Mitch Downs - Moonshadow, General Manager

Mitch Downs
Hometown: Louisville, Ky
With Casse Racing since 1985

Mitch Downs said that it was “by chance” that he ended up at the racetrack working with horses. Luckily for Casse Racing, Mitch not only found the racetrack, but found Mark Casse soon after.
“I was going to the University of Louisville and one day, I just jumped the fence at Churchill Downs,” said Mitch. “I hooked up with the Norman Casse stable (Mark’s dad), and started walking hots.”
Mitch, who remembers reading the Daily Racing Form as a child, has fond memories of his trips to the racetrack with his father.
When Mark came to Churchill from New York to train his own string of racehorses, Mitch signed on with Mark as a stable hand. That was 1985..
It was in 1989 that Feigned Affection, a 2-year-old filly that Mitch groomed, won the Gowell Stakes at Turfway Park and paid $110.00 to win.
“She was my favourite horse,” said Mitch. “And I bet on her too.”
Mitch has been with Mark through the many racetrack years, the Mockingbird era and he’s now the farm manager at Mark and Tina’s Moonshadow South in Ocala, Florida.
As the farm manager he oversees all aspects of Moonshadow, significantly the breaking and training all of the 2-year-olds on the farm. As a vital part of the organization, Mitch certainly helps sets the tone for the Casse runners as they embark on their careers.
“I was at the racetrack for a lot of years but I like the farm life a bit better,” said Mitch. “I have a really good relationship with Mark and he’s very easy to get along with. Once I started working with him, I have stuck with him.”

Mike and Tammy - Moonshadow North

Mike Goubault – manager Moonshadow North
Born: Montreal, Quebec
With Casse Racing since 2002

Tammy Cockburn –  Moonshadow North
Born: Vancouver, British Columbia
With Casse Racing since 2004

Mike Goubault grew up around horses but it was not until he bought a filly named Miss Jenny that he became hooked on horse racing.
“I bought her from (Hall of Fame) trainer Frank Merrill for $1,000,” said Mike. “She had a bowed tendon and she couldn’t be a riding horse because she was too flighty. So we fixed the bow and she won for me and my trainer Norm Smith. That’s how it all started.”
Mike was selling construction equipment, such as bobcats, at the time and Woodbine racetrack was one of his customers.
Soon, he started his own horse transportation business while working with the racehorses of trainer Donna Pizarro.
Mike was approached by Mark Casse with an offer to be his stable’s van driver six years ago and then helped out at Mark’s farm in King City until it was sold.
Today, Mike and his girlfriend Tammy Cockburn manage Casse Racing’s Moonshadow North near Loretto, Ontario.
Tammy is the niece of top Vancouver trainer Allan Jack and has been involved in the racing business her entire life.
She has worked for Joe Walls and for Mark’s father Norman Sr. in Ocala, Florida.
“I met Tammy in Florida and brought her up here four years ago and now we look after all the horses at the farm.”
Mike and Tammy begin their duties at 4:30 each morning. Mike manages outside the barns including the training of thehorses and the maintenance of the track while Tammy runs the barns.
“All the horses are my favourites, they are like my children,” said Tammy. “I couldn’t pick just one.”
Mike, who ships horses back and forth from the farm to Woodbine, has a special place for his own horse, Dancingalltheway, a 2-year-old colt.
Mike and Tammy live in a house on the Moonshadow North property.


Mike Anderson

Mike Anderson
Born: Lousiville, Kentucky
With Casse Racing since 1980

Mike Anderson figures he has groomed about 200 horses for Mark since he began working for him in 1980 at Churchill Downs.
Today, Mike is a trainer and a “jack of all trades” at Mark and Tina’s Moonshadow Farm in Ocala, Florida.
“I train the horses, take care of the two racetracks by watering and harrowing -  I do a lot of everything,” said Mike, whose first job at the track was as a hotwalker.
Mike said the love of the horse lured him to the racetrack at first and said he has a hard time picking out a favourite horse over the years.
“There were so many that I groomed that I loved,’ said Mike. “It is too tough to pick out just one.”
Mike was part of Mark’s racing team in Kentucky and New York and then moved to Ocala in 1995 to be a farm trainer for Harry Mangurian’s successful Mockingbird Farm, which Mark managed during those years.
When Mockingbird closed and Mark went to manage nearby Sez Who Thoroughbreds, Mike went to work at that farm until it was dispersed.
He has been at Moonshadow with Casse Racing ever since.
“Mark is so easy to get along with,” said Mike. “He is loyal to his employees and his clients.”

Cindy Black - Post Operation and Rehabilitation

Mitch Downs
Born: Miami, Florida
With Casse Racing since 1992

Cindy has been working with horses as long as she can remember and was lured to the world of the thoroughbred in the early 1980’s.
“I was born in Miami and I started working with show horses,” said Cindy. “I moved to Ocala and met thoroughbreds.”
In 1995, Cindy went to work at Harry Mangurian’s Mockingbird Farm one of the state’s biggest racehorse operations in the heart of Ocala horse country.   That is when Cindy met Mark Casse. And when Mark moved to his own farm some seven years ago, Cindy went with him. Cindy says she “does a little bit of everything” in her daily duties at Mark’s farm. “I do all the medication for broodmares, yearlings, and foals.
“Any horse that comes back from surgery, I take care of them until they are back to good health.”
Cindy also foals mares during her seven-day-a-week job and says she would have a hard time picking out a favourite horse, past or present.
“I love them all, I could never pick out one or two,” she laughs.
While Cindy says she does not see Mark much during the busy racing season, she does occasionally hear about some of the horses that she has cared when they win big races for Mark and his owners at Woodbine.
“I don’t go to the races. I like the farm life the best. And I like where I am, Mark is great to work for.”

Richard Lowe - Head of Maintenance

Born: Ocala, Florida
With Casse Racing since 2001

Richard Lowe knew about Mark Casse and his family since he was in high school in Ocala. But it was not until six years ago that Mark and Tina asked him to join the Casse Racing team.
“I worked at Harry Mangurian’s Mockingbird Farm for 20 years and that’s where I met Mark,” said Richard. Richard says he could be called the “equipment”manager but his daily duties say he is much more than that.
He is in charge of purchase orders of supplies including hay, feed, medical items, trucks, trailers and other farm equipment. He works with Cindy Black, Mitch Downs and Mark to coordinate what is needed for the farm to operate smoothly on a daily basis.
Richard also oversees all the maintenance on the farm: you will often find him harrowing the racetrack or cutting grass. He also had a hand in constructing the Casse Racing office at the farm, building barns and on the property.
“I try to do whatever needs to be done to make things run smoothly. I just want to do the best job I can do for Mark and Tina. They have been a blessing to me and my family.”

Robbie E. Hofher - Office Administrator

Resides: Morriston, FL
Business relationship with Mark and Tina since 1990
Robbie E. Hofher has been in the horse business for 33 years. In 1978 she married into her husband's family run racing and breeding operation. After 10 years on the racing circuit she settled down on a farm in Morriston, Florida.
Robbie worked for Harry Mangurian's Mockingbird Farm for 13 years. There she met Mark, who was Director of Operations at the time. After Mockingbird was sold she continued to follow Mark's career over the years.
When the call came from Mark and Tina in 2011 to join the team, Robbie was happy to come out of a short retirement.  "It was time to go back to work". It has been the best thing I could have done. I realize how much I missed the Thoroughbred social network and the excitement of the horse business. "
"My place is in the office. I enjoy being able to organize and expedite what needs to get done."
"What I enjoy the most with working for Casse Racing is the working relationship I have with Mark and Tina. They certainly make you feel like a team player. I can only say that this is one of the happiest times in my life right now"