Bob Levy, horse racing innovator, was the ultimate people person | Dick Jerardi

Bob Levy, horse racing innovator, was the ultimate people person | Dick Jerardi

Philly.com Full coverage: Bob Levy, horse racing innovator, was the ultimate people person | Dick Jerardi

Off-track horse race gambling coming to Horsetown USA next month

“If it opens, the Norco enterprise would be California’s 12th satellite horse-race betting venue, Marten said. State law allows up to 45, including 15 in each of three regions — north, central and south, he said

It is no accident The Derby Room is going into the building of a former restaurant, which is being remodeled at a cost of $500,000.

Zolnier said it will be more than a place to bet on Santa Anita and Los Alamitos races, or the Kentucky Derby. It will be a sports bar and restaurant, he said, with 80 percent to 90 percent of sales coming from food and drinks. Zolnier said he views the gambling element as a way to pull people into the eatery…”

THE DERBY ROOM

Location: 3230 Hamner Ave., Norco

Operator: California Horse Racing and Sports, LLC

Open date: Aiming for mid-December

Employees: 30 to 40. Job seekers may apply at thederbyroom.com

Is horse racing dead?  Not in California

Press-Enterprise Full coverage: Off-track horse race gambling coming to Norco after false start

Industry Profile: Drayden Van Dyke

23-year-old jockey Drayden Van Dyke recently met with Santa Anita’s Zoe Cadman and Alexis Garske for observations from one of So-Cal’s brightest young stars, well on his way to becoming one of racing’s signature riders.

Much has been made of the mentors who have guided you, but what have you learned on your own?

“I’ve definitely had to learn some things first-hand. You have to make some of your own mistakes that teach a lesson you couldn’t be told. That’s the kind of stuff you have to learn on your own.”

What’ one of the biggest mistakes you’ve ever made?

“Not showing up for workers when I was an apprentice. I was working with Tom Proctor and had rented a house with Mike Smith in Del Mar. It was my first summer and I was excited. I had spent a lot but unfortunately, I had to stay in the tack room for a week as punishment.

“At least I could see the moon from my bed (laughing).”

Favorite racehorse of all time?

“There are a lot of them but definitely Justify is up there for me. To be involved in the history that he made and to be able to break his maiden and work him is really cool to me.”

Have you ever wanted to play another sport?

“I would love to play basketball, if I had the size, definitely. Second behind that would be golf. I don’t have a handicap but I shoot in the mid-80’s.

“Even when I play for fun, I like to be competitive. I’ll play for fun but the fun goes away and I’m definitely trying to win. I enjoy it, but I’m definitely always trying.”

Beer or wine?

“Wine. Definitely.”

Cardi B or Nicki Minaj?

“(Laughs) Well, who won the fight the other day?”

Football or Baseball?

“Football.”

What did you eat last night?

“Scrambled eggs with avocado and broccoli. Yes, eggs for dinner. I love eggs.”

Are there other jobs in racing that look interesting or that you could see yourself doing one day?

“I think I’d enjoy TV. Maybe as an analyst. Similar to what Jerry Bailey is doing and what Gary did. I think I would enjoy doing something like that.”

What’s a dream day off for you?

“Not waking up to a phone call, sleeping in and waking up naturally. Just taking my time, having some coffee and not really making any plans.”

What’s a little-known, fun fact about yourself?

“I like rap music. I’ll memorize entire songs so when I go out and we’re dancing I can get into it and rap along (laughing).

If you could have dinner with anyone, who would it be?

“I’d like to have dinner with my dad one more time.”

What gets you out of bed that early every day?

“Love of the game definitely but also fear of missing out. I always feel like I’m missing something if I’m away for more than just one day. I don’t like to be away more than that. I don’t want to miss a new horse coming along.

“Also, the feeling of winning a race and breezing really nice horses is very addicting for me.”

Do you have any pets?

“I do, Gucci, is my mini German-Australian Shepard. He just turned two and he’s like a little human. He was just a little fur ball when I got him.”

Gucci? Why that particular name?

“I’m a Gucci guy. I mostly like their shoes and watches. The clothes are still a little out of my price range and size, but I like to mess around with the accessories.

“I wasn’t really into fashion when I was growing up in Kentucky and Arkansas. One, I didn’t have the money. And two, I didn’t know of the brand back then. I got into all of that when I came to California and was around Mike (Smith.)”

That’s a great segway into talking about ‘Money Clip’ – your first winner. Take us through that first ride. (Money Clip broke his maiden at Hollywood Park on Nov. 11, 2013, under Van Dyke).

“Gary Stevens was originally supposed to ride that horse for Tom Proctor. I was living in Tom’s tack room and just hanging around the barn. It had rained so they took it off the turf and moved it to the Polytrack.

“Tom called Gary and said, ‘Why don’t you stay home? I don’t want you comin’ out and having to get wet. I’ll put the bug boy on. The horse needs a race anyway, he’s not ready.’ So that’s how I got my chance to ride, and I won.

“Tom is more of an old school-type trainer, as his father Willard was, and they usually give a horse a few races to mature. He schools them the right way and always looks toward the future. My instructions were to take him back and make one run. I was told, ‘If he finishes well, so be it. If not, we’ll get ‘em next time.’

“He made a run but I didn’t do much. I was green and shocked at what was going on. I just got up in the knick of time.

“I watched the replay the other day and I thought, ‘Man, Drayden, do something! I didn’t do much of anything. I was just thinking come on wire, come on wire.’

“After winning, I definitely got ‘initiated.’ I was caked with eggs, ice water, powder, you name it. Everything you get when you win your first race. But it was a little different for me. I had to hurry up, take a shower and get back to cool the horse out.

“I think I gained other trainers respect by seeing me do that and watching how Proctor brought me along the right way.”

Talk about Proctor and his impact on you.

Trainer Tom Proctor gives Van Dyke a leg up in the Rodeo Drive at Santa Anita Park on September 29.

“He’s definitely kept me grounded and still keeps me grounded. I recently rode for him at Kentucky Downs and did something he told me not to do and he let me know. He told me I did it wrong. I’m very lucky to have him.”

Fast forward to getting on Justify in the mornings. What were your initial thoughts of him?

“Obviously, he’s talented but what really stood out to me was Bob’s reaction when I first worked him. Bob just said, ‘Wow, that’s a serious horse right there.’

“I kept working him and he was just doing things effortlessly. We were just crushing every horse we worked with and I wasn’t moving on him. He was barely even trying.

“I was really looking forward to riding him in the afternoon and breaking his maiden, which I did, and I was very lucky to be involved with him.”

How did it feel getting taken off Justify, even though it was for Mike? Bittersweet?

“It was. But, there’s nothing I can do and that’s just the business. You just have to keep smiling and keep working hard. That’s what I’ve done and I was rewarded with being leading rider at Del Mar this summer.

“I was happy to see Justify win the Triple Crown and I wouldn’t have wanted it for anyone more than Mike, so it was great to be there. I even helped his mom get to the Winner’s Circle. She was having trouble getting there, and security wouldn’t let her in, but we got her in. I didn’t, but I was there to see it, so that was really, really cool.”

Did it fuel your fire? Did you think, ‘I’ll get my shot’?

“Of course. A lot of people have horses continually coming in so Justify won’t be the last Triple Crown horse. He might be actually, I mean whoever really knows, but there are plenty of horses coming in, so hopefully, I can be there to ride them.”

What do you do for fun? Did you have any fun this summer?

“I have fun! I was really busy this summer, though. I think I had two mornings off the entire meet. I was keeping straight so no, I didn’t go out much. I was riding about seven or eight a day and working about six each morning. I’m working serious horses and very expensive horses, so I respect that.

“After the last day, I had a good time and went out with my friends.”

With so many good trainers putting you on good horses and you and your agent, Brad Pegram, known for picking your spots, did you have an inkling that Del Mar would be as successful as it was?

“It’s funny because my agent and Flavien Prat’s agent, Derek Lawson, have a bit of a rivalry and they’ll go back ‘n’ forth. There’s a bit of a rivalry between me and Flavien as well so we were both a little like, ‘We’re coming for you. We’re loaded so be ready!’

“We had a lot of good horses, a lot of 2-year-olds, so I was looking forward to having a good meet.

“Flavien doesn’t always say much but if he does it’s always after a race and he gets on you for a move or something. But, he’s a friend of mine, we play golf together. He’s a fierce competitor. He makes me ride better and I’m sure I help him ride a better race sometimes as well.

“I wish there were other riders who had that same level of competitiveness, it makes you ride better. I like it, I love it.”

How big of an accomplishment was earning the leading riding title by five at Del Mar?

“It was a big accomplishment for sure. I’ve been leading rider at Los Alamitos a couple of times but not all the big riders are there, trying their hardest. To get it at Del Mar, when everyone is trying to win everything they can, is huge for me and my agent. I’ll never forget it.

Has anything changed since winning the title, or the seven races in one day?

“I feel like I’m really starting to do more things now. The types of races I’m winning, the number of races I’m winning. Even Mike and Gary haven’t won seven in a day. Winning the title on top of that meant a lot.

“I’m getting a fan base now. Even at the coffee shop the other day I was recognized, it was cool.

“It makes me stay on track. The better I do, the more opportunities I get and the better I do. I get in a zone. That momentum helps me to do even better.”

Do you find yourself thinking even more about your late father with your recent success?

“The day I won seven races, yes. On the gallop out, I looked up and talked to him for a minute. I was hoping he saw it. I wish he was around to see it now because he was seeing how well I was doing when I started and I still had no clue what I was doing.

“Now that I’m riding at the top of my level I wish he was a part of it, for a lot of reasons. I know he’s still watching and still proud of me, though.”

Van Dyke points out a few of his accomplishments, including a 2014 Eclipse Award honoring him as the nation’s Outstanding Apprentice.

So many names come to mind that have helped you on your path, is it especially nice to consult with them all for more than just riding advice?

“That fact really helped me after my dad passed away. Without them, I would have been more of a wreck and maybe even now still. Who knows what direction I would have gone in or what could have happened to me?

“Mike and Gary especially were there for me, and they’re still always there for me. I can call them any time. They’re my best friends. I golf with them, hang out with them, work out together. I don’t only see them as my mentors but as my friends. I’m really, really lucky.

“I can go to them for anything. As I got older and grew some hair on my chin, I didn’t know how to shave. I asked Gary what to do and he just said, ‘Come here. I’ll show you.’ He got me a razor and some cream and showed me how. It stuck with me and I think those moments have meant a lot to him, too.”

Favorite racetrack?

“I love the history of Santa Anita. I used to watch Seabiscuit three times a week. Santa Anita was like a character since so much was filmed here. I couldn’t believe I was here when I arrived. The mountains…I was struck by it.”

What are you looking forward to most this meet?

“Hopefully keeping my streak going, my ‘hotness.’ Hopefully winning a lot of races and stakes races and I’m really looking forward to riding at Breeders’ Cup.”

Some of Drayden’s mentors and their thoughts on him:

Bob Baffert:

“I was watching him before he got hurt. I was looking for new talent and told his agent that he’s got a lot of potential. I watched him come up under Proctor and loved the fact that he really made Drayden appreciate everything. He learned to love the horse first and that’s so important when you become a horseman. That’s what really caught my eye.

“He’s little, he’s light and horses run for him. He was patient and I saw him getting stronger.

“When he started working horses for me I liked that he didn’t mind wearing a radio. Some guys don’t like that. I really think that Proctor created a great foundation.

“I’ve always told him that you’ll learn from the good horses because they’ll get there with or without you. He’s handled some high-pressure situations. That’s the hardest part. It’s easy to ride a horse that’s 10-1 but when they’re 2-5, everyone’s expecting a win. You become a target and he’s learned to cope with that.

“He listens, he’s learning. He’s a student of the game. I’ll give him pointers. He’ll get off a horse that’s not even mine and I’ll tell him, ‘You could have done this or that,’ and he listens. He’ll take it in. He wants to be the man, the go-to guy and he’s going to get there. He’s got a good head on his shoulders.

“I was really happy to see him be leading rider at Del Mar, I knew it meant a lot to him.

“Mike Smith has been a big help and Drayden really looks up to him. What I really like is that he’s competitive. He’s not going to do something crazy, or impede someone because he wants to win himself, I like that. He loves the horse, he really does, and I can tell. It makes a difference and it’s pretty cool.”

Gary Stevens:

“He’s a great athlete and he’s always been a great athlete. He’s always wanted to learn and he continues to want to learn.

“You’ll see some guys get to a point where they just stop improving but Drayden improves every day. He’s turned into a student of the game. He loves the game and he loves what he’s doing. That’s what you’ve got to be to be successful.

“I’m proud of him. He’s like another son to me. He’s got myself, Mike Smith, Tom Proctor, he’s got a big support group that always stands behind him. The thing I’m most proud of is that he hasn’t let it go to his head. He’s respectful of his elders and he’s kind of a throw back. He’s always confident but he’s not cocky and that’s cool.

“It’s nice to have someone young that listens and wants to learn. There’s so many who you’ll try and help and they don’t want it. They think they know it all and that’s understandable being young. But Drayden, his ears and eyes are always wide open.”

Brad Pegram:

“There are definitely similarities between my two jocks, in addition to differences. Their dedication to staying fit to ride, their work ethic, and their mental approach. Drayden has learned all Mike’s good habits.

“Mike has taught Drayden how to be the ultimate professional and how to be best prepared to ride. He’s learned a lot but he’s also open to learning and he listens. He’s a student of the game, just as Mike is still. Mike is still learning and will talk to riders that are retired about different races so, yeah, Drayden is taking all of that in.

“They make my job very easy. They’re both ultimate professionals so it makes it very easy on me.

“I’ve always noticed Drayden’s talent. I admire Tom for the way he brought him up and the way he taught him. It was awesome to watch.

“He’s a genuinely good kid. In a great way, he hasn’t changed. He’s a very mellow, humble guy.”

Mike Smith:

“I’ve seen him grow up, been through the growing pains with him. To watch him get over that hump and to see him really focus in on his career and watch him ride right now, it’s great. He’s riding with so much confidence. He’s not a teenager anymore and he knows what he wants. He’s just getting better and better and it’s a lot of fun for me to watch. It makes me proud.

“To be riding extremely well, at the top of the level, and the competition he’s riding against isn’t easy, makes me a very proud older brother.

“I think his work ethic comes from Mr. Tom Proctor. They instilled all of that in him and it’s so important. The work isn’t over until you get to my age and then maybe you can back off a little.

“He does a good job in the morning and teaches them well, gets along with them. And again, a lot of that comes from getting to work for Proctor back at the farm. The rest of it is just learning from riding. I truly believe that you don’t get really good at riding until you’re in your thirties. To see him come along now, just give him another 10 years. It’s incredible.

“I remember I was told that when I was his age and I thought I was riding on top of the world. But it is so true and you learn so much, about how to handle yourself as well. A lot of not only representing yourself but also the sport comes later in life.

“I’m extremely grateful I’m not coming up in this era of everyone seeing everything you do. I think he’s done a pretty good job with it.

“He still has a lot to learn of course but he knows it. He truly understands that. This game can humble you very fast and to just stay even keel.

“The great thing about this sport is that even when things aren’t doing that well, they’ll always come around.”

Source: Santa Anita

How Trainer John Sadler helped turn grape growers into horse racing powerhouse owners

How trainer John Sadler helped turn grape growers into horse racing powerhouse owners

The San Gabriel Valley Tribune Full coverage: How trainer John Sadler helped turn grape growers into horse racing powerhouse owners

There’s No Question Who the Best Real-Money Tournament Player Is

Tommy Massis relaxing back home at Woodbine

It’s This Guy

I was one of the guys who got crushed by The Hammer, the best real-money tournament player in the country.  Tommy Massis of Toronto is not only the King of Keeneland Contests but also the one to fear most in any real-money tournament.  On Sunday (10/14/18) in Lexington Kentucky, he placed a $1,000 win bet on 19-1 shot Bella Noire in Keeneland’s 4th race to claim another real-money victory at Keeneland.  Tommy’s winning total of $20,800 bested 2nd place finisher Blake Jessee by nearly $8,000.

Tommy loves Keeneland, with good reason.  He won the Breeders’ Cup Betting Championship (BCBC) at Keeneland in 2015, and this is his second win in a big Keeneland live money contest.  For his most recent victory, in addition to his final bankroll, he takes home $30,000, a fully paid $10,000 berth in the BCBC at Churchill Downs, and a fully paid entry plus expenses into the 2019 National Horseplayers Championship (NHC) in Las Vegas.

According to the Keeneland press release, Tommy played the tournament from the Green Room at Keeneland, and when Bella Noire stormed down the stretch he jumped up and declared, “You have a new leader!”

The $3,000 buy-in tournament drew 167 entries and awarded BCBC and NHC spots to the top five finishers, NHC spots to places 6 through 8, and prize money to 15th place.

Three years ago I got the pleasure of interviewing The Hammer, so check out the link below to view Tommy’s insight into his first real-money tournament score at Keeneland:

Interview with Tommy Massis

Months after this interview, The Hammer turned around and won the 2015 Breeders’ Cup Betting Championship (BCBC) by absolutely crushing the exacta in the Breeders’ Cup Turf.  A couple weeks later he won the Del Mar real-money tournament, taking down another grand prize and leaving his competition in the dust.

It was truly the year of The Hammer, and this past weekend proved that he is still pounding his competition, and making some men (like myself) look like boys.  Great job Tommy!

 

Did You Miss This Gem?

How to Win a Handicapping Tournament

Marylou Whitney accepts Racing Hall of Fame honor for 3 generations

William Collins Whitney, grandfather of Marylou’s late husband, Cornelius C.V. “Sonny” Whitney, purchased the Saratoga Race Course in 1900 and resuscitated the expiring Victorian lady, and, with August Belmont II, created Belmont Park.

Sonny’s father, Harry Payne Whitney, won the Kentucky Derby twice as well as the Preakness and Belmont four times each. He was the top breeder in the country by earnings 11 times and the nation’s top owner by earnings eight times.

Marylou Whitney accepts Racing Hall of Fame honor for 3 generations…

Palm Beach Daily News Full coverage: Marylou Whitney accepts Racing Hall of Fame honor for 3 generations

Underrated Jockey Scores Milestone at Arlington Park

Racehorse Booked Up owned by Rich Nilsen

Booked Up won back to back races with Emigh at AP in 1997

Jockey Chris Emigh became the third-winningest rider of all time at Arlington International Racecourse when taking Saturday afternoon’s seventh race aboard Sea Diva ($8.80).

Emigh, 47, captured win number 1,079 at the Chicagoland oval when guiding the 4-year-old daughter of Midshipman to victory to surpass Carlos Silva (1,078) for the title. He now trails only Hall of Fame riders Earlie Fires (2,886) and Pat Day (1,330) as Arlington’s all-time winningest jockeys. Later on the card, Emigh added Arlington victory number 1,080 to his record when taking the $75,000 Arlington-Washington Lassie aboard Into Trouble ($30.40).

“It’s an honor and very humbling,” Emigh said. “I was always told that when I first came here that it would be tough to catch some of the guys that have been doing so well. It’s a great feeling. To be in the same sentence as two Hall of Famers is pretty nice.”

Emigh, a native of Portsmouth, Virginia, resides in Wheaton, Illinois, a suburb of the Chicago area. He began riding in 1989 and has captured 16 graded stakes events in his career, eight of which took place at Arlington. Emigh was Arlington’s leading rider in 2006 and has secured a total of seven riding titles at Hawthorne Race Course.

A big shout out and congratulations to jockey Chris Emigh.

UofL Equine Business Program Names New Director

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Sean Beirne, an early graduate of the University of Louisville’s Equine Industry Program in the College of Business, has been named the program’s new director.

Beirne, who has worked in various capacities in the horse racing industry nationwide, has most recently been employed by industry vendor Roberts Communications Network. He was on the Colorado Racing Commission for the past eight years, serving as chairman from July 2015 to June 2017.

Beirne“On Nov. 1, I will begin what I consider to be my ‘dream job,’” Beirne said. “I am thrilled beyond words to receive the opportunity to come back to my alma mater and prepare students to become the future leaders of our great sport of horse racing.”

He replaces Tim Capps, who died following a stroke in April 2017.

Beirne earned his bachelor’s degree from the equine program in 1990. He earned his first undergraduate degree, in political science, from UofL in 1986.

Beirne and his wife, Mary, are both Louisville natives. Mary Beirne graduated from UofL’s School of Nursing.

The Equine Industry Program at UofL is an accredited business degree with an equine focus. Graduates can be found in all aspects of the industry, from training to broadcasting.  Beirne attended the UofL Equine program at the same time as AGOS Founder Rich Nilsen.

For more information, contact Terri Burch, interim director of the Equine Industry Program, at terri.burch@louisville.edu or 502-852-4859.
#WeAreUofL

John Asher was the Kentucky Derby’s beaming ambassador

Horse Racing Has Lost a Legend in John Asher

John Asher was the Kentucky Derby’s beaming ambassador

Just a few of the quotes from those who knew him:

Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert: “John was the warm human face of Churchill Downs. I was always happy to see him. He was as Kentucky as the Derby, bluegrass, bourbon and hot browns. I can’t imagine Derby week without him.”

Morning line odds maker and retired track announcer Mike Battaglia: “I’m heartsick to hear about the passing of my good friend John Asher. My deepest condolences go out to Dee and all of his family. John was loved by many and will be deeply missed.”

Trainer Chuck Simon: “John was just a great person. When I first started training in Kentucky I didn’t know that many people and used to hang out with (late track announcer) Luke Kruytbosch who was my friend from Arizona. Back then, Luke was stationed near the old Press Box and Gold Room for the big players and John was always around. He always took the time to come over and talk to me every time he saw me and ask how my horses were and if I had anything that he could include in a press release – knowing that free press is a godsend for a new trainer starting out. He barely knew me yet he was trying to help me out.

So a few years later I had a horse named Pirate King that John liked. The horse was working really well and even though it was the weeks leading to Derby, which for John was Christmas, every time the horse worked John would email me the clocker’s sheet for the day with a little note, ‘make sure you let me know when he runs, I want to bet a few bucks.’

I don’t think he was a big betting man really but for some reason he took a liking to this horse. So, I enter the horse for opening day of the CD spring meet which of course is the weekend before the Derby. John sees me on the backstretch the day before and says, ‘Well, is he ready?’

I said, ‘He’s pretty live, John. You’ve seen the works.’ So he says good luck, see you in the winner’s circle. The horse gallops at 20-1 and the first thing I think of is John probably laughing as the horse crossed the wire. So, we go in the winner’s circle and I don’t see him. After the race I text him and he doesn’t answer. So, I figure he must be busy as it is Derby Week and he is swamped. The next day he comes to the barn and gives me this sheepish look. I said, ‘You didn’t bet him, did you?’ He said all morning I was thinking I have to remember to get a bet in on Pirate King and then I got tied up in a press conference then there was some emergency then the governor’s office called then I got called into the meeting.

John said he heard Luke say over the loud speaker, ‘Pirate King still going strong.’  He said, ‘Damn I knew that horse was gonna win.’ But, he was happy that he won even though he didn’t get a bet down at 20-1. He was a great guy who loved the Derby and loved Churchill Downs and loved Western Kentucky sports and loved his family more than anything. Few people I ever met were as naturally kind as John Asher was. It’s hard to believe that both Luke and John are both gone.”

 

Tim Sullivan Courier Journal Longtime Churchill Downs spokesman John Asher dies at 62

Glasgow Daily Times Full coverage: John Asher was the Kentucky Derby’s beaming ambassador | Tim Sullivan

Women in Racing Symposium in Saratoga Springs on Sunday

Saratoga_NatMuseumofRacing and HallofFame

copyright AGameofSkill.com

The National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame will present a symposium on Sunday, Aug. 19 featuring accomplished women involved in various aspects of thoroughbred racing. Comprised of seven of the most recognizable women in the sport — Hall of Fame jockey Julie Krone, Hall of Fame trainer Janet Elliot, champion steeplechase jockey Blythe Miller Davies, record-breaking trainer Linda Rice, iconic owner/breeder Charlotte Weber, industry leader Stella Thayer and top racing analyst Gabby Gaudet — the panel will be moderated by longtime television commentator Charlsie Cantey. The symposium begins at 10 a.m. in the Museum’s Hall of Fame Gallery and is open to the public and free to attend.

 

The panelists will discuss their careers and introduction to racing and be available to meet racing fans after the program.

 

About the panelists:

Janet Elliot: A native of Ireland, Elliot became only the second woman inducted into the Hall of Fame and the first woman trainer enshrined in 2009. An assistant to Hall of Famer Jonathan Sheppard for 11 years, Elliot went out on her own in 1979 and has trained some of the top steeplechase horses in the game, including Eclipse Award winners Flat Top and Correggio. She ended Sheppard’s 18-year run as the leading money-earning steeplechase trainer in 1991 and led all steeplechase trainers in wins that year. Elliot topped all steeplechase trainers in earnings for a second time in 1998. She won the inaugural Breeders’ Cup Steeplechase in 1986 with Census and won that race again with Flat Top in 2002.

 

Elliot has won the Colonial Cup six times, the Iroquois five times, the Temple Gwathmey four times, the American Grand National three times and the New York Turf Writers Cup twice. She ranks fourth all time in earnings among steeplechase trainers with more than $8.3 million.

 

Gabby Gaudet: An on-air analyst for the New York Racing Association, Gaudet is the daughter of trainers Eddie and Linda Gaudet and sister to trainer Lacey Gaudet. She began her career as an analyst and paddock reporter for the Maryland Jockey Club while still a student at Towson University in 2013. In addition to working at Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course, Gaudet has since covered racing at Arlington Park, the Breeders’ Cup and Gulfstream Park. She joined NYRA for the first time prior to the 2016 summer meet at Saratoga Race Course and took on an expanded role the following year.

 

Julie Krone: The first woman inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2000, Krone is the most successful woman jockey of all time with 3,704 wins and purse earnings of more than $90 million. She became the first woman to win a Triple Crown race when she piloted Colonial Affair to victory in the 1993 Belmont and the first to win a Breeders’ Cup race when she rode Halfbridled to win the 2003 Juvenile Fillies.

 

Krone won 22 Grade 1 races in her career, including the Pacific Classic, Hollywood Derby, Malibu Stakes, Carter Handicap, Shuvee Handicap, Meadowlands Cup, Ballerina Handicap, Man o’ War Stakes, Sword Dancer Handicap, Vosburgh Stakes, Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup, Frizette Stakes and Flower Bowl Handicap, among others.

 

Blythe Miller Davies: The first woman to win the National Steeplechase Association jockey championship, Miller Davies announced her retirement in 2003 after 15 years in the saddle, 204 steeplechase victories and more than $5 million in purse earnings. She won two NSA championships (1994 and 1995) and ranked seventh on the all-time list of career wins at the time of her retirement.

 

Miller Davies, daughter of trainer Bruce Miller, rode five-time champion and Hall of Fame member Lonesome Glory, two-time champion Flat Top and champion All Gong, as well as NSA Grade 1 winners It’s A Giggle, Campanile, Victorian Hill and Uptown Swell. In addition to her father, she rode for Hall of Fame trainers Jonathan Sheppard and Janet Elliot, among others.

 

Linda Rice: In a career that began in 1987, Rice has become the most successful woman trainer in American racing history. Through July 22, she has won 1,772 races with purse earnings of more than $69 million (both records for a woman). Two of her horses, La Verdad and Palace, surpassed $1 million in career earnings and La Verdad won an Eclipse Award for champion female sprinter. Rice has won 44 graded races in her career, including seven Grade 1 events. She has won five training titles on the New York Racing Association circuit, including the 2009 Saratoga meet.

 

Stella Thayer: The first woman president of the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, Thayer purchased Tampa Bay Downs in 1986, outbidding New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. Along with her ownership of the track, Thayer serves as its president and treasurer. A member of The Jockey Club and a past member of its Board of Stewards, Thayer is also a thoroughbred owner and breeder and a past president of the Thoroughbred Racing Associations.

 

Charlotte Weber: Owner of the 4,500-acre Like Oak Stud in Florida, Weber has enjoyed success as an owner and breeder for 50 years. A member of The Jockey Club and a vice president of the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, Weber has campaigned numerous top horses, including Breeders’ Cup Mile winner and champion turf horse Miesque’s Approval and Grade 1 winners My Typhoon, To Honor and Serve and Zo Impressive. Live Oak earned a second Breeders’ Cup win in 2017 when World Approval won the Mile. World Approval is a half-brother to Weber’s other Mile winner, Miesque’s Approval.

 

About the moderator:

Charlsie Cantey: One of the most recognizable broadcasters in American racing history, Cantey was an analyst for ESPN, ABC Sports, CBS Sports and NBC Sports throughout her distinguished career. Cantey began her broadcast career in 1975 at New York’s WOR-TV on the weekly programs Racing from BelmontRacing from Aqueduct and Racing from Saratoga.

 

From 1977 to 1986, Cantey served as a CBS contributor for NFL, NBA and horse racing coverage. From 1985 to 2002, Cantey was a reporter and analyst for Racing Across America for ESPN. She joined ABC Sports in 1986 and was an integral part of its racing coverage until joining NBC Sports in November 2000 as an analyst for its coverage of the Breeders’ Cup. She worked for NBC for five years, retiring after the 2005 Breeders’ Cup. Cantey covered the Triple Crown races for 17 consecutive years.

Source: Press Release