Santa Anita revealed Monday that Frank Mirahmadi will take over in the announcer’s booth when “The Great Race Place” resumes live racing on December 26.
“We’re very excited to be able to hand Frank the microphone here on opening day,” Tim Ritvo, COO for The Stronach Group, said in the press release. “In addition to being an outstanding communicator, to know Frank is to love him. He’s a very engaging, funny guy who brings a unique perspective to his job.
“First and foremost, he’s a fan and I really think that’s important. He knows what our players want and he knows how to engage not only them, but newcomers as well. He’s well known and respected by our horsemen and we’re looking forward to having him do a number of promotional things in addition to calling races. I know he’ll be here on-track well in advance of opening day to get reacquainted with everyone and we can’t wait for the bell to ring on December 26.”
Dreams do come true! FRANK MIRAHMADI TO ASSUME SANTA ANITA ANNOUNCING DUTIES BEGINNING OPENING DAY, DEC. 26; POPULAR L.A. NATIVE WILL ALSO PLAY A KEY ROLE IN MANY PROMOTIONAL EFFORTS – Santa Anita Park https://t.co/olyL3IkxQe
— Frank Mirahmadi (@FrankMirahmadi) November 26, 2018
Mirahmadi, a Los Angeles native, has served as the Monmouth Park announcer for the past four years. He’ll wrap up his current stint at Aqueduct on December 16.
“Santa Anita Park has been my favorite racetrack since I started attending horse races as a kid in the 70s,” Mirahmadi said. “I have vivid recollections of where I sat watching races featuring superstars such as Spectacular Bid, John Henry, Precisionist, Winning Colors, and so many others.
“There is no higher honor than to be named the voice of what I like to call The Greatest Race Place. I am so thankful for this incredible opportunity and look forward to returning home.”
Over a 22-year career, Mirahmadi has called races at Hialeah Park, Oaklawn Park, Golden Gate Fields, and Louisiana Downs, along with temporary gigs at Santa Anita in 2014 and 2016. He was among the contestants in the well-publicized audition for the Santa Anita announcer position a couple of years ago, when Michael Wrona landed the job.
On Saturday, Wrona took to Twitter to report that he’d been fired from the position. Social media blew up in reaction to the unexpected news.
Mr. Ritvo has just fired me. I am no longer employed at Santa Anita.
— Michael Wrona (@Michael_Wrona) November 24, 2018
“Change is never easy,” Ritvo said, “and we want to acknowledge Michael’s contributions to Santa Anita over the past couple of years. We appreciate his hard work and dedication and we wish him well in his next assignment.”
What are your thoughts on the Santa Anita announcer shake-up? Chime in with your comments!