08/18/2014 2:54PM

N.Y. horsemen match charitable donations


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – The New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association announced that it will match donations for the Lustgarten Foundation, which funds research for pancreatic cancer, and for paralyzed jockey Michael Straight raised during autograph sessions at Saratoga earlier this month.

“It was inspiring to see how many trainers and jockeys took time out from dizzying schedules during the Saratoga meet to lend their support,” said NYTHA president Rick Violette Jr. “The fans were great too. It’s only natural that NYTHA would step up to do its part.” 

More than two dozen trainers participated in an autograph session Aug. 10 in an event paying tribute to the memory of Dominic Galluscio, the popular New York trainer who died after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer this year. The event raised $4,174 for the Lustgarten Foundation.

Trainer Gary Gullo, the catalyst behind the memorial for Galluscio, said, "It was a great turnout. I was really proud of everyone involved. How often to you get the trainers all together like that? The owners, the trainers, the jockeys, the fans, NYRA and NYTHA – It just shows you people really do have a lot of heart when it comes to things like this."

One week later, the Saratoga jockey colony raised $2,927 for Straight, who was paralyzed from the chest down after a spill at Arlington Park five years ago.