view raw text
Over 1,000 Pay Tribute To R. I. Commission Head Thomas Testas Work Lauded by Underwood,Corum,Dooley,Pappas PAWTUCKET, R. I., May 15. — Horse-racing as represented by a Congressman down through the ranks of track executives and state officials praised. D. Thomas Testa, chairman of the Rhode Island Racing and Athletic Commission, with words, while some 1,000 other friends of his added their plaudits by their presence at last nights testimonial dinner at the Narra-gansett Hotel. The occasion was the celebration of Testas election as treasurer of the National Association of State Racing Commissioners, but . the compliments of the gathering turned more directly to the Rhode Island commissioners ability and integrity in directing the supervision of racing in this state. Congressman Thomas R. Underwood, of Kentucky, for 16 years secretary of the NASRC, sounded the keynote of the praise lavished by all the speakers upon Testa, whom he praised for "his efforts in keeping alive something important to the country. "I greatly appreciate the friendship shown for Tom Testa by this spontaneous gathering," said the Kentucky Congressman. "Any friend of his is a friend of mine. He is a fine man in racing and all his associates recognize it. He is doing a worthy thing in the national association." Another national figure. Bill Corum, New York sports writer and radio announcer, who has just presented his first Kentucky Derby as the new president of Churchill Downs, added his praise. The heads of New Englands four principal tracks were among the speakers, with James E. Dooley, president of Narragan-sett Park, praising Testa for his fair consideration of all requests that come to the commission. John C. Pappas, president of Suffolk Downs, pointed out Testas efforts to avoid "race wars" and date conflicts, and congratulated the people of Rhode Island for having such a man in the office he holds. Other speakers were Lou Smith, vice-president and executive manager of Rockingham Park; B. A. Dario, managing director and treasurer of Lincoln Downs; Sterling Young, head of the Jockeys Guild; William E. Powers, Rhode Island attorney general, representing Governor Pastore; Henry J. McLaughlin, president of the Providence City Council, representing Mayor Roberts; Walter H. Reynolds, city finance director, and Thomas J. Beeden, chairman of the Massachusetts Racing Commission. Testas two associates on the commission, George D. Grenhalgh and Edward R. Hughes, spoke of their work with the chairman on the racing and athletics commission.