The H.B.P.A. of Alberta is one of the five (5) Provincial Associations that form the H.B.P.A. of Canada. Anyone who becomes licensed as an owner or trainer at an “A” racetrack in Alberta is automatically a member of the Association.
The H.B.P.A. is an organization to provide the horsemen with an authoritative, united voice providing representation in the conduct of racing. The H.B.P.A. serves to protect and maintain the interests of the owners, trainers, and employees who have an investment in the multi-million dollar Thoroughbred Racing industry.
To represent and protect the best interests of Horsemen. To bring about a closer and more understanding relationship between: Members; Racetrack Operators; Horse Racing Alberta; other Racing Associations and the Public.
The H.B.P.A. represents approximately 400 owners and 75 trainers in Alberta, as such the Owners represent over 75% of the membership and have substantial influence on the operation and direction of the Organization.
The HBPA represents the membership in dealings and negotiation with Racetrack Operators on the following matters:
- Purse Contracts
- Facility Improvements
- Safety of horses and humans involved in racing
- To participate with all industry stakeholders in the establishment of proper rules and governance
- Benevolence – endeavoring to provide aid and assistance to Horsemen in need as well as improving the working and living conditions of members and backstretch personnel at the race tracks.
- To be proactive or assist in any movement that will aid or protect the general welfare of the racing industry, the interests of members, their employees and backstretch personnel.
The Alberta office of the H.B.P.A. provides representation in various dealings with industry stakeholders and is the Provider and/or Administrator of various Benefit Plans, Programs, and Initiatives for its Members such as:
- Dental, Eye, Hearing, and Daycare Programs for backstretch workers.
- A comprehensive Liability insurance policy.
- Negotiates Jockey Contracts with the Jockey Benevolent Association of Canada (JBAC).
- Benevolence – Holds Charity Auction/Dinner/Dances, Thanksgiving dinners, and provides financial assistance for those in need.
- Trainer tests in conjunction with Horse Racing Alberta (HRA).
- Representation on the National HBPA in both Canada and the United States pertaining to matters of overall concern.
- Assist in the coordination of major racing events such as the Canadian Derby Festival and the Alberta Fall Classic.
- Participate and provide representation with other industry stakeholders on various HRA Committees including Breed Improvement.
- Provide input and Articles for the Quarterly publication of the Canadian Thoroughbred magazine.
- Negotiate with Racetrack Operators the following:
- Annual Racing Contracts
- Purse and Stakes Schedules
- Racing Dates
- Classification/Conditions of Races
- Simulcast/Intertrack/Off Track Wagering issues
- Operational issues and concerns
- All other matters relating to live racing
- Marketing and Special Event programs
- Work in conjunction with Horse Racing Alberta & the Province on these Matters:
- Allocation of Gaming and all related Revenue
- Long term Strategic Planning
- Rules of Racing
- Testing procedures
- Operational/Facility concerns
- Approval of Racing dates
- Simulcast Wagering
- All wagering conducted Off track
- Community or “B” track racing
- Breed Improvement Program
- Marketing programs
- Dealings with the Alberta Standardbred Horse Association (ASHA) regarding:
- Allocation of Purses between breeds
- Sharing of Simulcast and Intertrack Wagering
- Racing Dates
- Dealings with the Federal Agency – Canadian Pari-Mutual Association (CPMA) regarding:
- Simulcasting/Intertrack Wagering
- Drug regulations
- Lasix Program
- Involvement in areas of specific interest to the racing industry, such as:
- Promotion (Marketing initiatives, media relations, etc.)
- Liaise with the CTHS with respect to specific programs
- Statistical data and Economic Impact of Racing in Alberta
- Exercise Riders and Groom training Schools/Programs
- Membership in TOBA
The preceding should provide some background to the members pertaining to the issues, concerns, and functions handled by the Management and Board of Directors on behalf of the membership. Racing continues to undergo major changes due to competition for the entertainment dollar and alternative forms of gambling, be it Video Lottery Terminals, Bingo, Lotteries, or Casino Gaming. The racing industry must strive to improve the image and professionalism of the sport through our actions, appearance, integrity, and relationships with the; general and betting public, racetrack Operators, and the governing bodies. The H.B.P.A. is addressing these issues to further the benefits to the general membership. We would ask the members cooperation in helping to reach new levels of professionalism and achievement for the Organization and for the industry we represent.