Hockey, Jerry Mormon, Jerry discussed on The Horse Racing Radio Network Podcast
Dreaming that when you're a kid, but it didn't last too long. I hope you look pretty quick. What position did you play in football? Well, we call that middle guard. It was a defensive center. I played right across from the center. Yeah. I like the defensive line. I was pretty good at, I liked it. And that was just in high school. Just in high school, yeah. I played mostly I was a hockey player at that time. I mean, I played a lot of hockey, but in high school, we dressed all in play football. You had to have something in the winter time. Yeah, and every kid that grows up in Canada wants to be a hockey player, right? Back then, everybody was we had ranks in every street corner and the parks all had ranks and we played hockey in the summertime. We play on the street. You know, that was our passion back then, you know, basketball was getting bigger. And soccer and lacrosse was big, but hockey was the one. With your interest in other sports, did you ever think, well, maybe I won't make a career in horse racing. Maybe I'll do something different. No, I always knew horses were for me. Yeah, yeah, and it's been a relationship that has lasted 50 years for my special guest here, Dan vela here on trainer talk, presented by facing tipton. So you go to work and you start learning from some of the folks with the show horses and then you move on to working on the backside at woodbine. Where do things go from there? What was kind of the first moment when you said, man, this is going to be my life. Well, I knew right from the start, it's what I wanted to do. The person that kind of gave me the push in the right direction was a fellow from Western Canada named Jerry Mormon. Jerry trained for chef free farms, and I still train actually. It's an odd thing, but Steven shafts. Who I train for now, it was his father, Jerry, that it was my first real breakthrough job. I became an assistant trainer for Jerry Mormon and not a pretty solid education there. I worked with Chris Rogers, who was an outstanding rider and they were both great guys and great characters and aggressive horsemen and liked what they were doing. And that kind of where I turn the corner before that, I was, you know, you kind of know what you want to do, but you don't know how to get there. But yeah, it's Chris Rogers and Jerry Marvin, especially Jerry. He was he was the key for me to getting to the next level and learning how to work that much harder and learning about the horses and to spend a lot of time that worked very hard for quite a while with him, but enjoyed it. Yeah, you mentioned that education working with Jerry. What are some of the things that he taught you that have served you well throughout your career? Probably the biggest thing. I remember saying it many times. You know, they're each individuals. You have to treat them like you can't train horses, you know, you can't train them all the same. They're individuals. They have individual personalities. They have individual physical characters and he really was a big on that. And you had to learn what the key to each horse was. You know, what made them tech and what made them even better? And happy horse wins races. That was his thing. And I learned a lot about the character of horses. You know, over the years the way we get the vet has changed, you know, we don't train quite as aggressively as we used to. We don't run as aggressively as you know, I don't know if the courses have changed or we've changed or it's a bit of both, but yeah, the individual horse, that's the key to real success, I think. I can't tell you Dan, how many times I have had trainers come out in this program and mention that very same thing. Treat them all as individuals. The other word that comes up a lot is patience. Is that a big key? Well, if you don't have it when you first start, you learn it very quick because yeah, if you're not patient, if you I write everything in my books and my training charts in pencil because you have to have a plan, but in this business, you have to be able to change it very quickly. If you don't set a plan out, you're probably won't get to where you're going. But if you try to stick to it too hard, you'll probably have heard some horses on the way. So you have to be very flexible and they teach your patients right from the very start. You mentioned writing things down in pencil, are you still doing things the old way and doing things by hand? I do. It's the way my head works. I've been doing it that way for a long time. I have the old style training charts. I mean, we do our bookkeeping and stuff all that so I'm on computer now and I spend a lot of time reading about horses and stuff on the Internet, but the trading charts that I take to work every day are still in, you know, there's still this square boxes and I go a long daily with them and like I said, I do them in pencil, so we can adjust to what the horse needs. That term old school is often tied to people like suge magee and Bill Matt and Wayne Lucas because they've been around the game for so long. And they've been doing things a certain way and doing it at a high level for so long. And they really haven't, they've changed their approach, but they still do things as they used to do them in some respects. So Dan, when you think about what it means to be old school what does that mean to you as a horse trainer? Well, yeah, that's a hard one. I mean, I guess it's some of the things you are.