Mike Penna

President / Host

Mike Penna first sat down behind a microphone in 2003 when he began co-hosting the popular Saturday morning “Equine Forum” talk show. In 2005, Mike and the late Pete Kules established the Horse Racing Radio Network (HRRN). In addition to producing the “Equine Forum” every week, the duo started to travel to racetracks around the country, providing fans with live coverage of many of the nation’s biggest races. Mike is currently President of HRRN and also serves as the anchor for all of its broadcasts. In early 2011, Mike and HRRN received an Eclipse Award for coverage of the 2010 Breeders’ Cup World Championships and in 2013 was honored with the prestigious Old Hilltop Award by the Maryland Jockey Club. Each year HRRN broadcasts more than 100 major thoroughbred stakes races including the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, Belmont Stakes and Breeders’ Cup.

Mike’s passion for racing spans more than 25 years. In 1989, he stood alongside the rail at historic Saratoga Racecourse and watched as Easy Goer won the Travers Stakes. After cashing his winning ticket on the heavy favorite, he was hooked for life. A native of Pittsfield, Massachusetts, Mike and his wife, Michelle, relocated to Lexington in 1997. Mike worked at The Jockey Club, Thoroughbred Times, and Keeneland’s racing office before pursuing his interest in broadcasting.


Jude Feld


Jude Feld joined the HRRN team in 2007 as paddock reporter and analyst. He has loved Thoroughbred racing since his youth. He began his horseracing career in 1978, making charts for the Daily Racing Form at Ellis Park in Henderson, Kentucky under the tutelage of legendary trackman Jack Valentine. After a stint as assistant trainer to Doug Udouj in the Bluegrass State and to Julio Canani in California, Jude took out his own trainer’s license in 1980. He has trained the winners of 23 stakes, including graded winners Pewter Grey, Steff Graf (Brz) and Vieille Vigne (Fr) as well as multiple stakes winners Broadway Pointe, Freya Stark (Ire), Order and Capel Meister (Fr). Retiring from training in 2000, Jude became a racing publicist, public handicapper and bloodstock consultant. In 2003, he was honored with an Eclipse Award, alongside G.D. Hieronymus, for their collaboration “If it was easy…everyone would do it,” which he wrote and G.D. produced for Keeneland. Jude has an intimate knowledge of the Sport of Kings and countless friends in the Thoroughbred racing industry. In 2011, Jude was honored with his second Eclipse Award as part of our HRRN’s broadcast of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.

Kurt Becker


Kurt Becker joined HRRN as an analyst in 2009. Kurt began announcing Standardbred and Thoroughbred races as a teenager on the Illinois fair circuit in the mid-1980s, before accepting a post as the Voice of Chicago Racing in January of 1993. In the latter role, he succeeded legendary race caller Phil Georgeff at Arlington Park, Hawthorne Race Course, and Sportsman’s Park. After adding duties as a play-by-play announcer for Motor Racing Network’s live coverage of NASCAR events in 1994, Becker found his way to Kentucky in the spring of 1997 as the track announcer at both Keeneland Race Course and Churchill Downs. Today, Becker remains as the track commentator at Keeneland while also serving as announcer for auctions conducted by both Keeneland Association and the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society. He also continues in his role with MRN Radio as an anchorman and play-by-play announcer, while adding duties as announcer for Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auctions in 2006.

Sean Clancy

Paddock Reporter

Before joining the HRRN team, Sean Clancy enjoyed a stellar career as a steeplechase jockey. Champion jockey in 1998, Clancy co-publishes Steeplechase Times and The Saratoga Special with his brother Joe. Clancy won the Eclipse Award for writing in 2009, and was part of HRRN’s Eclipse Award-Winning Breeders’ Cup broadcast team in 2010. Sean’s keen eye make his pre and post race insight invaluable to listeners and his unique ability to relate to horsemen helps provide outstanding interviews for HRRN fans. He currently lives in Middleburg, Va. with his wife, son, eight horses, two cats and a goat.

Anthony Stabile


Anthony “the Big A” Stabile was born at the racetrack. His parents met at Aqueduct, he worked as a hotwalker, groom and jockey agent at the NYRA tracks throughout high school and college before becoming a writer and handicapper for the New York Post in May 1999. At the Post, Anthony handicapped six or seven tracks a day, covered both the Thoroughbred and harness scenes and shattered all public handicapping records by showing an $88 profit at the 1999 Saratoga meet, his first as a public handicapper. Anthony has contributed to both the Kentucky Derby and Breeders’ Cup editions of The Bloodhorse, was co-host of “Thoroughbred Central” for the New York City OTB Television Network, hosts seminars for some of racings’ biggest days throughout the New York City area and is the Virtual Race Track announcer at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. Anthony is best known for selecting the New York bred gelding Funny Cide to win the 2003 Kentucky Derby at 12-1. Anthony had “the gutsy gelding” at 150-1 in a Vegas future book as well as in all three Kentucky Derby Future Pools. Anthony was the ghost writer for Funny Cide in a series of columns that appeared in the Post and authored “Through the Binocs,” a daily recap of the day’s action at NYRA racetracks.

Ellis Starr


Ellis Starr, also known as “Ubercapper”, has been studying horse racing and handicapping for over 35 years and was one of the first in his profession to publish his selections on the Internet, becoming an immediate hit with his philosophy of “teaching people to fish” while “giving them fish” at the same time. Ellis does this by sharing the methodology he uses as part of the insightful, top-quality selections and analysis he creates.
Ellis is the National Racing Analyst for Equibase, The Thoroughbred Industry’s Official Source for Racing Information, writing a widely distributed “Race of the Week” story covering the biggest races in North America, which also appear on America’s Best Racing at His selections and analysis for races around the country can be found at the web sites of the major advance deposit wagering companies in North America – Twinspires and Xpressbet as well as Equibase and TrackMaster. Ellis’ insights can also be found via twitter @ubercapper.
Ellis also puts his money where his mouth is by participating in Handicapping Tournaments, last year winning the Derby Wars $30,000 Belmont Shootout. In addition, 2012 marked the seventh straight year Ellis qualified to join an elite group to qualify for the Keeneland Tournament of Champions. Ellis also was one of only 350 people in the world to have qualified for the TwinSpires Online Handicapping Championship.

Billy White


Billy White began working with HRRN in 2006 when he served as an analyst alongside Mike & Pete. He is a chicago native and entrepreneur who considers Lexington KY his second hometown and Keeneland racecourse as hallowed grounds. When not working with HRRN, he operates a sales company and is an owner of several Jimmy John’s restaurants. Billy is a racing enthusiast who has owned horses in partnership with Ashby Thoroughbreds since 1999. He refers to himself as a “frustrated handicapper and horse pontificator”.

Shawn Seay


Shawn was born in Lexington and raised up and down the East Coast. His first experience in radio was hosting an overnight show on the University of Georgia’s student run station. He was producer of the Dave Elswick Show, was an integral part of bringing ESPN Radio into Lexington and helped to start up the Lexington Legends radio network. In 2005, after a stint in the US Coast Guard, Shawn returned to the radio business and has been involved in all aspects of stations in both Lexington, KY and Savannah, Ga. He currently lives in Lexington with his fiancee, author Mehitobel Wilson, and his beautiful daughter, Lillie.

Michelle Penna

Chief Operating Officer

Michelle has been an integral member of the HRRN team since its inception. Working behind the scenes to organize various aspects of the broadcasts, she has helped assure the success of the network. In 2011, Michelle stepped into the role of on-site producer and quickly established herself as one of the best in the business while travelling with the HRRN team to racetracks throughout the country. A native of North Adams, Massachusetts, Michelle moved to Lexington, KY in 1997 with her husband and HRRN President Mike Penna. She has worked in racing for more than a decade as a member of The Jockey Club.

Kristina McManigell


Kristina grew up in southern Illinois, and was introduced to racehorses at an early age. Her first time on the back of a Thoroughbred was at 12 years of age, and she immediately knew what she wanted to do with her life. She was a student of Chris McCarron's North American Racing Academy, part of the second inaugural class. Following that, she galloped horses for top trainer Todd Pletcher. She took out her Jockey's license in late 2009, riding her first race at Churchill Downs. She then went to Tampa Bay Downs, where she was the Leading Apprentice Jockey for the winter 2010 meet before making her way to the Northeast to ride primarily at Suffolk Downs, Parx, Laurel, Pimlico, and Colonial Downs, where she was consistently a top ten rider, along with occasionally shipping in to Delaware Park, Penn National, Aqueduct and Saratoga. She suffered multiple injuries during her career, which resulted in her retirement on March 13, 2014 as one of the top female riders in the nation at the time with $4,648,421 lifetime earnings. Kristina now pursues her love of broadcasting with HRRN and teaches at the same school she attended, the North American Racing Academy.

Jeff Bloom


A thoroughbred industry veteran of more than 30 years, Jeffrey Bloom was a professional jockey in addition to serving as a racing manager, marketing and media relations’ consultant and broadcaster. During his 9 year riding career, Jeffrey raced at many of the major tracks throughout North America. After retiring as a jockey, he became the main workout rider for leading trainers that include Eddie Gregson and Hall of Famer Charlie Whittingham. Following his riding career, Jeffrey earned a B.S. degree in Financial Services from San Diego State University and his business resume includes a successful venture in software technology sales and corporate business development. Jeffrey founded and runs Bloom Racing Stable, LLC a horse racing partnership company which is now affiliated with Bloom Squared, LLC, an investment company he started with his brother Bryan Bloom and Andrew Yaffe Jeffrey recently joined the advisory board of the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance a nonprofit organization that provides funding for approved racehorse aftercare facilities. He also serves on the board of Ivey Ranch Park Association, a nonprofit organization that provides service and care for special needs children through therapeutic equine activity. Jeff joined the HRRN team as an analyst in 2014.

Acacia Courtney


Acacia Courtney began riding at the age of 8, training in the hunter-jumper and dressage disciplines. She soon fell in love with Thoroughbreds, and in 2011 founded the 501(c)(3) nonprofit Racing for Home, Inc., which is dedicated to repurposing Off-Track Thoroughbreds for new careers after the racetrack. The venture brought her to the Suffolk Downs backside on numerous occasions, and eventually led to full-fledged passion for the sport of racing. She soon began writing for America's Best Racing, before connecting with HRRN. Also an accomplished dancer, Acacia studied with the Joffrey Ballet and American Ballet Theatre before winning the title of Miss Connecticut 2014 and being recognized as a top-15 semifinalist in that year's Miss America Pageant. She held the title for one year, traveling the state and country in partnership with various charities and organizations as a public speaker and ambassador. After completing her year as Miss Connecticut, Acacia returned to school to finish her degree at Fordham University and pursue her ambition of being an analyst.