TOC will partner with trainers Dan Blacker, Matt Chew, Mike Machowsky and Howard Zucker to offer a FREE “Conformation Clinic” at Santa Anita on Saturday, Apr. 11. The informal workshop is intended to help participants develop an “eye” for a horse. Attendees will visit the trainers’ barns, where they will view a variety of horses to identify their conformation strengths and weaknesses.
Blacker, a native of Oxford, England, was educated at the University of Edinburgh and graduated from the Darley Flying Start program. He worked as an assistant trainer to Tom Albertrani and Richard Mandella before taking out his trainer’s license in 2011. He keeps owners up to date through multiple means including phone, email, links to workout videos and Facebook. He rides all his horses at some point during their training, giving him a chance to assess exactly how they are training.
A third-generation horseman, Chew has been successfully training racehorses since 1982. He regularly runs horses at Santa Anita, Del Mar, and Golden Gate Fields. Among his trainees is Singing Kitty, recent winner of the $200,000 California Cup Oaks. Chew designs a training regimen unique to each horse, assessing individual characteristics and building on their strengths. He has participated in many TOC conformation clinics and seminars over the years and has developed a very professional presentation.
Machowsky first became interested in horses through his father’s ownership of Quarter Horses. He has been working at the track since the age of 14 and took out his trainer’s license in 1989, saddling his first career winner on New Year’s Day, 1990 at Santa Anita. He has trained numerous stakes winners including Native Boundary, Dancing Rhythm, Fencelineneighbor, Shuffling Kid, September Secret, Southern Image, Kelly Leak and Caracortado.
A native of New York, Zucker has been training Thoroughbreds for more than 35 years, beginning at racetracks on the east coast before relocating to California in 1983. He has developed and trained stakes horses such as Crafty C.T., Madame Pietra, Awesome Daze, Moscow Changes, Our Shining Hour, Synnin and Grinnin, Queen of the Catsle, Well Monied, and Bio Pro. A very accessible trainer, he is always happy to spend time educating new owners and has provided his expertise at TOC educational seminars and conformation clinics numerous times.
The event will begin at 10:00 a.m. at the Top O’ The Stretch just past Clockers’ Corner at Santa Anita Park. Santa Anita Park is located at 285 W. Huntington Dr., Arcadia, CA 91007. Since the workshops will take place in the stable area, suitable footwear is recommended. Although it is free and open to the public, reservations are recommended and can be made by calling TOC at (626) 574-6620 or online here.