About me and contact information

Tie Break and I desktopI was in kindergarten the first time I went to the track, to see one of my parents’ horses run at Saratoga Harness; a trip to the flats came later, after we moved to Saratoga in 1978.

I started Brooklyn Backstretch in 2007, interrupting a teaching career; what began as a hobby has merged with my life in education to become a second opportunity to do what I love. The educator in me teaches high school English in Brooklyn; the writer in me contributes to Forbes.com, New York Breeder, Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred, The Blood-Horse, The Racing Biz, Hello Race Fans!, Thoroughbred Racing Commentary, and The Saratogian.  My work has also appeared in Daily Racing Form, Thoroughbred Times, and USA Today, and at Belmont Stakes.com and The Rail at the New York Times.

Other appearances: The Track at Saratoga: America’s Grandest Race Course and Only A Game radio.

Memberships and affiliations:  the board of directors for the Belmont Child Care Association, the nominating and voting committees for the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, the historical committee for the Saratoga 150 celebration.

That guy in the photo? That’s Tie Break, a horse to which I developed an unreasonable affection in 2005 when he raced at Aqueduct. He now lives at Akindale Farm in Pawling, New York, a rescue and retirement facility for which I volunteer.

I’m a Brooklyn dweller and an erstwhile and occasional resident of Saratoga Springs, New York. When not teaching or writing, I’m watching the Rangers at the Garden, playing Scrabble, or rescuing cats.

Contact:  teresa@brooklynbackstretch.com. You can also find on Twitter and Facebook.

37 thoughts on “About me and contact information

  1. Teresa,
    What a cool website!! I am a 3 chimmneys fan club member, ex racehorse owner and breeder and proud to still have some of my retires at my small farm in Texas. I’m still obsessed with the sport for the same reason “Romey” fell in love with it. I love ALL animals too.
    I bookmarked your sight so I can check it out and learn and enjoy when I can. Thanks for having it.

    Jarrod Goldberg
    Houston Texas

  2. Great stuff on D. D. Withers. I don’t know when the racing bug bit you, but my bite was the 1968 Belmont Stakes, and has continued ever since. Great to see someone write about racing the way it used to be covered.

    You probably don’t remember Joe Nichols in the NYT, but at the end of the writeup on Saturday’s stakes race Joe would always give a capsule history of how the race came to be named what it was; a shorter version of your Withers story.

    Thus, I learned the Dwyer was named for a pair of Brooklyn brothers who were butchers. On and on. The program also used to list past stakes winners as well, but that’s gone.

    Check the blog Onofframp now and then. I sometimes work in a racing post. Like the recent $2.6 million score on ‘Luck.’

    Will be reading you as well.


    • Thanks, John. Researching history pieces like this, I’ve read a lot of Nichols, and he’s great. If you check the “racing history” tag at the bottom of the post, you’ll find a lot of posts like this one–what a treat it is to go trawling through racing history, and I’ll definitely check out that blog. Thanks for reading and commenting.

  3. Teresa,
    Curious as to what you think of my theory that the Times article from this past Sunday and any that follow as an installment are being instigated at the behest of the Cuomo administration. The letter he wrote to NYRA in the aftermath of the terrible breakdown rate during the inner dirt season made in fairly plain that this was about dollars and cents. The series by the Times seems to me to be a convenient way to convince an all too willing public that slots subsidies for the industry are not only wasteful, but immoral as well. Taking an anti-racing stance hasn’t cost Chris Christie one voter, and the movement is now gaining traction in Ontario also…

  4. Very nice and informative website. I appreciate how much effort and energy goes into keeping a “site” current and interesting.
    Good work – Frank, Rvhd. N.Y.

  5. Question re Rick Dutrow. I understand the NY Court of Appeals refused to hear his appeal so why is he still allowed to train? Thans

  6. Hi Teresa!
    I am friends with Dorothy here in Naples. I hope we can meet when you are down this way. Love your blog – fabulous job. I am a HUGE racing fan…love seeing your insights.

  7. Hi Teresa-
    I’m an antique photography collector and dealer and now and then I mine my early NYC photo collection and prepare an article on some aspect of NYC history for publication in a magazine called “Stereo World.” This magazine is a publication of the National Stereoscopic Association (NSA), a not-for-profit organization of individuals interested in stereoscopic photography. I have a number of stereoviews of Jerome Park and would like to prepare a small article on the topic such as the one you published here and illustrate it with the 10 of so stereoviews I have. If you’d be interested in doing this together please write to my email and let me know. Hope to hear from you.
    best, jk

  8. Hi Teresa:
    First visit.
    A very well-put-together and interesting blog, informative.
    Living on the west coast of Canada I’m more ‘in tune’ with California racing but I certainly like to check in with NY racing and this seems to be the site to get all the info.
    Like most people I’m sure, I enjoy the ‘human interest’ takes.
    You obviously put a lot of time & effort into this and a job well done!
    I’ll be back.

    Ron Logan

    Vancouver BC

  9. Hi Teresa:
    If you do get an opportunity to visit our very beautiful little bullring, I’d recommend letting the track know ‘when’. and your connections to the industry. I’m confident you would get a very sincere welcome.
    GM Raj Mutti is doing great work, getting the younger folks interested in the game. (not too many guys walking around puffing on stogies anymore. Being older, have to admit I miss that)
    Of course, Mario Gutierrez coming from Hastings didn’t hurt :~)
    Hope you get out here at some point.
    All the best

  10. What a fabulous job of writing, intriguing stories and creating a terrific blog. Great performance in all your pursuits, and a woman of integrity!

  11. Hi Teresa,
    I’ve been following Ea, the 9-yr. old gelding with almost 600K in lifetime earnings. He’s entered at Laurel Park tomorrow in a bottom-level $4500 claiming race. He deserves better than this, and really should be retired.
    I know it’s a very long shot at best, but if you hear of any retirement group that would be willing to express some interest in him, that would be wonderful. I know I don’t have all the information I should about him, but he’s been off-form lately, which at his age raises some red flags.
    Thank you, Teresa

  12. Thanks for letting me know, Andrea. I’m on the road for much of today, but will see if there’s anything I can find out. You never know —


  13. Thanks Ms. Genaro! I’m going to be visiting your website often now throughout the year. I’m a Canadian, both my husband have been working with standardbreds for decades up here in Toronto, but are huge thoroughbred race fans. We’ve been to Keenland, Churchill Downs, The Big M. (alot) Gulfstream Park, Calder, and of course our very own Woodbine and the magnificent albeit declining Fort Erie. Also spend 3 glorious days at my husband’s all time fave Saratoga every year. Santa Anita and Del Mar are on our bucket list, and we were happy to have been able to go to Hihalea the last season before it closed. (What a shame!) Seventh race stretch and flying flamingos, what more could you want!
    I found your website by accident while looking up recent info on my all time fave trainer Nick Zito.
    I’m also a huge crazy cat lover, so what a treat to find your website.
    Keep those articles and pictures comming in 2014. I’ve got you bookmarked on my desktop.
    Respectfully yours, Charice

  14. NYRA just hired Lynn LaRocca as Chief Experience Officer (CXO). I want her to succeed both for herself and for NYRA racing fans. In your opinion, what makes a GREAT racetrack experience and what’s needed at NYRA tracks?


    • Hi, Edward–

      I wrote today about LaRocca’s hiring. Great question — lot of ways to answer the question, but I think a decent place to hang out, with decent food and drink at reasonable prices and lots of TVs, is a must.

  15. Pingback: The Wayward Racing Press | around 2 turns

  16. Hi Teresa,I’m new at blogging but I managed to get banned from the paulick report within two weeks.Don’t know exactly why they were vague as to why.I just wanted to say hi and ask you if you know whatever happened to the horse Saratoga Snacks ,I just loved that horse ,he was a hard hitting competitor,especially his Shy Groom Stake win about two years back 106 Beyer off a six month layoff .I know he had physical problems but was wonder how he was doing. Thanks Steve

    • Hi, Steve. I haven’t heard anything about Saratoga Snacks, but I’ll see if I can find anything out, and if I do, I’ll post it here. — Teresa

  17. Hi Teresa,it’s Steve Lore.Thank’s for your quick response.Just wanted to share an opinion I had regarding Exaggerator,It was my opinion that he had injured himself during the running of the Preakness and I felt there were some indicators that I felt confirmed that opinion,two of which were a not so good workout and a poor showing in the Belmont.Not looking to knock the horse or it’s connections but purely from a performance point of view,I think his Haskell looked great visually but I think the performance was not as encouraging as it looked.First I think the connections medically helped him (if I was correct about him getting injured in the Preakness)but I also believe horses with injuries can’t be healed ,they can be temporarily put together for the next start providing he does not abuse the injured part in between starts because I don’t believe you can inject any body part repetively,second he did get his sloppy track on which he excels.Third the connections chose the smaller field.Fourth there was kind of a speed duel up front and the second tier also pressed each other,it did set up for him strategically.I still don’t think he’s going to be anywhere near a hundred percent for his next start .If you get a chance let me know if you sense this or anything else regarding Exaggerator. Thanks, Steve Lore

  18. Just saw your tweets,I know what kind of day this Tuesday is ,I used to work up their for several seasons and a day like today gives you a chance to take a breather and relax a bit,except when start taking notice of some of the things people will do unknowing because these people are unaware of most things other than what’s going on in their life .Darrin,Sinatra,with little baby ducks ,enjoy the rest of the slow day Teresa.Talk to you soon.Oh! I forgot ,on one of my off days up there a few years back,I wandered into the Lyrical Ballad and somehow ended up locked in the vault.It wasn’t that bad ,it was when most of their older horse books were in there.I found a book published around the civil war,it was called The Perfect Horse.I bought it,It cost me a days worth of playing,but I still read it today.Enjoy.

  19. I just saw the twitter regarding the injured horse in July who did not show up in the NYS injury data base .Might you have any idea how this happens,especially to the same horse.Same horse fractures left front then at a later date fractures right front ambulances from the training track on both occasions no record of this horses injury.Another horse gets pulled up in race he can’t walk the next day .Both of these horses avoid the NYS injury and breakdown database and both disappear from sight.Without jumping to any nefarious conclusions.Please give your thoughts.Thanks Steve Lore

  20. Teresa,I wasn’t referring to the horse in July that was not found in the NYS data base.Iwas referring to two other horses .I know horses get turned out ,sometimes after injury.One of the horses I was speaking about was forced to race with two previously fractured legs .Was he suffering ? YES! How do I know that ? The horse could not walk after his races ! This situation was known to Mr.Byrne of the NYS Gaming commission,he was also aware of this horse avoiding the NYS injury data base or any other vets list. He took no action.Something is not right with this process regarding the NYS Gaming Commission or the protocol for these inured horses and breakdowns,aren’t these horses supposed to be listed and if they’re not listed ,why aren’t they .The more I learn about this horse business the more nefarious it gets.There always someone doing something they’re not supposed to be doing. Thanks Steve Lore

    • Hi, Steve. I’m going to include the responses to all your messages here.

      –Without knowing anything about Exaggerator’s medical history, I’d hesitate to offer an opinion. His medical treatments in the days leading up to the Belmont are a matter of public record and posted at the New York State Gaming Commission. He’s a neat horse and I’m hoping that we’ll get to see him here in the Travers.

      –Lyrical Ballad is a wonderful shop, full of terrific finds. Glad you found a book there you love.

      –I haven’t yet received an explanation for why some horses are not in the Gaming Commission’s database. I’m hoping to, and when I do, I’ll continue to write about it.

      • Hi Teresa ,How’s the meet going .Thanks for your responses I appreciate you taking the time ,if you get a chance I responded to your breakdown article RACES Vs. Morning works .I believe mornings if included in the Equine Death rate concerning breakdowns I believe that number might increase by Thirty-Percent if morning works were included

      • I believe racing officials are blaming the track surfaces for break downs I think their looking at the wrong reason .They first have to admit to themselves what they already know it’s not the surface.This will never happen because it would take too much TRANSPARENCY and this business of horse racing would not survive with transparency.It seems like it’s on the brink as it is ,transparency would further damage it,they for sure aren’t going to let that happen.Thanks Steve Lore.

  21. Teresa,try Mr.Terry Byrne N.Y.S. Gaming Commission,he is their field inspector ,if you need any info. Contact him.He’s got the answers,probably including Saratoga Snacks,The Big Deluxe and others too many to mention here .Where are these horse’s that get seriously injured,disappear are not recorded in the Injury And Breakdown Data Base,they just seem to vanish with no record of any injury.This lack of transparency leads me to suspect something nasty and underhanded is going on.If racing wants the public trust there should not be this suspect activity.This has happened to Saratoga Snacks twice before ,two broken bones patched up with pins,plates and screws,lots of time off ,then abused more by returning to the races .I know he was abused and he suffered because he could not walk after his races.I had informed NYS gaming Mr.Bryrne and he got very defensive, and continued to let the horse race.Saratoga Snacks was entered about 3 months ago and scratched and haven’t seen him since I just hope the worst didn’t happen.Mr. Terry Byrne TELE: 516-488-1920.I tried and got nowhere! Maybe you’ll have better luck if not let me know I’ll try again.My number 516-448-1245 or slore42@verizon.net I would like to discuss another issue with you regarding this in private not in this. Steve Lore

    • Hi, Mary — Just taking a little social media break. Will be back at some point soon. Hope you are well, and thanks so much for getting in touch — Teresa

  22. I hear that. Find myself just scanning these days, trying to avoid — well, a lot of it. Glad your break is just that and not a departure. Have a happy holiday.

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