September 25, 2012

Second Edit: Kellyn Gorder, Thoroughbred Trainer

Last week I spent the morning with a group of individuals who are no strangers to the horse business but are now becoming their own independent racing stable.

Kellyn Gorder has worked most of his career behind the scenes - breaking horses for big time horse operations such as WinStar farms. As I talk with him on Thursday he is entering data into his Macbook and calling the stewards to enter horses in Keeneland's upcoming October meet. With my limited knowledge of how the horse industry works he graciously answers all my questions, looking up from time to time over his glasses to watch horses cool down in the shed row outside barn 74 at Keeneland Training Facility in Lexington.

Gorder has surrounded himself with a youthful group of people, making him appear to be the wise sage of his crew. Whether it's the Equine Physical Therapist who comes by to congratulate him on a recent win, or the enthusiasm on John Ortiz's face as we tromp through a field behind the training facility to catch up with an exercise rider, everyone is all smiles. As workouts begin, however, faces become more serious. A hands-on trainer, Gorder is soon up on his pony Skeeter to more closely watch the working horses of the day.

Some Sundays Ortiz brings Gorder's pony Skeeter to the back fields of Keeneland and just rides around - fields that rarely get used for such exercise. He says on a clear morning, you can see the track and barns to the right and a horse farm to the left - very pastoral.

Read the story from C-J writer Jennie Rees, here.

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