Board of Directors

My main profession is the management of various global business interests. I hold a Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts Degrees in Economics from West Virginia University and a Juris Doctorate from the
University of Tulsa. I own a small farm in Jefferson County and I am actively involved, along with my wife Terry, in racing, breeding and sales. I believe I bring a thorough understanding of all aspects of Thoroughbred racing to the CTHBPA.

As a current member of the Board, I am proud to say that we havemade positive changes and progress in dealing with issues which effect horseman and have improved the management of our responsibilities
of the CTHBPA. However, there remains much for us to do in the coming years. Racing and breeding has been under attack which has undercut the foundation of the Thoroughbred industry in West Virginia. The
next legislative session will be key to returning the industry in West Virginia to a sustainable business which we can grow and invest in for the future. The CTHBPA is in negotiations with the Track on a new agreement. I believe I have the experience and knowledge to help guide the CTHBPA again through these negotiations.

My main goals should I be elected President are: (1) to get the legislative changes which increases our purse
amounts on a stable and more sustainable basis to encourage owners to race at Charles Town Races; (2) to engage the membership and get active participation from our members to improve racing; (3) to work with the
Track to improve the Condition Book to maximize the number of races available to Horseman; (4) to improve
the rules and regulations regarding due process with the WVRC; (5) to actively market and promote racing and
breeding in West Virginia; (6) to improve our proactive stance regarding unreasonable medication rules; (7) to
improve membership access to timely information addressing their concerns.

Joe Funkhouser
Owner

 I seek to enhance long term stability and growth to the West Virginia thoroughbred industry, which guides my decision-making process.  Too often, I have witnessed a divide and conquer strategy against horsemen and women delay or stop needed improvements. 
 
I am an attorney, first elected to the CTHBPA Board in 2012, when I pledged to form a trade association for live racing interests and pass an ADW law for West Virginia to increase purses.  It took a few years, but I helped to form and lobbied for West Virginia Racing United – trade association for CTHBPA, Mountaineer HBPA, WVTBA and the Jockey’s Guild, to work in unison to enhance the industry by prioritizing shared goals.  We may not agree on every detail of every issue but communicating and prioritizing shared goals and working in unison on that agenda to improve the industry, enhance funding and educate legislators on the importance of the industry has proven successful.  I pledged in 2018 to work to restore the purse funds of $11 million diverted to the Workers’ Compensation fund since 2005 (a top priority and shared goal of stakeholders).  In 2019 and 2020 both the ADW law and restoration of $11 million in purse funds passed in West Virginia through a team effort over many years.
 
If reelected, I pledge to continue to pursue shared goals and to work with CTHBPA members and stakeholders for the betterment of the industry through values of transparency, accountability, and integrity.  One of these shared goal priorities which I pledge to work towards is repealing the “haircut” bill, which took 10% of purses and destabilized the purse fund. 

Richard Knapp
Owner


I have been a small-scale owner and breeder at Charles Town since 1978. While my primary residence is in Reston, Virginia, in 2001 I purchased a second home in Charles Town in order to spend more time at the races and with my horses.

In 2009, I was appointed to the Board of Trustees of the hospitals in Charles Town and Martinsburg and served until 2017. I understand how boards operate and can work…and how important they can be. I currently serve as the treasurer of the HBPA Board.

I support fundamental fairness for all horsemen. In addition, we need to improve communication with all horsemen. The continually improving website is a good start in that direction. Now we need to use the website to be sure all horsemen are fully informed and to provide a forum for communication and ideas from all horsemen.

We need to continue and intensify our efforts both in Charleston and throughout the state to support year-round live racing. It is imperative that we continue to fight to ensure that our purse money can remain healthy and competitive. Finally, we need to attract more horses for our races and address some operational and facility issues of long-standing concern.  

Naomi Long
Owner

I have served on the HBPA Board of Directors for three years and have assisted with personnel and marketing as well as filled in as needed. I have traveled to Charleston on many occasions and represent the horsemen at Charles Town and help coordinate events that will entice legislators to visit our track, to see our racing industry and its impact on our community.

By profession, I am a retired Magistrate where I demonstrated a skill set that included making decisions, collaborating with various stakeholders, and communicating decisions in a timely manner. I live in Berryville, where I operate Longshot Farm and am involved in both racing and breeding Thoroughbred horses. As an owner of race horses stabled at Charles Town, I have witnessed many changes over the past 40 years. I have been actively engaged in the Charles Town Horsemen’s Assistance Fund since 2011 and am currently serving as President.

Currently serving on the CTHBPA Board of Directors, I have attended all HBPA meetings and have heard discussion first-hand how our current board members and other stakeholders have planned to generate more public support for our racing endeavors. I am running for the HBPA Board again because, like many owners, I am concerned about the impact of decreased racing days on the racing community and the future of horse racing in our area.  

Tony Stehr
Owner

I have lived in Jefferson County since 1970, and graduated from Jefferson High School in 1974. My parents Hank and Betty Stehr have had racehorses all my life, moving from track to track in the Midwest before buying a farm in Jefferson County in 1970, operating the farm, breeding and racing since then. I’ve been involved in Thoroughbred racing as an Owner or Trainer since 1976, having raced in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland. My wife Linda and I cur-rently have six horses in training at Charles Town with her being the trainer.
I understand what it takes as far as time and money to run a small stable. I be-lieve that year round racing is needed for an operation like this to continue and would do what I could to see that we continue to have year round racing.

Cristina Vena-Mosby
Owner
Cristina became involved in the Thoroughbred racing industry in 2006, when she bought her first thoroughbred, in West Virginia. Throughout the years she has been involved in several partnerships as owner and breeder. She has recently pur-chased a farm in Shenandoah Junction, which includes a barn for her horses. Cristi-na has always utilized and supported local trainers, breeders, and owners. She holds owner licenses in seven different states, including West Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania and California. Stee-plechase is a favorite of Cristina’s. She is as passionate about the sport of horse racing as she is about the after-care of the horses. Ms. Vena has great interest in representing her fellow horse owners. Some of her main con-cerns are track condition and maintenance, sporting event attendance, purse allotment, and increased participa-tion in the creation of the condition book. Ultimately, she wants to strengthen the overall West Virginia Racing Program.

Dennis Bybee
Owner Alternate
Dennis L. Bybee has been studying, breeding, and raising horses since his graduation from Fresno State College (FSC) in 1965 as a teacher of HS mathematics and science. Dennis learned the basics of equine science in the Agriculture Department at FSC and on FSC’s 400 acre quarter horse farm where he gained practical experience
breaking and training young horses to the halter and on the ground with long lines. Later, Dennis bred several registered American Saddlebred horses and showed them in hand at local and state-wide breeder’s shows in California.

In 1990s, Bybee rode a lovely Thoroughbred grand-daughter of Nasrullah named “Pickin’ Cotton” in hunter and dressage classes at shows throughout the state of Virginia with major success in shows at Quantico, Warrenton, and Lexington. In 1992, Bybee was named the Champion Training-level Rider in recognized competitions by
the Northern Virginia Dressage Association (VADA-NOVA).
Since 2008 in WV, Bybee has owned/managed Bybee Road Farm on Avonwood at Kabletown with 4 stallions
(Despite the Odds, Aaron’s Way, Monster Mass, and Three Chopt Road) and 45 broodmares. Each year, BRF
produces and sells about 12 registered WV-bred foals to owners/trainers in WV. For the last few years, BRF has
owned and raced several WV-bred horses in the Mid-Atlantic region (incl. Boppin Rocket - a Stakes-placed Winner and Fappiano Boy - a G1 winner in the Dominican Republic and current winners: Three bops, Rocket Thunder, and Chopra.)

In 2018, Bybee was elected to the BOD of the WVTBA and has served as the Secretary for the BOD for the past
year. In September of 2021, Bybee resigned from the WVTBA in order to run for the BOD of the CTHBPA.

Peter Wainwright
Owner Alternate

I was raised in Malton, England. My family has a long history of being in the Thoroughbred horse racing industry. My father was a jockey and then a trainer. Both of my brothers are trainers, with one in England and the other in New Zealand. I worked alongside my father and siblings helping in the stables. I also worked for a
few years on Thoroughbred breeding farms in the UK. I moved to the United States in 1988 after completing University. I have owned multiple race horses as well as breeding race horses. I am an avid supporter of the horse racing industry.

Ronney Brown
Owner/Trainer

Hi, my name is Ronney Brown. I, along with my wife and best friend, Nicole, operate our racing stable and breeding farm. We currently have three stallions. We stand Bullsbay, Vorticity, and our newest guy, Talent Search. My main goals as a member of the HBPA board in today’s climate is to have a strong breeders program, a strong aftercare program, a fair condition book and a balanced racing schedule. We also need a great working relationship with racetrack management for special events and owner perks. By expanding these ideas, we can make racing profitable for everyone involved. These are my main goals to accomplish as board member. 

Tim Grams
Owner/Trainer

My wife and I own and operate a small breeding operation in the Charles Town area. We also run a public racing stable that consists of about 30 horses. I moved to Charles Town in the early 1990’s and invested in this community because I believe in the future of the Thoroughbred industry in Jefferson County.

My first experience in the Thoroughbred business began when I started working with two-year olds in Maryland.
I’ve worked on the starting gate for 3 years and as an outrider for 3 years. I trained for over 20 years at Charles Town, Laurel Park, Penn National and Delaware Park. 

John McKee
Owner/Trainer


My roots are well-established in Jefferson County having been an owner, trainer and breeder for over 40 years and I have faithfully and successfully served in this capacity under prior administrations.

As a horseman, alongside Senator Herb Snyder, I fought in the halls of Charleston to save our essential 10-10-10 (now Supplemental Award) program and years ago was part of the political vanguard that established the West Virginia Development Fund.

As a farmer, I know the significance of our beloved “Green Space” and how important it is to continue the relationship between Thoroughbred horse racing and the management at Charles Town Races. Without live year-round racing, jobs in this community will be lost eventually creating an environment for our families to suffer financial hardships.

Crystal Pickett
Owner/Trainer

I have been riding horses since I was 4 years old and have been in love with horses ever since! I grew up in Maryland and first started galloping and breaking babies at 17. I rode show horses my entire childhood and still ride in the OTTB shows to support these amazing animals. I have been training on my own for 13 years and love the horse racing game. I have been racing at CT for my entire career and have had stalls on the grounds for 10 years. While developing my career as a TB trainer I have managed to marry my husband, Greg and raise 4 beautiful children. So I am prepared to work hard for the horsemen and always keep their best interests at heart and be willing to listen to all sides, remain objective, and make decisions that have all horsemen interest in mind. I hope to bridge the gap between the horsemen and management and help everyone.

Jeff Runco
Owner/Trainer

As one of the leading trainers and a small breeder, I have served on previous boards as well as the current one. It is clear that we are facing unprecedented challenges in 2019 and it is imperative that the current board’s agenda continue in the face of upcoming legislative threats to our purse structure. With all the surrounding competition, we must find additional income sources to increase our purses. I have worked hard on these issues with my fellow board members as well as the day-to-day problems facing horsemen, including track maintenance, starting gate accessibility, and opening of the track in inclement weather. West Virginia racing is facing the largest threat in its history and will require the most knowledgeable and experienced board available to fight for our existence.

Glenn Harrison
Owner/Trainer Alternate

I have been licensed as an Owner/Trainer since 1994, left training in 2004, returned as an owner in 2015, and resumed training my horses in 2016. I have seen a lot of changes in those years, some good and some bad and
there are still changes that can and should be made. If elected, I will work for the betterment of all horsemen and the improvement of our product to the general horse racing fan. 

Anthony Lucas
Owner/Trainer Alternate

I grew up on a dairy farm in Pennsylvania. Growing up, I was in 4H and FFA , before attending Washington Jefferson College, where I earned degrees in Business and History. I moved to West Virginia in 2003, while working for Flying J and Pilot. I became a fan of racing and then an owner in 2003, and began training in 2011.
As a member of the HBPA Board, I believe we have a lot of opportunities to do something positive. I would like to promote racing in the community and bring excitement about the sport to the younger generation. 

Richard Hummer
Owner/Trainer Alternate

My family began racing in 1930. I trained until I became a racing official in 1989 and was instrumental in developing a new Equibase program. I then left racing to manage a Chrysler dealership, while owning my own Photo Delivery Service. I returned to racing as an owner/trainer in 2012.

My experience in racing, as a racing official and business owner gives me the ability and knowledge to represent those who feel they no longer have a voice. I want to grow member participation, and take your concerns to meetings. We have strength in numbers, but you must become an active member to make a difference.