05/28/2008 11:00PM

Pete Aiello new River Downs announcer

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The River Downs announcer's booth has graduated nationally known race-callers Mike Battaglia, Terry Wallace, and Kevin Goemmer. Beginning Tuesday it will be the new home of Pete Aiello.

A graduate of the University of Arizona's Race Track Industry Program, the 22-year-old Aiello is currently the assistant racing secretary at Prairie Meadows.

Aiello has hosted track selection shows, and has been an odds-maker and backup announcer from Canada to Arizona, with assignments at Finger Lakes in New York; Evergreen Park in Grande Prairie, Alberta; and five tracks in Arizona.

"As much as I've enjoyed all of my jobs in racing, I has always felt my place in the game is that of an announcer," said Aiello.

Ed Vomacka, the director of racing at River Downs, said a man with Aiello's experience "is going to be a be a big plus to the racing office with his familiarity of all aspects of racing."

River Downs marketing director Ed Meyer has been the interim track announcer for the past several weeks.

"It's been fun for the most part," Meyer said. "Nobody is going to confuse me with Tom Durkin, but I held my own."

* Saturday will be the 20th annual Cincinnati Therapeutic Riding and horsemanship event. Held in the paddock area, disabled children will be joined by volunteers and jockeys to showcase their riding skills and therapeutic interaction with the horses. The event is scheduled to begin at 11:15 a.m. Montgomery Inn Ribs will provide a free lunch to all volunteers and participants.