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The Notebook September 25, 2014


Out of the Gate with ... Harris Auerbach

Harris Auerbach is managing partner of M.Auerbach, LLC and The Unusual Heat Syndicate. He is an owner/breeder who manages the bloodstock, marketing, social media, historical data and farm coordination of approximately 75 horses in California and Kentucky. Auerbach graduated with honors from the University of Arizona in 1991 with a business degree specializing in marketing. Starting in 2004, he took an active role in the Auerbach family breeding and racing operations and is now vice chair on the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association's Board of Directors. Horses most associated with Auerbach include Unusual Heat, Add Heat, Lethal Heat, Golden Doc A, Bel Air Sizzle, Brushburn, Burns, Lakerville, Huntsville, Starspangled Heat, Orbits World, America's Friend, Pretty Unusual, Jax El, Hot n’ Dusty, Magic School, Mensa Heat and Cardiac. Auerbach lives in the Conejo Valley of Southern California with his wife, Robin, his daughters, Jamie and Allison, and his dog, Sonny. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, sporting events and raising awareness for off-the-track Thoroughbreds.

Name: Harris David Auerbach

What I do for a living: Managing partner of M.Auerbach, LLC and the Unusual Heat Syndicate. Also, vice chairperson of the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association.

How and when I was introduced to Thoroughbred racing: Introduced in 1977 when my dad claimed our first horse, Bravo Bravo.

My favorite racetrack: Santa Anita Park

My favorite Thoroughbred racing event: Breeders’ Cup

Other sports/teams I follow: The University of Arizona Wildcats football and basketball, San Diego Chargers, Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Kings.

What I would like to see more of in Thoroughbred racing: Patience and development of young horses so they can have longer, sounder careers and lives.

What I would like to see less of in Thoroughbred racing: The strong emphasis we have on 2-year-old races with purses that entice people to push young horses before they are ready to perform.

Three words that define what Thoroughbred racing means to me: Passion, excitement and athleticism

First Thoroughbred track I ever attended was: Hollywood Park for Seattle Slew’s first race out west in the 1977 Swaps Stakes.

Favorite all-time Thoroughbred: Unusual Heat

My personal best moment in the sport of Thoroughbred racing:  Burns, who was my best friend from the time he was a foal, winning the Grade 2 La Jolla Handicap at Del Mar.

Best racetrack food can be found at: The Vessels Club at Los Alamitos

My favorite jockey:  This is a trick question that could lose me a lot of friends and/or races, so I plead the Fifth!!!

My favorite trainer: Barry Abrams

My heroes: My parents

Person in Thoroughbred Racing I’d like to have dinner with: Jim Gagliano

My philosophy on life: Cherish every day and those you love.

Favorite quote or motto: Vanity is definitely my favorite sin.

Favorite animal other than a horse: Dogs, specifically Labrador retrievers

Favorite non-Thoroughbred racing sports event I have attended: The 2005 BCS National Championship Game between USC and Texas

Favorite food: Steak

Favorite vacation spot: Maui

Favorite city: San Francisco

Favorite musician/band: Dan Fogelberg/Chicago

Favorite all-time movie(s): “The Godfather, Part II”

Favorite TV Show: All time - “Cheers!”   Current - “The Good Wife”

Favorite hotel: The Venetian in Las Vegas

Websites I visit daily:,,,, 

What I drive: Acura TSX

Pet peeve: Closed-minded people

Favorite movie about horse racing: Tie - “Casey’s Shadow” and “Seabiscuit”

Which actor would play me in a movie: Matt LeBlanc

Alma Mater: The University of Arizona

Favorite radio shows/channels: Sirius XM 70s on 7

Best Book I recently read: “Brave New World” (just reread it for the first time in over 20 years!)

Favorite memento: My dad’s old watch

Favorite dessert: Banana cream pie

Favorite drink: Grey Goose Bay Breeze

Favorite scent: Cool Water, by Davidoff

What I like about my job: Everything. There’s something new every day, and I get to spend them at the track and the farm.

Favorite tech gadget: My Samsung Galaxy S5

Twitter Handle: @AuerHeat

People I follow on Twitter: Just about everybody in horse racing.

No. 1 Bucket-List item: To own or breed a Breeders’ Cup winner.

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Fan Photo of the week

Congratulations to Beverly Smith, winner of this week's Fan Photo contest!

From Beverly: "This is the groom kissing the nose of Sheikhzayadroad after he won the Northern Dancer Stakes at Woodbine." Want in? E-mail a picture with a brief description to for consideration!

Photos of the week

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