Arcadia, CA – The Del Mar horse crowd dug deep into their pockets on July 18th to raise money for retired racehorses at CARMA’s (California Retirement Management Account) 8th Annual “CARMA Cares Charity Fundraiser. After a day of unseasonable stormy weather, including several hours of rain, “Cards 4 CARMA”, held at the Del Mar Hilton Hotel, was enjoyed by more than 150 owners, trainers, jockeys and fans. The evening included live music, provided by Eric Auckerman’s West Coasters Band, a silent auction, a charity Texas Hold’Em poker tournament and various card games.
Elizabeth Ellis was this year’s winner of the Texas Hold‘Em style poker tournament. Cheered on by fiancé Joe Talamo and many racetrack regulars, she prevailed over what appeared to be a group of seasoned poker players with enthusiasm. Many poker players lingered to cheer her on and to see how the tournament would end, and were able to enjoy the other casino-style games while waiting.
“So many people donated items for the auction, purchased tickets, and sponsored the event this year,” said Lucinda Mandella, CARMA’s Executive Director. “We could not put together such a fun event and raise these kinds of dollars without the support of our entire community – owners, trainers, jockeys, agents, sponsors and volunteers.”
CARMA Founder, Madeline Auerbach, expressed her gratitude for all the support given by the racing industry. “We are so thankful for the support we receive from everyone each and every year. They make it possible for us to help so many horses.”
This year’s grand prize, a Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino weekend package including hotel, dinner and theater tickets was generously donated by MGM Resorts International. Additional sponsors included Madeline Auerbach, Bardy Farm, David Bienstock, Bruce Chandler Racing, CTBA, Daily Racing Form, Double J H Stables, Rick & Marcia Gold, Harris Farms, Havens Bloodstock, Jay Em Ess Stable, Liberty Road Stable, Little Red Feather Racing Club, Narvick International, Pamplemousse Grille, Rancho San Miguel, Jim & Janet Rome, Santa Anita Park, TVG-Betfair, Westrux International, and Chuck Winner.
All CARMA donations will be used to help care for retired racehorses whose careers have ended after competing in California Thoroughbred races. Through a detailed grant process, facilities that care for these Thoroughbreds may apply for funding on an annual basis. Last year, CARMA awarded more than $500,000 to a variety of charities that retire, retrain, and re-home former Thoroughbred racehorses. After such a successful fundraising event, CARMA is looking forward to the grant process which begins in September. The 2015 grants will be presented during the Santa Anita Winter race meet.
CARMA (California Retirement Management Account) is a charitable 501 (c)(3) organization formed to assist Thoroughbred rehabilitation and retirement organizations that facilitate the care and retraining of horses who raced in California and whose racing careers have ended. CARMA ensures the racehorses have retirement options by managing and disbursing funds to qualified retirement facilities caring for such horses.