CLAREMORE, Okla. – Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs officials have added a tribute race to Sunday’s race card to honor respected horsewoman and Oklahoma Quarter Horse Racing Association executive director Debbie Schauf.

Schauf passed away on Aug. 11 and left a lasting impact on the horse racing industry as a whole. Following four years in the Kansas Legislature, Schauf accepted a position as director of the Kansas Horsemen’s Association. Her career grew to include work with the Pacific Coast Quarter Horse Racing Association, Texas Quarter Horse Association, Oklahoma Horse Racing Association and more. She also served as a member of the AQHA Racing Committee, the AQHA Affiliate Council and as a consultant for Quarter Horses racing issues in jurisdictions across the United States.

The seventh race on Sunday, Sept. 22, will be named in her honor, with a momentary tribute and moment of silence for her life and legacy. The designated race is an allowance race for 2-year-olds going 300 yards and will post at approximately 2:30 p.m.

“We are grateful to have had the opportunity to work closely with Ms. Schauf over the last four years. She worked tirelessly for the horsemen of Oklahoma, and her passion for the sport was unwavering,” said John Lies, racing secretary, announcer and oddsmaker at Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs. “Her body of knowledge and desire to promote competitive and clean Quarter Horse racing will be tough to match. We are all better off because of her contribution in this state. She will be missed.”

Schauf worked tirelessly to promote the sport alongside members of the Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission, Oklahoma Legislature and various Oklahoma racetracks, and for implementation of fair rules and regulations for horses and horsemen, alike.

Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs races post at noon each day. Finals races, including the AQHA Juvenile Challenge Finals, AQHA Distance Challenge Finals and AQHA Distaff Challenge Finals, will follow the memorial race. The Black Gold 350 Championship Futurity Finals, featuring the 10 fastest qualifying 2-year-old Quarter Horses in the country going 350 yards, will close out racing for the day.

Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs is located 3 miles east of Claremore on Highway 20. For more information, visit and click on the Will Rogers Downs tab, or call (918) 283-8800.