Category Archives: Equine/Horse

Horse Racing Industry

Guest speaker Mark Davis presented the class with a lecture on the horse racing industry in Delaware.  To me the most surprising and interesting fact was that horse racing has been around for centuries with little change overtime.  This is interesting because when you compare it to a sport like baseball, which has been around over a hundred years, it shows how much longer horse racing has existed.  There are a considerable amount of people involved in the horse industry, with about four and a half million people in the industry. The industry has a thirty nine billion dollar direct impact annually, which shows how lucrative it can be.  It was also surprising how much regulation goes into horse racing with different involved parties having to be licensed. The horses also must undergo go urine tests and blood tests for their protection and to ensure that no one is cheating. A lot of this regulation is because of the money that the industry generates, with statistics showing that the horse racing industry contributes about 182 million to the Delaware economy.

The Horse Racing Industry with Mark Davis

For one of our classes, we had the privilege to listen o Mark Davis guest lecture on the horse industry in Delaware. He started out by giving some history on the sport of horse racing and how it has been around, in different forms, for hundreds of years. It was interesting to learn how to standards, rules, and regulations have changed over the years. Now, horse racing is very heavily regulated to ensure not only the safety of the horse, but the rider as well. I was very surprised when Mark pointed out that the horse industry’s a $39 billion effect on the US economy annually. That is a lot of money. Afterwards, he dove more directly into the history of horse racing in DE which started in the 1760’s.  Since than, he explained how many different commissions have formed as well as how to industry grew in DE.

Mark also talked a bit about the value of the Standardbreds and Thoroughbreds that are mainly used in the different types of racing. I can’t say that I was surprised to learn they are valued on average at $15,000-$20,000. I know the genetics of a good race horse can be highly valued, it is crazy to think that there are horses valued at even higher numbers. However, Mark showed us that if you own a good race horse you can win a decent amount of money on that investment.  All that’s said and done, the horse industry as a whole provides many job opportunities but also a way for higher income people to invest their money. The horse racing industry can range from being utilized as an investment tool, a job for some, or just a recreational event for others to watch.

Horse Racing with Mark Davis

One of the oldest sports known to man, and once one of the most popular sports in the United States, horse racing is nothing less of a lost art in today’s society.  Mark Davis came in and talked to us about the industry, which surprisingly has a direct economic effect on the US of $39 billion annually. Of the 9,222,847 horses in the United States, 844,531 of them are dedicated to racing.  In the state of Delaware today, horse racing remains a relatively popular sport. Dating all the way back to 1760, the first racing facility was built in Newark, and the industry took off from there. It was super cool listening to Mr. Davis talk about his direct involvement in the industry, and his call to action in getting involved and educating ourselves and the people around us about horsing racing.  He went into detail about how the catalogues are read, ways of betting, and the different kinds of racing and horses involved. He shared tons of statistics with us and it was all around a really interesting lecture, one that I had no previous background knowledge on.

Delaware Horse Racing Industry with Mark Davis

Racing is a pastime that has existed since man began to ride horses. This pastime has become a sophisticated sport that financially supports thousands of jobs around the world. Harness racing is a sport in which the horse is hooked up to a cart where the driver is seated. Harness racing is a prevalent part of the Delaware horse industry. In 1945, the Delaware Harness Racing Commission was established. Dover Downs is an establishment where some of the Delaware harness races take place. In order to have a successful harness horse, owners will hire grooms, drivers, and trainers. The hired staff will care for and work with the horse to have it prepared for races. If a horse wins a harness race, the owner receives 50% of the total amount of money offered for the race. 10% of the owner’s earnings from a race are given to the trainer and the driver. Over time, the popularity of harness and thoroughbred races have gone down, this decrease in public interest prompted the Delaware government to pass a law allowing casinos to be established in the state. The casinos can only be established along with a racetrack. This law sparked the public’s interest and caused more people to come out to the horse races. Some of the earnings from these casinos are offered as a breeder’s fund, to encourage people to raise and breed horses in the state of Delaware. Since the establishment of this law, the industry has gained a steady income. Harness races occur on 180 days of the year, and 2300 races within the racing period. Beyond owning, grooming, and training race horses, there are other career opportunities in this industry. Veterinarians are utilized to ensure the health and welfare of the horses, as well as check for the presence of performance enhancing drugs, such as  EPO. Veterinarians check the race horses for these drugs at the track before and after a race, as well as random checks throughout the year on the farm. EPO is a drug that enhances the blood’s ability to carry oxygen, thereby enhancing the sport performance of the horse. I look forward to attending a harness race in the future. Thank you to Mark Davis for sharing information on the Delaware horse racing industry with AGRI 130 students.

Horse Racing Industry – Mark Davis

Growing up I always loved horses. When I was young my cousin brought my brother and I to Delaware Park and I was just fascinated to watch the races. I knew there was a lot more to the horse racing industry than what people talked about or knew but listening to Mark Davis was interesting. He started out by giving a brief overview of the industry such as William DuPont Jr. designed Delaware Park. He also told us about lower Delaware and during the late 1960s Harrington raceway and Dover Downs was built. Thoroughbreds race about 80 days a year while the harness racing has 180 days. I knew that before and after a race both the horses and the jockeys get series of drug tests to see if they had extra boosters in their system to help them perform better like EPO. There are approximately 23 EPO testing that can be done but the horses only get tested on three. There are also several people involved within the industry such as judges, investigators (people who are retired state troopers), veterinarians, breathalyzer techs, and etc., each with their own unique jobs. What I didn’t know was that in harness racing you need to have a license. These people consist of owners, trainers, drivers, groomers, vendors and track employees.

The Race Horse Industry with Mark Davis

Listening to Mark Davis talk about horse racing really hit home for me. I have grown up around horse racing and have loved it each and every time I go to the track to watch a race. One thing I did not know about the horse racing industry is that it is on the decline. Not only are less people getting into the racing community, but people seem to be less interested in it. As of 1989, horse racing was the second most widely sports attended event right behind baseball. At one point in time the economic effort of horse racing was a 39 billion dollar industry. This effects each and every part of the industry, from purses to amount of horses actively racing. In the recent years, all of these statistics have been decreasing. Mark began telling us about some statistics done in 2004, and at that time there were 9.2 million horses in the United States alone, and over 2 million people owned horses. One stigma in the US is that only people of wealth have horses but according to this 2004 data, 75% of horse owners make 25,000 to 75,000 dollars annually. Now that less people are entertained by the idea of the horse racing industry effects not only the drivers, owners, and horses but the economic activity in Delaware as well. In the near years a big hope according to Mark, is to not only slow the decline but to hopefully turn it around and increase all things in the economic activity and all that are involved in the horse race industry.

Mark Davis Horse Racing Industry Lecture

Mark Davis was very passionate about the horse racing industry. It was really interesting to hear him talk about how important the industry is. I, personally, am not a big fan of horses (for some reason hey scare the bejesus out of me) so to hear that the industry in 2014 totaled $182 million to Delaware’s economy along with providing 1500 jobs was just amazing to me. I never realized how many people went to horse races, bet on them, raised horses, trained them, and rode them. It all started back in the era of the Crusades when they brought back Arabian Stallions which were built unlike any other horse we had known up until that time. By 1530 we had had our first horse race in England. Today, horse racing is a big part of Delaware but sadly it is decreasing around the rest of the country. Delaware Horse Racing Redevelopment passed to revive the horse racing industry back in 1994 which is why horse racing has been growing in Delaware once again. We need to realize the importance of horse racing and bring it back into the lime-light.

The Horse Racing Industry

Mark Davis presented the lecture on The Horse Racing Industry in Delaware.  As soon as I saw the powerpoint on this topic I instantly thought of my dad. My dad used to spend his free weekends at a race track and I always wondered why I couldn’t go with him.  Now I understand that it’s not the type of race track that I thought it was where you can interact and ride the horses, instead it’s a place where adults go to place bets on horses. Of course, there’s more to just that but I wasn’t aware of everything that goes into this industry until this lecture.   I thought it was interesting seeing the breakdown of the money purses.  I always have associated the top three winners to win some type of share of the prize but the horse industry rewards the top 5.  However, with all the money that is involved, I learned that this is why people in the industry have the incentive to cheat.  After this lecture I made sure to tell my dad about it, I was hoping I could tell him something he wouldn’t know about the industry but he knew it all.

Who doesn’t love horses?

In Delaware, the horse racing is a large industry. Horse racing dates back to 1760 where the first racing facility was built in Newark, DE. Today, Harrington Raceway is the oldest continuously operating harness racing track in the country. In Delaware we race Harness and Thoroughbred.

Harness racing is when there is a cart and rider behind the horse. Harness racing in Delaware happens about 200 days of out the year, with approximately 2,300 races. Whereas thoroughbred is when there is a jockey on the back of the horse and is typically raced 80 days out of the year, with about 600 races.


This industry is highly regulated. You must have a license to race and they only hand out 2,000 a year in Delaware. These licenses go to owners, trainers, drivers, groomers, vendors and track employees. Regulations include overseeing the race, tracks, paddocks, safety, welfare, and testing on both the racer and the horse. Testing can occur at any time and any substance can be tested.

Now we are talking money. In 2014, the horse racing industry total contribution to the Delaware economy was nearly $182 million, including the support of 1,540 jobs. It is great to know that every $100 spent by a horseman, tracks, agencies and associations results in $182 of total spending in Delaware. For each race the 1st place owner receives 50% of the purse, 2nd place owner is 25%, 3rd place owner gets 12%, 4th place gets 8% and 5th place gets 5%. While the driver of the winning horse get 5% and trainer gets 5%. The average purse for harness racing is $50,000. Be sure to stop by a local raceway and see a race for yourself!

Guest Lecture: Mark Davis – Horse racing industy

Mark Davis’ guest lecture to our class about the horse racing industry in Delaware was very interesting and informative. He gave us a lot of information about the economics and history of horse racing. I was previously unaware that the first equine racetrack in Delaware was built in Newark in the 1760’s. Horse racing was also the second most popular sport behind baseball until about 1989! We learned about the big difference between thoroughbreds and and harness horses in the racing industry. Harness horses can race much more frequently than thoroughbreds, because their bodies are able to handle it. From an economic stand point, horse racing brings in over $180 million yearly. dollars and creates over 1,500 jobs. Horse racing in Delaware is now highly dependent on casinos, which have been introduced at racetracks and bring in many patrons. Overall, this guest lecture was extremely interesting and informative. I am a fan of horse racing and was glad to learn more about it.

Guest Speaker: Mark Davis

Mark Davis was a very unique guest lecture! I did not have any prior knowledge of the Horse Racing Industry whatsoever. I especially did not know the deep roots that the equine industry has in the state of Delaware. I found Mark Davis’s lecture to be fascinating, and fun. I never thought of the horse Racing Industry has an economically beneficial industry. I thought the exact opposite, that people go to the horse races to gamble, and most of the time waste/lose their money. Gaining knowledge about the Horse Racing Industry showed me that many businesses that you overlook, are the backbones of local economies. I did not realize just how influential the horse racing industry is, especially when paired with the casinos. I also enjoyed learning about the regulations. It is comforting to know that the industry works incredibly hard to prevent possible cheating. I did not realize how strict rules and drug tests are administered. They even fine people for different activities! I am happy to have heard Mark Davis speak, he gave me insight to an industry that I was not exposed to before hand!

Horse Racing

This was the most interesting lecture that I had the opportunity to listen to.  Not knowing the details behind the industry I found that Mark Davis was a very intriguing and knowledgeable person.  I discovered through this lecture that horse racing is one of the oldest sports and as well very popular.  The horse racing industry brings in $39 billion annually and effects the U.S. economy greatly.  Horse racing in Delaware dates back to 1760’s where the first racing facility was built in the town of Newark.  Following this commissions were established and as well numerous racetracks were created.  What really shocked me was how much horse racing  impacted Delaware,  bringing in $182 million and creating 1,540 jobs.   Delaware’s Equine Industry ranks third nationally and as well brings in $280 million each year.   The horse racing industry is quite prominent and impacts Delaware significantly.

Delaware’s Horse Racing Industry- Mark Davis

Listening to Mark Davis speak about the horse racing industry was definitely interesting and he was able to easily keep my attention. Learning about the horse industry is definitely something I didn’t think I would be so engaged in, but I was extremely engaged with him as he lectured. Learning about the difference between harness racing and thoroughbred racing was something I had never heard about and I was intrigued because of how often I hear about Dover Downs and other horse racing casinos. I also did not know how important casinos are to the overall economic stability of Delaware. Learning about all of this allows me to understand a little more of the agriculture industry and a little more about Delaware’s economics . Not only are casinos important to the economy, but without casinos, the horse racing industry would probably be on a decline.

The Horse Racing Industry

Growing up with grandparents that owned racehorses I loved going to Harrington to watch them race. While its not as popular today Horse Racing used to be a huge industry in Delaware. Mark Davis spoke to the class about how the horse racing industry has changed overtime and the economic impacts on Delaware. Horse racing is actually one of the oldest sports and was brought to America by the British.

Mr. Mark Davis talked about the different types of horse racing, Thoroughbred and Harness racing. Harness racing is much more common with about 2300 races a year compared to only 600 a year for Thoroughbred.

Horse Racing has about a $182 million impact on Delawares economy. It also supports about 1540 jobs. The horse racing industry is another great example of careers in agriculture and animals. I throughly enjoyed this lecture because it was a topic I didn’t know much about except for watching the sport growing up.

UD Ag Farm

During our visits to the UD Ag Farm we were fortunate enough to visits a variety amount of sites, such as where cows are milked, where the calfes are housed, horse barn, sheep barn, cattle pen, followed by a delicious treat at the UD Creamery. Scott Hopkins, the head director for UD’s Ag farm on the newark farm was who led us throughout the day, explaining in great detail at every stop we made. Some interesting facts about the farm include such things as the farm be 350 acres, 80-85 cows, calf’s are housed in small little houses for a certain amount of time, and also all the ice cream comes from the farm. After finishing the tour you could really sense that Scott is very passionate about what he does and that he cares about teaching young people, us, which is our country’s future. One of the best parts of the trip was the creamery, which was the best ice cream ive ever had, and I definitely intend on stopping in again.