KINGSTON, Jamaica – For over 10 years Gary Griffiths has been conditioning horses at Caymanas Park.
Having been through many ups and downs in this competitive venture, Griffiths is looking forward to a better year especially with his present crop of three-year-olds.
Let’s meet trainer Gary Griffiths.
WEBSITE: How did you get into horse racing as an occupation?
Gary Griffiths (GG): I came into the racing industry as an owner with trainer Rudolph Hardial. Hardial then made me his assistant so that I could come over to the track regularly and be around the stable area. From there, I entered the trainers’ programme and since then, I have been at the track, watching, learning and training. There are no regrets, as I really love what I do as a professional. No regrets at all.
WEBSITE: What year did you graduate to become a trainer?
GG: After doing the course, I graduated in 2007.
WEBSITE: Which horse was your first winner?
GG: My first winner was Moon Dancer ridden by Harriston Lewis. The first win is always important as it gives hope for the future and I can still remember the joy I felt visiting the winners’ enclosure for the first time.
WEBSITE: Which is the best horse you have conditioned/owned so far?
GG: I would say Shining Light. That horse was a little dream horse I bought for $200,000 and he went straight to Open Allowance and earned over $3 million in his time. He was a real fighter, who did not know how to give up, a very good race horse to train and I am just happy to have trained him.
WEBSITE: Your longest odds winner?
GG: I won at 99-1 on two different occasions with Alexander Spirit and Azario. Both were delightful moments and are among the many highlights of my career.
WEBSITE: Which is the biggest race you have won so far?
GG: I wouldn’t say that I have I won any big race, just a few Overnight Allowance events.
WEBSITE: Which is the best horse you have seen run at Caymanas Park?
GG: Eros. It has to be Eros. I haven’t seen any other horse like him. He was a very talented horse who won his races very impressively over varying distances. He also has many track records which is an indication of his class and talent.
WEBSITE: How would you sum up last year’s performances by your horses?
GG: It was a horrible year, but I expected that because I have a lot of young horses in my barn and the older horses I have were never really competitive so I just had to take my time and school the young horses.
WEBSITE: What are your expectations for the 2021 racing year?
GG: I would be lying if I didn’t say I have big expectations. I have 13 three-year-olds that I am expecting good things from this year and one of those horses, Broken Light at 6-1 was my first winner for the year. So, I am pleased with how things have started so far, and just hoping to continue the trend.