Our Team Members
Dr. George R. Sikora, Owner and managing partner.
Dr. Sikora’s passion is to advance the improvement of thoroughbred breeding and racing in Ohio.
His background includes degrees in agriculture and veterinary medicine from the Ohio State University. Through bovine embryo transfer practice, he was exposed to a multitude of purebred cattle breed associations. During the last 30 years, he has held leadership positions as director, vice president and president in some of these organizations. Along with purebred cattle, he was involved with a multitude of racing partnerships. The participation in these organizations and partnership arrangements has given him a firm platform on how to navigate and arrange our present breeding and racing partnerships.
Through his background in veterinary medicine, animal science, agribusiness and business holdings, it has prepared him to bring organizational skills to elevate Mapleton Thoroughbred Farm in the Ohio thoroughbred industry.
He is active on a daily basis on the farm. He feels it is important to have a “hands on” approach to running a thoroughbred business. Whether being present at foaling, doing vet rounds, inspecting mares, foals, yearlings, breeding mares, in the pasture or office, he can keep that personal touch to the business.
As a director of the O.T.B.O. he not only keeps a pulse on the Ohio Thoroughbred industry, he also works to advance it.
Dr. John P. Bryk, Owner, resident veterinarian and farm manager.
As an owner of Mapleton Thoroughbred Farm, he has been well prepared for his duties. As a child and young adult, he grew up and managed a 700 acre dairy farm. After graduating from the Ohio State University Veterinary College, he practiced large animal medicine and surgery for 25 years. His concentration in practice was on reproduction and nutrition. This focus ultimately resulted in him forming Golden Link Microbials. Golden Link Microbials is an animal probiotic company that produces and distributes Equine Immune Boost a leading probiotic for horses.
His farm background equips him to manage pastures, crop rotation and harvesting the 200 ton plus of hay the farm puts up every year. When not involved with the Mapleton Thoroughbred Farm, he is managing Golden Link® Microbial Supplements.
Fred Hostetler – Thoroughbred Manager.
Fred’s Amish upbringing has introduced him to horses since birth. He is in charge of caring for all horses on a daily basis. His instinctive ability to understand and pick up on the individual horse’s personality is an invaluable asset to the farm. His Amish work ethic, plain horse sense and mild mannerism enable him to deal with the most fractious of Thoroughbreds.
Norman Stutz – Farm maintenance and Thoroughbred handling assistant.
Norm’s vast background in general maintenance, allows him to keep all structures and equipment in excellent repair.
Linda Dickens and Jeanette Gast – Office Staff.
Linda and Jeanette have the combination of over 30 years in computer operations, data entry, bookkeeping, organizational skills and work experience which enhances our office’s ability to keep all records, registration, Jockey Club information and billing in an orderly manner.
Steve Castagnola – Bloodstock Advisor.
As owner and president of Kempton Bloodstock agency in Lexington, Kentucky, Steve brings a wealth of information on Thoroughbred pedigrees, mating and selection.
His background includes working for the world famous Thoroughbred farm, Taylor Made, from 1997 to 2009. While at Taylor Made, he held the positions of Stallion Nomination Manager and Director of Client Development. Since being retained by Mapleton Thoroughbred Farm, he has brokered the deal buying Cowtown Cat from Winstar Farm to the Mapleton Thoroughbred Farm, in the winter of 2014. He routinely visits the farm to evaluate all blood stock. His input is monumental in guiding Mapleton Thoroughbred in breeding yearlings for our racing and breeding partnership.
Bob Roberts – Publicity and news.
Bob Roberts is a native Clevelander who grew up in Willowick, an eastern suburb. He knew he wanted to be a sportswriter when his father took him to an Indians game and he asked who those guys were typing on a countertop behind home plate in the upper deck of old Municipal Stadium.
“They’re sportswriters,” said his dad. “That’s their job.”
Roberts began his career at the Mentor Morning Monitor before heading over to The Willoughby/Lake County News-Herald where he was named sports editor in 1970 at the age of 22. Roberts was hired by The Cleveland Press in 1973 and returned to The News-Herald when the Press folded in 1982. The Cleveland Plain Dealer hired Bob in 1985 and he remained there for over 20 years before accepting a buyout in 2006.
After three year stints with both Thistledown as the track’s publicity director and with the Ohio State Racing Commission as an inspector, Roberts covered the inaugural season of racing at Mahoning Valley Race Course for the Youngstown Vindicator.
Roberts has been writing racing stories and picking the ponies for 50 years. He started in junior high study hall, convincing his teacher the Hialeah jockey standings he was working on were part of a math project. Roberts spent nearly 40 of those years making selections for The News-Herald, Press and Plain Dealer.
He came within a single winner of sweeping a card three times, picking eight of nine winners at Thistledown and Beulah Park. Roberts has made one appearance in the Daily Racing Form/NTRA National Handicapping Championship finals, fin- ishing eighth. He also cashed in a Pick The Ponies Contest at the Las Vegas Hilton.
Roberts has won numerous awards. They include best harness story in North America, best Preakness story, a Golden Quill for feature writing in western Pennsylvania, and more than 10 state-wide writing awards in Ohio.
He is most proud of being the lead columnist not only on C1 (the sports section) but A1 (the front page) on the same day while covering the 1998 World Cup in France. His front page story was a feature from Normandy Beach.
Roberts produces an annual video entitled “Here’s to the Winners,” which reviews all Ohio Fund stakes races as well as saluting the Horse of the Year and the “Best of the Buckeyes” divisional champions.
He is on the Board of Directors of the Greater Cleveland Sports Hall of Fame and has successfully lobbied to have race track- ers inducted into the Hall.
Bob and his wife Joanne reside in Mentor. They have four daughters and six grandchildren.