horse trainer

Not Even a Pandemic Can Push Rice Off Course

ELMONT, N.Y.--Linda Rice is as meticulous as they come in preparing her horses. The conditioner knows every detail about each and every horse in her care and maps out very specific plans for them. But, as organized as Rice is, she is equally as adaptable, as every horse trainer must be, and those qualities have served her well as she prepares Max Player (Honor Code) for a step up to the big leagues in an unconventional edition of the GI Belmont S. Saturday. Max Player's unique journey to the top...

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Contessa Quits Training

Longtime New York trainer Gary Contessa has announced he is ending his training career after 35 years. In a story originally reported by the Paulick Report, he cited the costs incurred by the Department of Labor investigation and his wife's ongoing illness as his reasons for hanging up his hat. Contessa is one of many trainers in New York to be investigated by the DOL over record-keeping and wages issues with backstretch employees. Several conditioners have already been hit with hefty fines by both the state and federal DOL. This...

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Letter to the Editor: A Woman Among Men

It was about 9:15 a.m. on a chilly day at Belmont and as I headed down the aisle towards the back door of Barn 44 for what felt like the 50th time since arriving at 5:15 a.m., a hot walker stopped me in my tracks saying with a laugh, "You two started neck and neck earlier, but now she has 10 lengths on you." The woman he was referring to was top trainer Linda Rice and he couldn't have summed her up much better. A client once compared Rice to...

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2020 Goals: Graham Motion

It's no secret that racing had a tough year in 2019. We asked a cross-section of participants what their number one goal is to make racing better in 2020. (Want to participate? Email [email protected]) In my opinion, the number one priority for racing to achieve in 2020 is to come up with some form of stronger leadership from within the sport. Clearly the idea of a commissioner is a pipe dream; to me the next best thing would be an advisory committee which would have the role of counsel for...

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