01/23/2016 2:47PM

Kutlenios re-elected to lead Michigan HBPA


George Kutlenios was elected to his third term as president of the Michigan Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association, a position he has held since 2012.

Kutlenios, a resident of Holly, Mich., campaigns his runners with his wife, Chrissy, under the name Red Riding Hood Stables.

Kutlenios said one of the key issues of his two-year term will be ensuring the approval of Senate Bill 504 in the state legislature to update various sections of the Michigan Horse Racing Act of 1995, which lays out much of the groundwork for the state’s racing operations.

Specifically, Kutlenios addressed the importance of a breed-specific distribution model for the state’s simulcast purse pool funds that would devote all applicable monies generated through wagering on Thoroughbred races toward the Thoroughbred purse pool and all Standardbred monies toward that breed. Under the current system, Thoroughbred simulcast monies are split evenly between the two breeds, while harness simulcast funds are divided 65-35 in favor of the Standardbreds.

“Our goal is to increase the number of days and the purse structure at Hazel Park,” he said. “We still have a long way to go to make Michigan racing at least viable for the people still participating in the sport.”

Trainer James Jackson lost the election for president to the incumbent.

Lisa Campbell, Douglas “Bobby” Barron, and Christi Flores were elected to two-year board terms.