Fast Horses of Marion County
Timeline 2000 to 2003
- Needles is inducted into the Racehorse Hall of Fame in August.
- Honor Glide, now partially owned by the Heaths, wins major stakes races earning $1.4 million.
- Pinhookers are a major factor in the industry.
- Tartan Farm closes down after a 40 years of breeding champion racehorses including 100 stakes winners.
- Winding Oaks, on about half of the original Tartan Farm land, opens.
- Bonnie Heath II, Needles' co-owner, dies Nov. 4.
- The Bonnie Heath Turf Cup race is created in his honor.
- 450 thoroughbred horse farms in Marion County.
- Ocala racehorses are a $2 billion industry.
The economic impact includes 10,000 local jobs.
- Montbrook of Ocala Stud named Florida Stallion of the Year
- After earning $2.4 million, Montbrook retired as stud commanding a $20,000 fee for a live foal.
- Horses at Bonnie Heath Farm are sold or trucked to a new location.
- The Florida Million stakes race is introduced in November at Calder Race Course.
- FTBOA lobbies for video lottery terminals at racetracks to boost purses and better compete against gambling cruise ships and Indian gaming.
- 4,500 registered thoroughbred foals from Marion County.
- City and county still lack master plan for development.
- Bonnie M. Heath III puts Honor Glide, who earned $1.4 million, out to stud at in Reddick, FL.
- Heath III closes his office at the original Bonnie Heath Farm.
- Dudley Farm relocates from central Ocala to Fellowship.
- A new federal tax law allows racehorse owners to depreciate a horse's purchase price more rapidly.
- This new tax law spurs higher gross sales at thoroughbred auctions.
- Heath Brook, a development replacing 3 heritage farms, stalls. Build-out delayed until 2013.
- Ocala Stud is the only heritage horse farm left in central Ocala.