, and stallion programs Wasabi can offer.

For more information on the Canterbury Racing Club/Wasabi Ventures group, please contact Joe Scurto at joe.scurto@racehorseminnesota.com and visit their special Canterbury Club page to sign up here: https://www.wasabistables.com/canterbury-park/sign-up.

‘Next Level Canterbury Group’

We’re once again pleased to offer the next step up in racing ownership. It’s something we haven’t done in a few years and it’s time to do it again!

Outside of the micro-fractional groups, most traditional partnerships tend to cost around $2000-$3000 for a share in a smaller partnership or national syndicate.  This ‘mid-level’ group will allow folks to get in a lower price point but become more a part of actual ownership.

Membership level is a $1000 initial commitment ($800 plus $200 credit form 2020 Club)

Membership will not exceed 40 individuals and we’ll be looking at a minimum of 15.

The group’s horse acquisition budget will be based upon the total balance less three months expenses (approximately $7,500) on hand. For example, if 20 people sign up, our horse budget will be $12,500.

As part of being actual owners, should the cash balance become insufficient to cover expenses, members will be required to contribute additional cash to cover three months of bills.  If the balance exceeds three months expenses, the overage can be returned to members at the end a quarter based upon a vote so there is potential for return on your investment as well as the risk.

Unlike when we were Clubbers, the group does not automatically disband at the end of the calendar year and we can let the horse take us as far as he or she can.

Members will be licensed by the Minnesota Racing Commission at a cost of $50 for license and $25 for fingerprints (required of all owners). The group will most likely be organized as an LLC.

Ted Grevelis will direct this group so please contact Ted for additional details on membership, trainers, acquisitions, communication methods and all questions at ted@grevelisracing.com.

Please let Jeff know if you are re-upping with Wasabi, the Next Level Group or will be opting out by February 26 at jmaday@canterburypark.com.

We will be using this method of communication for the next few weeks until transition is made to Wasabi.  The Club Facebook and Twitter feeds will convert over to the Next Level Group – though everyone will be encouraged to follow their progress as well. No decision has been made on the future of the blog at this time.

Good luck this year everyone!

Owner’s Conference Virtual and Free in 2021

I know everyone is looking forward to the Club unveiling and news but we’re not quite there yet – though we are getting closer. In the interim, we wanted to pass along information on the 7th National Thoroughbred Owner Conference.

The series was developed by the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association to try and give owners more information a bigger voice in the industry. The Conference is usually held on site at a major racing venue over several days. This year, for the first time, it is being held on-line and is free to join. All you need to do is register on the page below.

Instead of being a one time, multi-day event, it is going to be held as a series of nine Zoom seminars on the first Tuesday of each month starting on March 2.

Take a look and register if you like. They promise to be wide ranging and informative. Attend as many or as few as interest you.

Seventh National Thoroughbred Owner Conference | Thoroughbred OwnerView

Happy Holidays and 2021

As we round past Hanukkah and barrel into Christmas (along with heavy snow and a blizzard warning for a large part of Minnesota!), we at the Club would like to wish all of our members, friends, family and followers a healthy and happy holiday season and, especially, a soft end of 2020 and a glorious beginning to 2021!

In January we will unveil a “new look” Club and another opportunity for folks that may want more than the Club experience. We have not finalized all the details but we will be working through the holidays to cross the i and ts and and bring you an announcement as soon as possible after the New Year.

While there is not a lot to share at this time, we’re excited about the possibilities and opportunities these will bring to Clubbers – returning and new members alike.

Please be safe through the holidays and we’ll see you on the other side.

Final Accounting and Future

There is some finality and some uncertainty as we move forward, closing up 2020 and looking ahead to 2021.

First let’s do the final accounting for 2020 (spreadsheet attached).

We started the year with 127 members (remember we couldn’t have new members this year) and we finished the year with $25,099.40 or

Drum Roll…..

$197.63 per member!

Not bad! Another win and we may have got to break even. A great job from the Litfin barn getting us a Maiden Special Weight win out of an inexpensive filly, Lilfeatheredindian, who tuned out to have quite a heart (and quite an ROI on our wagering!). Also a great job from the Broberg barn with two wins right off the claim AND making money when Satellite was claimed from us for $1000 more than what we paid.

Also our appreciation to Alonso Quinones, Kelsi Harr, Ry Eikleberry and Betty Jo Williams for riding our horses.

Personally, I’d like to thank each and every one of you for being a part of the Club during a very trying and challenging year. I’m glad we could have many of you out to the track, get you some winners’ circle photos and, hopefully, still had a fun year. However I greatly missed the backside tours and the morning get togethers when I have an opportunity to get to know you all better and we can really feel part of the group.

Going forward the road is a little murky, but we’re looking at how best to tweak the Club in 2021. A BIG part of this is a survey that should have popped into your email today. Please let us know your thoughts – this will go a long way in determining what the Club will look like next year. There is a section to be able to write out your thoughts so if you have any ideas, please go ahead and write out your thoughts if you’d like. Also, some of you that follow along but are no longer Club members could get the survey as well – we really do want your input too.

My (Ted) role is yet to be determined simply because we don’t know what the Club will look like – nothing malicious at all. Jeff, myself and others will put our heads together and see what we can come up with which may or may not include my further participation.

The only reason I even bring it up is because should I depart I may not have the opportunity to thank you all for an absolutely wonderful experience. The last seven years (!) have been great. I’ve enjoyed getting to know you all and sharing my passion for racing and Canterbury Park – easily the best part of the gig! Should I not be part of the Club, I will still be at the track every day running our own groups’ horses, covering the racing and, as always, available to you all via e-mail ted@grevelisracing.com.

Watch this space for more information. After the surveys are returned, tabulated and analyzed, the goal is to get this done and announce the 2021 season at the end of the month/early December so we can be ready for your holiday season gift giving needs!

Closing Up 2020

What. A. Year.

This was definitely something we did not have on our radar back in January when we were starting to get rolling. We had to defer claiming at Oaklawn and put Nevada and Karl in the unenviable position of needing to get a horses right away so we could get some starts in during a pandemic shortened meet.

We didn’t know we could have nay fans until just days before the first race and then state guidance carried us all over the place over the next few months. We tried to get everyone through the best that we could and probably mis-stepped once or twice as well.

Nevada came up with the ingenious solution of partnering with us on two horses, giving us the opportunity to run twice as much for the same investment. Ironically, Furzy was supposed to be the real runner and Lilfeatheredindian the throw in. Boy did we get THAT one backwards!

Karl picked his way through the early entries to grab us Satellite and reeled off two wins before being claimed for $1000 more than we claimed him for. That’s success by anyone’s measure (ICYMI – Satellite won at Remington last week).

The Club ran in its first stakes race which was a hoot and having a $94 winner isn’t something the Club does often Not listening to Ted and placing a wager would have got you most of your fee back – and then some depending upon how much you bet!

We found Furzy a forever home where she is doing great learning to be a jumper. As mentioned, Satellite was claimed and we sold Lilfeatheredindian for $1000. Not having Turf Paradise running really depressed the market for a turf horse that was going to need to be maintained for the winter, but best wishes to her and the new connections.

Here was our running line for the year (money total includes Nevada’s half of Lil):

8 Starts: 3 wins, 0 seconds and 1 third Total Earnings: $29,182

Not a bad year considering all the obstacles and all the credit goes to Nevada and Veronica and Karl and Clemente, their teams in the barn and our jocks (Ry, Alonso and Betty Jo). Under difficult circumstances they all made it work.

At the beginning of October we will receive the last training and vet bills. By the middle of the month we should have all expenses accounted for and we can move to the final reconciliation and accounting and see where we ended up overall. While we weren’t profitable this season we were tantalizingly close. Hopefully we will have an idea of what the 2021 Club will look like at that time as well.

Our thanks go to all of you Clubbers that make this work and make it such an enjoyable experience for everyone. We really appreciate your participation and you patience – especially during this year of uncertainty.

No Race for Lil; Decisions to be Made

Unfortunately there was not a race for Lil the last couple of days of the meet. We could have tried her against the boys in a $10,000 turf sprint or over the dirt against the girls. We toyed with that last one, but it was not a conditioned race meaning that older horses that have won numerous times would be involved in the contest. As a 3-year old, unproven against winners as well as not as good on dirt as she is on turf, meant that she was not going to have much of a chance and we’d be running just for running’s sake. That’s not really fair to the group and certainly isn’t fair to her.

The choices that remain are we can either go to Kentucky and ship into Ohio (She won’t be competitive at Keeneland) or try and get her sold. It is likely that we’ll take the selling route with her, but Nevada and I will discuss this weekend and see what kind of options we have.

What really hurts is the cancellation of racing at Turf Paradise. She’d be a nice filly down there and be able to compete really well all winter. That could end up depressing the possible price on her.

We will hopefully have some news next week on what we’ll do with her as well as start to wrap up the financials and do a wrap up of a unique season. Off the top of my head, I think if we could have picked up one more win we would have ended the 2020 Club in the black.

Lilly 6th

Lilly finished 6th in the $12,500 optional claiming, five furlong turf race last night.

She broke well and Betty Jo Williams was able to keep her off the early pace and settle behind a wall of early speed.  She angled out through the turn for home and had a straight shot for her to come home if she was good enough, but, unfortunately, she was not against this group.

Lilly fought all the way through and she battled to the wire.  The final margin of defeat was only 2 3/4 lengths.  Both were impressive.  I liked the way horse and rider tried hard to beat the 9 but missed by a nose.  The difference between fifth and sixth is about $700.  While that amount makes no difference to the jock, it’s nice that she was trying hard to the end to get it for us.

Nevada will make sure that she came out of the race okay and we’ll look to the last two days of the meet and see if we can get her in one more time.  We’ll be back in the claiming ranks again, hoping for a $7500-$10,000 non-winners of two races lifetime.  If she runs back to today, I think we could stand a chance at picking up one more win photo before the season ends!

Race Preview: Lilfeatheredindian

Lil is going tomorrow evening in a 5F, $12,500 optional claiming race over the turf.  We’re in race 7 with Betty Jo Williams aboard.

We are in for the claiming price of $12,500 even though she is eligible for the allowance condition. We can’t hold on to the horse, the season is ending so why not offer her up? She’s healthy and has heart and that could be attractive to someone.  Or not.  We’ll know more about that around 8 PM!

I will have the last Satellite win picture with me as well as a few more copies of the earlier win photos for folks that did not receive them but wanted them.  I will be just outside the fence outside of number 5 before the race because we do not have paddock access.

Here is the field:

Diva de Kela (Biehler/Arrieta) – While the local product hasn’t won outside of statebred company, she’s come awfully close.  She’ll sit off it and come running late. Moving to the turf for only the second time, the first she finished 9th last year in a state bred allowance.

Lucky Loretta (Berndt/Eikleberry) – Came back off a year layoff to score at $10,000 and just missed by a head last out at this level.  Another that appears to want to come and get them late. Like the rail filly, she is making her second start on the turf, her first was a 7th place finish at Same Houston in 2018 at a much higher level.

Forty Nine Model (Flores/Hernandez) – Three year old has been moving around a little and makes her Canterbury turf debut.  Has flashed early speed and moves back to this level where she ran after being claimed for $20,000, albeit over the dirt.

Tailorbeswift (Richard/Quinonez) – We lost Alfonso to this filly who debuted very sharply in a turf sprint MSW a couple of weeks ago.  Coincidently her Beyer was the same as ours in our maiden breaker (66).  She was on the lead and fought for it throughout the race, winning by one.

LILFEATHEREDINDIAN (LITFIN/WILLIAMS)

Therighttobeararms (Silva/Chirinos) – A winner last out in a $10,000 claiming/$5000 starter last out at 5F leading every step of the way.

Winnager (Robertson/Mawing) – Interesting filly scratched out of our last race, the $10,000 claimer, to enter this race – tougher and no tag.  Mac would not have made this switch if he didn’t feel that she was better than $10,000. Her win was a front running one and could be really tough.

All Native (Litfin/Valenzuela) – Nevada’s other horse (also jilted by Quinonez) should be pressing the pace early.  Ran a similar race to us last out, leading until late and holding on for third, though at a higher level.

Rental Pool (Robertson/Lindsay) – MN bred cutting back out of the Minnesota Oaks where she finished third.  She beat a state bred allowance field over the turf this year but faltered late against open company. She tried to make a run late in the Oaks but was frontrunning at a mile on the turf.

The race should be an interesting one.  There is definitely some speed as well as some real closers.  Several nice horses, especially on the inside, aren’t really turf horses so that should be interesting. The weather looks to be lovely so I can’t envision the race coming off the turf.  Could that lead to a scratch or two? It could – especially if another race is found to enter next Tuesday for some of the “dirt” horses.  However it would not surprise me to have the race stay intact.

Can/will we be on the lead or try and sit off?  Betty will determine that as the race unfolds.  Lil tends to break pretty well and we’re dead in the middle of the field, so hopefully she’ll have some options.  Enough of the speed goes, it wouldn’t be the worst trip in the world to be able to sit behind them and try and make a run.

It’s a pretty tough field, for sure, but – as you’ll see Nevada mention below – she tries hard and we know she’ll give it her all.  And if there is one thing I have seen with Betty riding the last few years – she’ll have the filly in a position to make some noise – the rest will be up to Lilly.

Admission Procedure for Tuesday

With the increased restrictions imposed a few weeks back, we are limited, like we were last race, in the number of folks that we can get in on race day.

If your name falls between, and including, Edwards and Marko, you should have received an email with instructions on how to obtain admission to the track on Tuesday for the race.

There are other ways to come, as we’ve mentioned in previous posts.  You can reserve a table on 3 ($15), space on the apron ($10) or in the simulcast center (free).  You can go the Canterbury website to reserve your spot.

Simulcast area: https://www.canterburypark.com/racing-promotions/simulcast-clubhouse-reservations/

Other spots: https://www.canterburypark.com/racing-promotions/2020-live-racing-season/

The race has come up pretty salty so it’ll be a challenge – but then again so wasn’t her maiden win!

Preview coming up on Monday.