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Sunday, July 24, 2016

Trainer Updates Mid-July

This trainer update compares stats from July 16, 2015 and those from the same date this year. Due to space considerations, many are not included.

As of July 16 Ron Burke, 46, was number one on the trainer’s money list, just like he always is. He has 16 fewer wins than he did on January, 16 2015, but his earnings are up almost $470,000 over last year. His UTRS is roughly the same as it was at that time. Southwind Frank and Hannelore Hanover are his premier performers. Needless to say, Miki, Wiggle and Pete are narrowing the opportunities for his aged pacers. Burke is the top trainer at The Meadowlands and The Meadows; he’s second at Pocono Downs, fifth at Yonkers, and he leads the NYSS.

Jimmy Takter, 55, is number three on the money list. He finished in second the last several years and will be second again this year.

Richard Moreau, the top trainer at Mohawk, was number five as of Sunday July 16, up from number 8 a year ago this time. His earnings are up $252,000 over last year. He has double the wins and money of any other trainer at Mohawk. Fifty-0ne-year-old Moreau finished 2015 at number 13, after being 13 or 14 every year since 2012. Evenin Of Pleasure and Collective Wisdom are a couple of his winners.

Richard Banca, 41, who was not in the top 50 from 2012 to 2014, is at number six: he was third in May and finished 2015 at number 20. The runner up in the standings at Yonkers, he had made 245 more starts through July 16 than he had made last year, resulting in 28 more wins and almost $609,000 more in earnings. His UTRS actually dropped from 0.356 last July to 0.317. Banca makes 80% of his starts at Yonkers.

Ake Svanstedt finished at number 17 during his first season in North America, thanks to the $660,000 Sebastian K banked. Last year he dropped to number 30. Right now he’s at nine with only a handful more wins but $618,000 more in earnings. Cutler winner Resolve’s $260,000 helped out there. Also, Svanstedt is third on the NYSS earnings list.

Linda Toscano was number 4 in 2012 and number 7 the following year. Back when Market Share, Chapter Seven and Heston Blue Chip roamed the earth. She finished at 11 in 2014 and ended 2015 at 15. Right now she’s up to nine, six spots better than last July. She has earned $233,000 more than one year ago. Toscano is number two in the NYSS, her success propelled by freshmen like Robin J, Worlds Apart and Planet Rock.

As was the case with Toscano, Captaintreacherous  gave 44-year-old Tony Alagna a big boost on the money list: he was number 5 in 2012 and number 3 the following year. But like Toscano, Tony has soldiered on without the cash cow. He finished 2014 at 7 and was fourth last year. Right now he occupies the 11 spot, three better than mid-July of last year. His bankroll is up by almost $203,000 on 93 fewer starts. Pace runner up Racing Hill and OSS star Caprice Hill are two of his best.

Thomas Milici, who was not on the top 50 until this year, is number 12, after being at nine in May. The 60-year-old phenom is the number three trainer at Yonkers, where he makes 80% of his starts. His horses win at a heady 34.6% rate. Last year his charges won 27 races and earned $304,000; as of July 16, half-way through the year, they had 109 wins and more than $1.1 million.

Thirty-nine-year-old Dylan Davis is another freshly minted uber- trainer who has made great strides in a relatively short period of time. He wasn’t on the top 50 in 2012 and 2013, and was at number 48 in 2014. And while he didn’t finish 2015 on that list, he was at 32 last July. This year he’s up to number 15, with 139 more starts, 26 more wins and $403,000 more in earnings. His UTRS was 0.353 a year ago and it’s risen to 0.363. Mel Mara and NJSS star Every Way Out are two of his winners.

Virgil Morgan Jr, 50, who is the leading trainer at Scioto Downs, was at number 6 last July, but he’s at 19 this year. He has 71 fewer wins and has banked $626,000 less than he had one year ago. His UTRS has dropped from 0.362 to .322. Morgan finished 2015 at 10, and the Scioto schedule favors a second half run. He was tenth and ninth the previous two years. Josh Sutton drives regularly for Morgan.

Matias Ruiz, 58, has been training for a quarter century, but he had never cracked $530,000 until this year. The California transplant went from off the top 50 list last year to number 22 right now. Through July 16 he has 53 wins and $872,000 in earnings. He’s sixth from the top at Pocono Downs and number 19 at Yonkers.

Buckeye Chris Beaver, 44, wasn’t on the top 50 this time last year, but he finished the year at number 35 with 67 wins and $1.5 million.  Right now he’s at 24. As of July 16 he had 54 wins and earnings of $826,000. And he sports an out of this world 0.442 UTRS. He returned from Canada to focus on Ohio with its enhanced sire stakes program. Il Sogno Dream and Muscle Up The Goal are two of his winners. Aaron Merriman often drives for him.

Joe FitzGerald


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