The New York Thoroughbred Breeders, Inc. (NYTB) presented its two annual scholarships in the winner’s circle after the first race at Saratoga Race Course on Friday. Each scholarship is worth $5,000 and recognizes a full-time student currently enrolled in an equine-related undergraduate course of study at an accredited college or university in New York State. The presentation took place on the New York Racing Association’s sixth annual College Day presented by Toyota.
Nicolina Foti received the inaugural Debby Malloy Winkler New York Thoroughbred Breeders, Inc. Scholarship. Making the presentation was NYTB Director and Secretary/Treasurer Mrs. Vivien Malloy, owner of Edition Farm and New York’s top breeder in 2011. Malloy created the scholarship this year to honor her daughter Debby, an accomplished show jumper-rider in North America and Europe who lost her life in 2011 following a tragic fall from her horse at her home in Warendorf, Germany.
Foti, a sophomore Animal Science major at SUNY Cobleskill, recently began work at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital in Saratoga and hopes to attend a top veterinary program after graduation. Foti’s parents John and Paula, cousin Hannah Feldman and best friend Marissa Breault also attended the presentation ceremony.
Foti said, “I would like to say that I am honored and very thankful to be chosen for this scholarship. I want to thank the amazing people I work for, who are like family, and my amazing family and friends. These are the people who got me to where I am today.”
Kaitlyn Douglas received the third annual Gerald A. Nielsen, Sr. New York Thoroughbred Breeders, Inc. Scholarship. Making the presentation was NYTB Director Mrs. Joanne Nielsen, the owner of Sunnyfield Farm, who created the scholarship in honor of her husband. Gerald Nielsen operated Sunnyfield Farm in Bedford with his Mrs. Nielsen from 1976 until he passed away in 2004 early in his third term as President of NYTB. Joanne and Gerald Nielsen were voted top breeders in the state in 1991 and 2001. Present with his mother in the winner’s circle was Gerald Nielsen, Jr., who said, “We still miss my father every day.”
Douglas, a senior Thoroughbred Race Management major at Morrisville State College, plans on entering the Thoroughbred breeding industry upon graduation and aspires to become a broodmare manager.
Accompanied at the ceremony by her parents Ron and Janet, Douglas said, “I cannot express how honored I am to be receiving the Gerald A. Nielsen, Sr. Scholarship. It will be a tremendous help towards finishing my Bachelors’ Degree at Morrisville State College and achieving my career goals.” Douglas continued, “Horse racing has already played a huge part in my life and I look forward to making it my career. I would like to thank NYTB for choosing me as this year’s scholarship recipient.”