Hear Our Stories

The horse racing industry in Virginia contributes $542.1 Million annually to the state’s economy and is responsible for over 38,000 jobs. Yet the vibrancy and growth of the industry are dependent not only upon financial investors, but upon the hardworking people at farms across the Commonwealth, whose dedication and passion make it all possible.

These are the stories of those people, describing why they love what they do, the advantages of raising horses in Virginia, and what the reopening of Colonial Downs means to them.

Horse Jobs are Real Jobs.

Shawn Woodson, Exercise Rider

Karen Dennehy Godsey, Trainer, Eagle Point Farm

Matthew Smolnik, Director of Economic Development, New Kent County

Jill Byrne, Vice President of Racing Operations, Colonial Downs

Scott Woogen, President Virginia Harness Horse Association

Guillermo Rodriguez, Assistant Trainer

Paula Parsons, Trainer

Jim Fitzgerald, Farmer & Horse Breeder